Thursday, July 31, 2008

Fort Aguada, Goa


Fort Aguada, Goa
199804290 Fort Aguada, Goa, originally uploaded by williewonker.

Aguada Fort was built by the Portuguese in 1609-1612 to control the entry into the river Mandovi and to protect Old Goa from potential enemy attacks. A spring within the fort provided water supply to the ships that called there. The fort presently houses the Central Aguada Jail. "Aguada" means 'water' in Portuguese.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Church of St. Augustine at GOA


another view of Church of St.Augustine, GOA
Church of St.Augustine, GOA, originally uploaded by Sriranga.rao.

This is another view of Church of St. Augustine.

One of the major attractions of historical importance in Goa is The Church of St. Augustine built in 1602. According to records, Twelve Augustan Friars pooled their efforts and resources to construct the church on the Holy Hill at Old Goa in September 1572 and the church was completed by 1602. The government under the Portuguese later issued a ban against them. So they abandoned the church and the convent beside it. Both the church and the convent are in ruins now. But the soaring 46-metre high Bell Tower still remains and forms a major segment of the ruins.

The bell in the Bell Tower was removed and installed in the church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception at Panaji in 1871. It is in working condition even today. The bell tower that remains amid the ruins belongs to one of the four of the St. Augustine Churches that once stood there. Initially there used to be four altars, eight chapels and a convent attached to the church. The Church of St Augustine was considered to be the largest in Goa before it was damaged.

Unfortunately, out of neglect, the facade and half of the tower fell in 1931. In 1938 some more parts fell apart. After being abandoned by the founders, the convent was used for charity work by the institution of the Misericordia for quite sometime. The vault collapsed on 8 September 1842 due to prolonged neglect. The then Government under the Portuguese sold the materials of the remains of the church in 1843, but the few ruins are remaining till today.

Church of St. Augustine, Old Goa


Church of St. Augustine, Old Goa
Tower, originally uploaded by James113

Ruins of Church of St. Augustine, Old Goa, India, was one of the most magnificent churches. It is set atop a tiny hill.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Basilica of Bom Jesus

Basilica of Bom Jesus at Goa, India, where the body of St. Francis Xavier is housed

The Basilica of Bom Jesus located in Goa, India holds the mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier. 'Bom Jesus' is the name used for the infant Jesus. This Jesuit church built in 1695, considered as one of the best examples of baroque architecture is India’s first Minor Basilica.

This world heritage monument is a landmark in the history of Christianity. It houses the body of St. Francis Xavier, a very close friend of St. Ignatius Loyola with whom he founded the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). St. Francis Xavier died in the Sancian Island while waiting for a ship to Continental China on December 2, 1552.

The body of Francis Xavier was first taken to Malacca and two years later shipped back to Goa. It is said that the saint's body was as fresh as the day it was buried. The remains of the saint still attract a huge number of devotees, Christian and non-Christian alike, from all over the world, especially during the public viewing of his body every ten years, during the anniversary of the Saint's death. It was last held in 2004. The saint is said to have miraculous powers of healing and pilgrims and tourists come from all over the world.

This church with marble flooring is inlaid with precious stones. Apart from the elaborate gilded altars the interior of the church is simple. The church also houses paintings with scenes from the life of St. Francis Xavier. The mausoleum, designed by the 17th century Florentine sculptor Giovanni Battista Foggini took ten years to complete. On the top of it is placed the silver casket with the body of St. Francis Xavier. The silver casket was the gift of the last of the Medicis, Cosimo III, the Grand Duke of Tuscany.

On the upper level overlooking the tomb is the Bom Jesus Basilica Art Gallery, containing the works of the Goan surrealist painter, Dom Martin. Author and fellow Jesuit Anthony De Mello was also from Goa and does mention the basilica in his writings.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Gompa monastery, Leh


The Gompa monastery, Leh

The Gompa monastery overlooking the city of Leh, capital of Ladakh, in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, in the evening sunlight.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Elephant at Punnathur Kotta Elephant Sanctuary

The Devaswom maintains a unique elephant sanctuary, the only one of its kind in the world. These jumbos are the offerings of the devotees to the Lord. A large number of pilgrims and tourists visit this fascinating spot every day. In this vast compound, there are road facilities for pilgrims and tourists to go around.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Kovalam Beach - beautiful tourist paradise

The photographer notes: Kovalam is a beach town on the Arabian Sea in Kerala, a state in south India. It is located around 16 km outside Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) City in the Thiruvananthapuram district. There are a large number of beach resorts in and around Kovalam. The seaport of Vizhinjam is about 3 km away and famous for its special varieties of fish, old Hindu temples, big churches and a mosque. The Proposed International Trans shipment Terminal at Vizhinjam is also close to Kovalam.

Kovalam was among the most prominent tourist spots in India during the Hippy era. It still has a high status among tourists, who arrive mostly from Europe and Israel. Kovalam is finding a new significance in the light of several Ayurvedic salons, and recuperation and regeneration resorts which provide a wide variety of Ayurvedic treatments for tourists.

There are three beaches at Kovalam, separated by outcrops jutting out to the sea. The larger one is called Light House Beach for its 30 odd metre high light house. The second largest one is Hawah Beach named thus for the topless European women who used to throng there. It was the first topless beach in India. Topfree bathing and parading is banned now except in private coves owned by resorts. Visitors frequent these two beaches. The northern part of the beach is known as Samudra Beach in tourism parlance. A large promontory separates this part from the southern side. Samudra Beach doesn't have tourists thronging there or hectic business. The local fishermen ply their trade on this part. The sands on the beaches in Kovalam are partially black in colour due to the presence of ilmenite and thorazite. The normal tourist season is from September to May.

Darbar Sahib (Golden Temple), Amritsar, Punjab, India

Darbar Sahib, Amritsar, Punjab, India.

Darbar Sahib (Punjabi: ਦਰਬਾਰ ਸਾਿਹਬ ) is the most significant shrine of the Sikhs and one of the oldest Sikh Gurudwaras. It is located in the city of Amritsar, which was established by Guru Ram Das, the fourth guru of the Sikhs.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Leh Palace

Leh Palace
LADAKH, originally uploaded by BoazImages.

Leh Palace (Ladakh, India) in warm afternoon sunlight.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Thekkady, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

Thekkady, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Thekkady again., originally uploaded by Santosh Mg.

The author of this shot adds, "Thekkady is famous for Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. We were in a boat when this photo was taken".

Darter or Snake Bird at Thekkady

Darter or Snake Bird at Thekkady: The lakes and reservoirs of India always have a Snake Bird population. This is an adult breeding bird perched on a stump of old teak tree submerged in the Thekkady reservoir. Photo taken in January 2006, Nikon D70, Nikkor 300 mm, processed PS.


Orchid_Bangalore, originally uploaded by *santosh.

Are you looking for the most authentic, interesting and beautiful photos and images, news, articles, etc., on everything related to India and Indians abroad ? Come back here for more! Now read on...


mango, originally uploaded by sumesh187.

A bunch of mangoes, wallpaper 1024 x 768

Flower of the orchid family

Flower of the orchid family
nothing, originally uploaded by sumesh187.

A flower of the orchid family found commonly throughout Kerala. Computer desktop wallpaper size 1024 x 768.

Kerala - God's Own Country

Kerala - God's Own Country, originally uploaded by bijoy mohan.

A shot from Nedumudi, Alappuzha, Kerala State.

India Gate

India Gate
India Gate, originally uploaded by bijoy mohan.

India Gate in the capital of India, New Delhi, in the evening - no photoshop editing - it is in the natural colour and light. Wallpaper 1024x768.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Qutub Minar, Delhi - India

Qutb Minar (Urdu: قطب منار), also spelled Qutub Minar or Qutab Minar is the tallest brick minaret in the world, and an important example of Indo-Islamic Architecture. The tower is in the Qutb complex at Mehrauli in South Delhi, India. The Qutub Minar and its monuments are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Haji Ali Dargah, Mumbai - India

The Haji Ali Dargah (Hindi: हाजी अली दरगाह) is a mosque and dargah (tomb) located on an islet off the coast of Worli in Mumbai (Bombay). Lying as it does in the heart of the city, the dargah is one of the most recognizable landmarks of Mumbai.

The dargah was built in 1431 by a wealthy Muslim merchant and saint named Haji Ali who renounced all his wordly possessions before making a pilgrimage to Mecca. Legend has it that Haji Ali died on his way to Mecca and his body, in its casket, floated back to Mumbai. However, some believe that Haji Ali drowned at the place where the dargah stands today.

As many as 40,000 pilgrims visit the shrine on Thursdays and Fridays. People from all faiths visit & pray at the "dargah"

The whitewashed structure occupies an area of 4,500 metres, and an 85 foot (26 m) tower is the architectural highlight of the edifice. The tomb within the mosque is covered by a brocaded red and green chaddar (tomb cover sheet). It is supported by an exquisite silver frame. The main hall has marble pillars embellished with coloured mirror work: blue, green, yellow chips. The ninety-nine names of Allah are also written on the pillars.

Most of the structure is corroded due to saline winds blowing from the surrounding sea. It was last repaired in the 1960s, but civil engineers say the structure is beyond further repair. The Dargah Trust is awaiting permission to raze the structure and rebuild it with Makrana marble, the same marble used to build the Taj Mahal.

Sunday, July 13, 2008