Table of Contents
- Churches in Kerala: List of 10 Best Churches in Kerala
- Churches in Kerala: A Quick Guide to the 10 Best Churches in Kerala
- 1. Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica
- 2. Saint Mary’s Syro Malabar Cathedral Basilica
- 3. George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church
- 4. Saint Alphonsa’s Church
- 5. Saint Andrew’s Basilica
- 6. Nadamel Marth Mariam Church
- 7. Lourdes Forane Church
- 8. Pallikunnu Church, Wayanad
- 9. Catholic Rosary Church Thalaserry
- 10. Immaculate Heart of Mary Cathedral
Kerala is a hotspot of rich culture, ecology, and tourism. It attracts tourists from across the globe for its backwaters, exquisite views of the Western Ghats, tea estates, and spice plantations, serene lakes, cascading waterfalls, Kurinji flowers and more. It is also coloured in the vibrant hues of religious frenzy and festivity all time of the year. With so many magnificent churches in the state, a traveler is sure to stop by to admire the awe-striking extravaganza (and receive blessings) that they offer. No wonder Kerala has earned the moniker ‘God’s own country’. If you happen to be in Kerala and when you are done with the adventure sports and backwaters and nature walk, make sure to stop by a few churches in the state. The architectural brilliance of the churches in Kerala will surely leave you spellbound and mesmerized.
Why go there: Exquisite architecture| Spiritual awakening| Peace, and tranquility
Ideal for: Family trips| Solo Trips| Bloggers| Art lovers
Trivia: There are more than 5000 churches just adhering to the Roman Catholic faith in Kerala. Churches of other denominations cumulatively may have exceeded 8000 in number.
Things to bring back: Coir products | Coconut Shell Handicrafts | Nilavilakku (traditional lamp);
Churches in Kerala: List of 10 Best Churches in Kerala
|Name of the Church||Address|
|1. Santa Cruz Basilica||Fort Kochi|
|2. Saint Mary’s Syro Malabar Cathedral Basilica||Ernakulum|
|3. George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church||Ernakulum|
|4. Saint Alphonsa’s Church||Bharananganam|
|5. Saint Andrew’s Basilica||Arthunkal, Cherthala, South Kerala.|
|6. Nadamel Marth Mariam Church||Thrippunithura, Kochi|
|7. Lourdes Forane Church||Near Siso Mall, Thrivandrum|
|8. Pallikunnu Church, Wayanad||Wayanad|
|9. Catholic Rosary Church Thalaserry||Thalaserry|
|10. Vimalagiri Church||Kottayam|
Churches in Kerala: A Quick Guide to the 10 Best Churches in Kerala
1. Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica
Santa Cruz Basilica is one of the oldest and intricately designed churches in Kerala. It was built in the year 1505 by Francisco de Almeida. The church has been remodelled and renovated over a span of many years and was finally consecrated as a basilica by Pope John Paul II in the year 1984. The church has elaborate murals, fresco art and ancient paintings adorning its walls. One among the eight edifices of Kerala, the church has been designed in the Gothic style of architecture. The gothic architecture of the church coupled with the serene and peaceful environment that it has makes for a perfect location for spiritual rejuvenation. The church holds special English masses on Wednesday.
Distance from Fort Kochi: 250 metres.
Timings:7 A.M to 6:30 P.M (Monday to Saturday),
Things to do at Santa Cruz Basilica:Experience the Gothic architectural grandeur of the basilica. Appreciate the murals, fresco art and ancient paintings of the bygone era. Experience the divine aura of the place.
2. Saint Mary’s Syro Malabar Cathedral Basilica
The Saint Mary’s Syro Malabar Cathedral Basilica is one of the oldest churches in Kerala that was founded in the year 1112. The church is one among the eight basilicas of Kerala and has one of the most ornate architectural designs among the churches on this list. The Vatican has given recognition to the church as one of the holiest pilgrimage sites in the world.
Distance from Ernakulum: 4.3 km.
Entry Fees: Nil
Timings:6.30 A.M to 6 P.M (Monday to Saturday), 6.30 A.M to 8 A.M, 9.30 A.M to 5 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Saint Mary’s Syro Malabar Cathedral Basilica: Experience a spiritual rejuvenation in the serene ambiance of the church. Attend a morning mass and have a religious awakening.
3. George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church
The George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church is one of the oldest churches in Kerala. It was originally founded in the year 593 AD and is the largest church dedicated to Saint George in Asia. Thousands of people throng the church to have a sip of water from its well that is supposed to hold miraculous healing powers. According to records, around 50 million tourists and pilgrims from across the world visit this church in a year.
Distance from Ernakulum: 6.4 km.
Timings:6 A.M to 6 P.M (Monday to Saturday)
Things to do at George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church: Feel a spiritual exhilaration in the refreshing spiritual aura of the Church. Admire the ancient architectural genius of the monument itself.
4. Saint Alphonsa’s Church
Saint Alphonsa’s Church is a simple yet artistically designed church in Bharananganam in Kerala and is under the Thamaraserry diocese. The church is the resting place of the mortal remains of the canonized saint Alphonsa. Thousands of people flock to the church every day to offer prayers and attend mass in the hopes of blessings and healing. The church also has sprawling lawns and an exquisite fountain
Distance from Bharananganam: 600 metres.
Timings:5:30 A.M to 5 P.M (Monday to Saturday), Museum- 8:30 A.M to 4:45 P.M
Things to do at Saint Alphonsa’s Church: Attend a Novena on a Friday here to experience the spiritual aura of the church firsthand. See the glass statue of Saint Alphonsa that is housed in the church.
5. Saint Andrew’s Basilica
Popularly known as Arthunkal Church, Saint Andrew’s Basilica was founded in the 16th century by Portuguese missionaries. The church belongs to the Diocese of Alleppy and has been rebuilt numerous times over the centuries. The basilica is also the largest shrine of Saint Sebastian in the world.
Distance from Alappuzha: 23.4 km.
Entry Fees: Nil
Timings:5:30 A.M to 5 P.M (Monday to Saturday), Museum- 5:30 A.M to 4:30 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Saint Andrew’s Basilica: Attend the Arthunkal feast to bask in the revelry, vibrancy and colourful gaiety of the celebration. Feel a spiritual awakening or rejuvenation in the peaceful environment of the church.
6. Nadamel Marth Mariam Church
Nadamel Marth Mariam Church is a twelfth century church in the Tripunithura region of Kerala and belongs to the Jacobite Syriac Orthodox Church denomination. It is a simple yet beautiful church located in the heart of the city. The Church was frequented by Royal kings and members of their household to meet bishops and religious leaders for congregations. A newly ascended king of the Cochin Royal household would make a religious offering called sharkara thattu veypu in this church.
Distance from Ernakulum: 8.8 km.
Timings:7 A.M to 6:30 P.M (Monday to Saturday), 8:30 A.M to 6:30 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Nadamel Marth Mariam Church: Explore the architectural intricacies of the church and soak in the spiritual aura of the place. Additionally, you can also offer flowers and candles in the altar.
7. Lourdes Forane Church
The Lourdes Forane Church is situated in Trivandrum and belongs to the Changanacherry Archeparchy diocese. It is one of the most important churches in Kerala that is flocked by tourists and locals alike. The church has been designed using intricate wood work and murals. Elaborate paintings adorn the walls. The altars of the church are exquisitely framed. The church interiors and exteriors exude an aura of divination, serenity and grace. All the art work reflects the glory and the richness of the bygone era.
Distance from Trivandrum: 2.3 km
Entry Fees: Nil
Timings:5:45 A.M to 5 P.M (Monday to Saturday), 5:30 A.M to 5 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Lourdes Forane Church: Admire the wood carvings, paintings and other art work that adorn the magnanimous church. Soak in the divine ambiance and feel spiritually charged at the altar by offering your prayers.
8. Pallikunnu Church, Wayanad
Pallikunnu Church or Our Lady of Lourdes Church located at Wayanad is one of the most bustling pilgrim sites in Kerala. The church was built by a Latin Catholic priest named Father Jeffreno at Meenangadi. The church has a beautiful architectural structure that takes one by awe. It has lush green surroundings and a tranquil ambience which makes it a perfect spot for a spiritual getaway. What is striking about the church is that the festivities and other celebrations of the church bear a close resemblance to Hindu festivals.
Distance from Kalpetta: 12 km.
Timings:7 A.M to 6:30 P.M (Monday to Saturday), 8A.M to 6:30 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Pallikunnu Church, Wayanad: Visit the Pallikunnu Church during the Perunnal festival which is held in the early weeks of February.
9. Catholic Rosary Church Thalaserry
Located close to the Thalaserry Fort, the Catholic Rosary Church, Thalaserry attracts a substantial number of tourists every day. It is one of the oldest churches in Kerala. The wide facades, buttresses and colonial architectural style make for a spectacular experience here. The stained glass that adorn the windows of the church had been brought in from London during the colonial times. One can also be on the lookout for frescos and murals on the walls of the church. Through the premises of the church, one can get a bird’s eye view of the Thalaserry fort as well as the sea. The spiritual ambience of the church is sure to make one fall to one’s knees and pray.
Distance from Thalaserry Fort: 2.2 km.
Entry Fees: Nil
Timings:5:30 A.M to 5 P.M (Monday to Saturday), 5:30 A.M to 4:30 P.M (Sunday)
Things to do at Catholic Rosary Church Thalaserry: Experience the divine aura that the church and its surrounding exude. Also, watch the sea roll by and the Thalaserry fort from the top.
10. Immaculate Heart of Mary Cathedral
Vimalagiri Church or Immaculate Heart of Mary Cathedral is one of the busiest churches in Kerala that sees over hundreds of pilgrims every day. The church was established in the year 1956 and has been built in the Gothic architectural style which is a sight to behold. The church boasts of having the tallest church towers in the state of Kerala. Prayer service, special mass, and festivities are held on Christmas eve and are attended by thousands of people. The annual festival of the church known as the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary is held in the month of December and offers another divine experience altogether.
Distance from Kottayam: 2.3 km
Entry Fees: Nil
Timings:9:30 A.M to 6 P.M (Monday to Sunday)
Things to do at Immaculate Heart of Mary Cathedral: Visit the place for the spiritual calmness that it bestows. Attend the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of the Mary for a spiritual experience and enjoy the gaiety, revelry, and camaraderie that come with it.
Enlisted above are some of the most beautiful churches in Kerala. These elegant structures have everything from elegant styles to chic gothic and modern designs. They boast of frescos, murals, gilded altars, fountains, well-kept gardens, buttress, belfries, and the tallest towers. In spite of the varied exterior or interior structure, all the churches in Kerala have one thing in common- they all radiate spiritual and divine energy and must be visited at least once in a lifetime.