Archaeological Museum and Portrait Gallery was set up in 1964, NS reorganised in 1981–82. It is run by the Government of India’s Archaeological Survey of India and is situated in the former Portuguese colonial capital of Old Goa, a historic one-time city which now attracts a large number of tourists.

The museum and portrait gallery is situated in the convent section of the Church of St. Francis of Assisi.

Items on display are included as part of eight galleries, comprising the Portuguese rule in Goa, and also the pre-historic and early historic periods of Goan history. The late Medieval period is well covered. There are also portraits of Governors and Viceroys of colonial Goa.

Besides this, there are postage stamps, wooden sculptures, pillars and other objects. Artificial and natural lighting is used for the display. The larger-than-life statue of the Portuguese epic poet Luis Vaz de Camoes is particularly noteworthy. There are also hero stones, sati stones, Persian and Arabic inscriptions, Portuguese weapons (rifles, swords, daggers). Video shows are available to visitors, and there is a publication sale-counter.

The showcases have been provided to display the important objects the pedestals are prepared to display the heavy stone and wooden objects. The portraits are displayed utilizing both natural and artificial light.

Master pieces in the collection includes: Luis Vaz de Camees, Vishnu with ten incarnation, Surya, Gajalakshmi, wooden sculpture of John the Baptist, ivory sculptures of Jesus Crucification, bronze statue of Albuquerques (first governor of Goa), hero stone, sati stone, Persian and Arabic inscription, portrait paintings of Vasco da Gama, Com Joa de Castro, Portuguese arms like rifle, swords and daggers, etc.

The additional facilities provided for the visitors include the potable drinking water, clean inventory, video show on World Heritage properties in India, children activity center, publication sale counter.

You’ll also find two large bronze statues here: one of the Portuguese poet Luís Vaz de Camões , which once stood more prominently in the central grassy area of Old Goa, and one of Afonso de Albuquerque, the Portuguese conqueror and first governor of Goa, which stood in the Azad Maidan in Panaji, before being moved here after Independence.

Upstairs, a gallery contains portraits of some 60 of Goa’s Portuguese viceroys, spanning more than 400 years of Portuguese rule. Not particularly exciting in terms of portraiture, they’re an interesting insight into Portugal’s changing fashions, each as unsuitable for the tropical heat as the last.