Holy Places of Christianity in India - 11 Nights / 12 Days

Mumbai – Goa – Chennai – Kolkata

Day 01: Arrive Mumbai by flight

Meeting & assistance upon arrival at Mumbai airport, followed by transferring to hotel for check-in.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 02: Mumbai

Breakfast at hotel.
Morning proceed for Mumbai Church tour. Mount Mary Church –The Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, more commonly known as Mount Mary Church, is a Roman Catholic Basilica located in Bandra, Mumbai. The feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated here in the September, the birthday of the Virgin Mary. The shrine attracts people from all faiths who pray to the Virgin Mary for expressing their gratitude or requesting favors.

St. Thomas Cathedral, Mumbai, is the cathedral church of the Diocese of Mumbai of the Church of North India. Named in honour of Saint Thomas the Apostle, the Cathedral is located in the historic centre of Mumbai.

The Church of St. John the Evangelist, better known as the Afghan Church is an Anglican Church in Mumbai, built by the British to commemorate the dead of the First Afghan War and the disastrous 1842 retreat from Kabul. Memorials and laid up regimental colors displayed at the rear of the nave also record casualties from the Second Anglo-Afghan War. The church is located in Navy Nagar in the Colaba area of South Mumbai (Bombay). Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 03: Mumbai

Breakfast at hotel. Morning enjoy cruise across the harbor (9 Kms) to see Elephanta caves noted for huge rock cuts. (Elephanta Caves remains closed on every Monday.)

Later proceed for half day sightseeing tour of Mumbai the commercial capital of India includes Kamla Nehru Park, Hanging Gardens situated on the slopes of Malabar Hill offering a panoramic view of Marine drive, Chowpatty Beach, Prince of Wales Museum (Closed on Monday), Mani Bhawan, Dhobi Ghat, Gateway of India & drive through the Crawford Market, Marine Drive & Flora Fountain. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 04: Mumbai – Goa by flight 9W-475, 11:20 – 12:40 hours

Breakfast at hotel.
Morning checkout and departure transfer to Mumbai airport to board flight for Goa. Meet & assist upon arrival at Goa airport and transfer to hotel for check-in.
Rest of the day relax at the hotel or beach side.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 05: Goa

Breakfast at hotel.
Morning proceed to visit Churches of Old Goa: Known as the Rome of the East, Old Goa, till today is still regarded as one of Asia’s historical cities dating back to 1510 when the Portuguese built and occupied the city till its abandonment altogether in 1835 after a plague. The Churches in Goa which are set in Baroque style are now under the UNESCO World Heritage list. Among the significant Churches are the Se Cathedral (the seat of the Archbishop of Goa), the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, the Church of St. Cajetan, and notably, the Basilica of Bom Jesus which contains the relics of Saint Francis Xavier.

Also proceed to visit Miramar Beach, Miramar beach situated at the confluence of the Mandovi River and the Arabian Sea, is one of the most visited beaches of Goa, Dona Paula was formerly a village, and now a tourist destination, in the suburbs of Panaji, Goa. This idyllic rocky tourist attraction lies at the spot where the Mandovi and the Zuari rivers meet the Arabian Sea. It is easily one of the most popular spots on the itinerary of tourists visiting Goa. Initially the village was called Odavell but was later renamed Dona Paula.
Fort Aguada is a well preserved 17th century Portuguese fort in Goa on the Sinquerim Beach, overlooking the Arabian Sea. The fort was constructed in 1613 to guard the territory against a possible Dutch or Maratha invasion. It was a transit point for the vessels coming from Europe at that time. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 06: Goa

Breakfast at hotel.
Full day free for your own activities or relax by the pool side.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Goa Beach

Day 07: Goa – Chennai by flight AI-976, 07:35 – 09:00 hours

Early morning checkout and departure transfer to Goa airport to board flight for Chennai.
Meet & assist upon arrival at Chennai airport and transfer to hotel for check-in.
Later proceed for sightseeing & church tour of Chennai.

Annai Vailankanni Shrine - The famous chapel dedicated to the Annai Vailankanni Our Lady of Good Health, Besant Nagar. This was originally built in 1972. The upper portion of the walls is covered with paintings on the Apparitions of Our Lady of good Health. This was expanded in September 2000.

San Thome Basilica is a Roman Catholic (Latin Rite) minor basilica in Santhome, in the city of Chennai (Madras), India. It was built in the 16th century by Portuguese explorers, over the tomb of Saint Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. In 1893, it was rebuilt as a church with the status of a cathedral by the British. The British version still stands today. It was designed in Neo-Gothic style, favoured by British architects in the late 19th century. This church is one of the only three known churches in the world built over the tomb of an apostle of Jesus, the other two being St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City and Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Galicia, Spain.

Also visiting Fort St. Goerge, St Mary’s Church and also visiting the Museum to see the Art and Bronze Gallery (Closed on Fridays and Public holidays). Drive through the Flower and Fruit market, High court, Marina Beach and Snake Park.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 08: Chennai – Kolkata by flight AI-766, 11:35 – 13:55 hours

Breakfast at hotel. Morning checkout and departure transfer to Chennai airport to board flight for Kolkata. Meet & assist upon arrival at Kolkata airport and transfer to hotel for check-in.

Kolkata (formally Calcutta) is home to several churches catering to different sects and sub – sects of Christianity. Apart from the well known Protestant and Catholic sects Calcutta (Kolkata) also houses churches belonging to the Orthodox sect including Armenian, Syrian and Greek orthodox sub – sets.
Rest of the day relax at the hotel.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 09: Kolkata

Breakfast at hotel. Today proceed for Church tour of Kolkata. St John’s Church (1787) - Built by architect James Agg the St. John’s church is built with a combination of brick and stone and was commonly known as the “Pathure Girja” (Stone Church). St. John’s was built in the lines of St. Martin’s in the fields, London. The land for the St. John’s Church was donated by the Maharaja Nabo Krishna Deb Bahadur the founder of the Shovabazar Raj Family. The foundation stone was laid by the laid by Warren Hastings, the Governor General of India on 6 April 1784. The St.John’s church compound, which was once a graveyard contains several graves and memorials including the grave of Job Charnock, considered as the founder of the city.

Portuguese Church (1799) - Historical evidences indicate that the Portuguese arrived in Calcutta (Kolkata) much before Job Charnok, but the present Portuguese Church at Calcutta (Kolkata) dates back only to 1799 more than a hundred years after Charnok’s arrival. Dedicated to Rosary Virgin Mary, the Portuguese Church serves as a Cathedral Church for the Catholic Christian’s of Calcutta (Kolkata). Built in typical Catholic style the Portuguese Church comes in with a beautifully decorated triangular pediment, flanked on either side by two domed towers and an extended portico with arched entrance way.

St. Andrew’s Church (1818) - Located at the very heart of the city of Calcutta (Kolkata) the St. Andrew’s Church (or Kirk) is one of Calcutta’s (Kolkata’s) most well known landmark. Located next to the red coloured Gothic building the white coloured St. Andrew’s Church creates a striking contrast.

The handsome Grecian building of the Church of Scotland was opened for public worship on March 8, 1818. Like the St. John’s Church it was designed in the lines of St. Martin’s in the fields, London. Occupying a prominent position in Dalhousie Square, directly facing Old Court House Street, the Church with its tall massive spire formed one of the familiar features of the city. The white spire is crowned with a blck weather cock, which operates to this day. On the North and South there are elegant porticoes with lofty Doric pillars.

St Paul's Cathedral, one of India's most important churches. It is east of the Victoria Memorial at the South end of the Maidan. The steeple fell during an earthquake i n 1897 and was redesigned and rebuilt. Inside there's some interesting memorials and stained glass, including the west window by Sir Edward Burne-Jones. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 10: Kolkata

Breakfast at hotel.
Today the tour of this sprawling city starts with visit to daily Flower market to see the normal life of a common man with the different colours of flower and also have the view of Howrah Bridge; this bridge is built on river Hooghly and connects the city of Kolkata with the industrial town of Howrah. We now drive pass the Dalhousie Square where we see the Writers Building (State Secretariat), Raj Bhawan (Governor House), General Post Office Building, Kolkata High Court, Kolkata Town Hall and the St. John's Church. Continue drive past tour to Eden Garden - a cricket ground in Kolkata. The largest cricket ground in India and third largest cricket ground in the world.

Now visit a true beauty, Victoria Memorial (Closed on Mondays & Gazetted holidays), since 1921 this structure has been considered a symbol of Kolkata. White marble surrounds the wonderful garden, housing a museum that contains memorabilia connected to Queen Victoria during the British Raj.

Later visit the Indian Museum (Closed on Mondays), considered to be the earliest and largest museum not only of India but also of the Asia Pacific region. Museum gallery has rare collections of antiques from the Harappan Civilization, Meteorites, Buddha’s ashes, Shah Jahan’s Emerald Goblet and Egyptian mummies, one of the oldest museums of the world constructed in an Italian style of architecture. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 11: Kolkata

Breakfast at hotel.
Morning visit to Mother Teresa’s house (Closed on Thursday) who was probably one of the greatest women in the history of the world who dedicated her entire life serving humanity.
Rest of the day at leisure.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 12: Kolkata Departure by International flight

On time departure transfer to Kolkata airport to board flight for onward destination.

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