Temple architecture

Shree Damodar Zambaulim Temple – Itinerary, History, Festivals, Heritage

Located 54 km from Panjim Kadamba Bus Station, 49 km from Vasco Da Gama Railway Station and 19 km from Margao Railway Station, Shri Damodar Temple is located in South Goa.

The Shri Damodar temple is one of the most beautiful and famous architectural constructions in Goa. It stands on the bank of the Kushawati River near the village of Zambaulim on the Quepem Taluka border. Hindus believe that the Kushawati River has healing powers that help get rid of various bodily ailments.
The Damodar Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located on the banks of the Kushawati River near the village of Zambaulim in South Goa, India. Shri Damodar is the Grama Devata or the village god of the whole village of Loliem. The Temple follows the rules laid down by The Gokarna Partagali Jeevottam Math. The Damodar temple, belongs to the GSB (Gowda Saraswath Brahmins) community.

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History of Damodar Zambaulim Temple
The temple was established by the Prabhudesais, who arrived in the hamlet of Loliem in 1500 AD. The story says that the Prabhudesais once ruled over the kingdom of Kudal, a village located in present-day Maharashtra. The deity was originally based in a temple where the Church of the Holy Spirit now stands in Margao and was moved to escape the Portuguese inquisition in 1567 when the temple was destroyed and the church was built on its site. Both Hindus and Catholics revere him. And it was originally founded in Mathagram later known as Madgaon.

The Mahajans of Madgaon displaced the local deities, Ramnath, Damodar, Laxmi-Narayan, Chamundeshwari, Mahakali, Mahesh, etc. towards Zambaulim. The Desais of Rivona helped the Mahajans and gave them land for building temples as well as Vatan who is still paid today. And records on the date of construction of the original Damodar temple at Zambaulim and the dates of later extensions or reconstructions of the temples up to 1885 are not, so far, available. In 1910, the small temple was replaced by a huge one, which stands today in the current place.

Damodar Zambaulim Temple
The presiding deity is Shri Damodar. Sanctum houses the presiding deity along with Shri Kshetri and Shri Raudri. There is a huge Sabha Mandap outside the sanctum. A special sangamarvari chowk has been created for pradakshina around the shrine. Deepa Sthamba (Lamp Tower) stands opposite the shrine. There is also an idol of Lakshmi Narayana inside the shrine. There are shrines for Goddess Chamundeshwari and Shiva on either side of the shrine. The enchanting idol of Lord Shiva was enshrined at the current site after the Portuguese demolished the original temple in 1567.

There is a Tulsi Vrindavan in the Temple premises. There is a shrine for Lord Venkatesh within the temple premises. It was installed in 1910. A Saligrama is kept before Lord Venkatesh. The walls and pillars of the temple have beautiful carvings as well as Bhagavat Gita inscriptions. Some pillars depict scenes from the Mahabharata as well as paintings of other Hindu gods. The Mahajans of this temple are the Prabhudesais. Lodging facilities are available within the temple complex for community members.

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Festivals at Damodar Zambaulim Temple
The temple celebrates festivals like Rathotsava, Diwali, Vanabhojan and Shigmo. The main festival celebrated in the Shri Damodar temple is called Shigmo. This is a Hindu spring color festival in Goa, which only lasts for a week. During the festival, the Panair takes place and the folklore show during which all the participants exchange gulal (powders of different colors) with each other and organize various parties.

Hours: 5:30 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.