Shri Shantadurga Temple (Mandir) is a famous destination in North Goa. The temple is located 28 km away from Panjim Kadamba Bus Stand. You can also visit the place from Vasco Da Gama Railway Station at a distance of 34 km or from the Margao Railway Station which is 20 Km away from the temple.
Located at the foothill of Kavlem village in Ponda Taluka, Bhagwan Shantadurga temple Goa is one of the largest and oldest temples in Goa. The temple is famous for both historical and spiritual significance. Goddess Shantadurga is known as the Goddess of Peace who is the main deity worshiped in the temple. Here Goddess Shantadurga is also addressed as ’Santeri’.
Goddess Shantadurga is an avatar of Shree Jagdamba Devi and the name Shantadurga is connected to a mythological story. Once Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu engaged in a battle. Then Lord Brahma urged to Goddess Parvati to intervene between the two fighting Gods. Goddess Parvati settled the war by placing Lord Vishnu on her right hand and Lord Shiva on her left hand. Since then Goddess Parvati is known in the name of Shree Shantadurga Devi.
There isa historical reason behind the shifting of the deity of the Shantadurga temple in Goa from Cavelossim to Kavlem. The temple was originally located at Cavelossim that was destroyed by the Portuguese in 1564. The deity was shifted to Kavlem the current location of the temple. Initially, the deity was placed on a small laterite mud shrine which was later converted into a beautiful temple. The new temple was built during the reign of Maratha ruler Shahu Raje of Satara from 1730 to 1738 and was again renovated in 1966.
The temple is based on a combination of Indo-Portuguese architectural style. Unlike other temples in Goa, Shree Shantadurga temple has a Pyramidical Shikara, Roman-arched windows and a flat dome encircled by balustrades. The temple is painted in maroon, peach and white color that makes it more serene and elegant. Another major attraction of the temple is a beautiful Deepsthamba or lampstand. The Deepsthamba gets unexplainable beauty during the festival times when it is lighted. There is also a big lake outside the wall of the temple complex. The temple has a golden palanquin in which the deity is paraded on festive occasions.
The parade or Yatra (annual festival) is held during December when thousands of devotees gather at the temple. The idol is placed in the golden palanquin and taken out for procession during the festival. Some of the important festivals that are celebrated at the temple are Lalkhi Utsav, Muktabharani Utsav, Tulsi Vivah and Kala Utsav.
Shantadurga temple Goa timing is very convenient for the devotees to enter the temple. There are two timings when you can visit the temple either from, 5:30 AM to 12:30 PM or from 1:30 PM to 8:30 PM and entry is free.