Goa is not just famous for its white sand beaches, but for beautiful Temples and Churches too.
Many temples were relocated and rebuilt away from original places to a little interior places to protect from invading Portuguese authorities – I read wikipedia.
Ramnathi, Shantadurga, Mahalaxmi and Mangeshi are some of the such famous Temples near to Ponda, rebuilt in 16th century. There were also renovated time to time.
Nageshi Temple is an exception. It is in its original place.
These Temples are beautiful, rich in colour and culture, tradition. Large group of Hindu sects are ardent followers of these temples.
This time I visited Nageshi, Shantadurga and Ramnathi that are in 5 km range from Ponda. I just walked down to these temples as early morning walk.
Temple ambience is really good and radiate divine aura around it.
One can stay in the rooms in the temple complex, if you are performing Pooja at the Temple. These rooms are for devotees only.
View of the Temple from one side.
View from the front end.
The Pushkarini. Very well maintained and devotees are allowed to swim, not bathe of course. I used to frequently visit and swim here almost 20 years ago. This place has remained same good as before.
Beautiful Deepa Stambha or Lamp Tower. Such huge lamp towers are unique to Goa Temples and found in all the temples.
Shantadurga Temple :
Main entrance and the Deepa Stambha in front.
View of temple from main gate side.
Elaborate Rangoli in side the premise of Shantadurga Temple. Priests are preparing for a Pooja.
Ramnathi Temple :
Main entrance and the Deepa Stambha.
Another view the temple complex.
You will find the group of local women selling flowers and offering to Deity, as you approach Temple. They are simple, honest people. They do not rip you, I experienced.
Next time when I am in Goa, hopefully for a longer period, I would like to explore more of Goa. That is the plan at least.
Ponda is about 30 km (takes 50 minutes) from Goa Airport (Dabolim). Road is quite good. These temples are with in 5 km range of Ponda. One can get cab from Ponda. There are local buses from Ponda.
Best Time to visit :
Temple opens at 0530 and closes at 2030hrs. If you want better weather then during November to January. If you want to avoid rains then avoid June to August. If you want to avoid summer then avoid April to May.
However Goa is good during anytime of the year.