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During the late 16th century, Candolim became the first village to be entirely converted to Christianity in Bardez by the Franciscans. The present Christian identity of its villagers dates back to the conversion of Santu Sinay (Shenoy), a ganvkar (Konkani: freeholder) who belonged to the nobility of his people.
Santu Sinay (1577–1640), was the son of Naru Sinay; who had earlier migrated from Loutolim, Salcette, and established himself in Candolim, where he purchased the fifth vangodd (clan) of the comunidade on 13 August 1604. Naru Sinay died after 1624, and was survived by his wife, four sons—Jeronimo de Souza, Manoel de Souza, Santu Sinay, and Christovão d'Andrade, and one daughter, Quiteria de Souza. Santu Sinay was converted along with the rest of his family at the age of 8, and subsequently took the name of Salvador Pinto. His godfather was Fr. Manoel Pinto, a Franciscan rector of the Church of Our Lady of Hope of Candolim and the seminary of Reis Magos. He was brought up in the seminary of Reis Magos, where he developed a great devotion to St. Francis Xavier. Salvador Pinto was tutored by two Franciscan priests, Fr. Pinto and Fr. Simão de Nazareth; who succeeded the former as rector of Candolim parish. Salvador Pinto worked zealously to spread Christianity in the village. Fr. de Nazareth held great influence with the Viceroys and in recognition of Salvador Pinto's tremendous work in converting the village, obtained for him many life grants and concessions which are still held by his descendants. Fr. de Nazareth, as representative of Fr. Miguel de S. Bonaventura—Custodian and General Commissioner of East Indies and Diogo Dias, syndic of St. Francis and procurator of His Holiness—granted two perpetual graves in the Candolim Church, to Salvador Pinto and his father-in-law António Pereira in the transept, in front of the altar of Bom Jesus, and also to his wife and mother-in-law, Maria and Catharina Pereira in the transept; her grave located between those of two parishioners, Pedro Sequeira and Francisco de Souza.
Candolim was the focal point of the anti-Portuguese revolt of 1787, also called the "Conspiracy of the Pintos", because it was spearheaded by priests belonging to the village's Pinto (Shenoy) clan.
As of 2011[update] India census, Candolim had a population of 8500. Males constitute 52% of the population and females 48%. Candolim has an average literacy rate of 76%, higher than the national average of 59.5%; with male literacy of 81% and female literacy of 70%. 9% of the population is under 6 years of age.
Candolim lies 15 kilometres from Panjim, the Goan capital, in northern Goa. Beginning at Fort Aguada and merging with Calangute Beach towards the end, it is one of the longest beaches in the state. The beach in itself is very calm and peaceful, at times tourists come here from Rajneesh Ashram in Pune to take a break. What adds to the scenic beauty of the sand and sea are the scrub-covered dunes at the back of the beach, quite popular with tourists.
The main Candolim-Calangute Road is packed with shops and restaurants, but the beach front is rather free of any commercial activity apart from some water activities. Though the beach is close to bustling Calangute Beach, life is rather laid back at Candolim. Even the village is not very clustered, it is quite spread out so there is not any proper centre to it as such. The area around the beach can be termed as resort free as there aren't any resorts there. However, the beach has quite a number of inns at reasonable prices with good facilities.
A fascinating feature about the Candolim Beach is the ship River Princess, which has been stuck at the shores of the beach since 2000 and ever since become quite a tourist attraction in itself.
The fort was built by the Portuguese way back in 1612 for defense against the Dutch and the Maratha invaders. Along with the fort the church, lighthouse and the barracks of the Aguada Jail have become tourist attractions.
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- da Cunha Rivara, Joaquim Heliodoró; Borges, Charles; da Cunha Soares, Renato (1996). da Cunha Rivara, Joaquim Heliodoró; Borges, Charles; da Cunha Soares, Renato, eds. Goa and the revolt of 1787. Concept Publishing Company. ISBN 978-81-7835-363-0. Retrieved 2011-04-05.
- de Mendonça, Délio (2002). Conversions and citizenry: Goa under Portugal 1510–1610. Concept Publishing Company. ISBN 978-81-7022-960-5. Retrieved 2011-04-05.
- de Souza, Teotonio R. (1989). Essays in Goan history. Concept Publishing Company. ISBN 978-81-7022-263-7. Retrieved 2011-11-05.
- Prabhu, Alan Machado (1999). Sarasvati's Children: A History of the Mangalorean Christians. I.J.A. Publications. ISBN 978-81-86778-25-8..
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