Fort Aguada

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Fort Aguada
Fort aguada.jpg
Fort Aguada's ramparts overlook Sinquerim Beach and the Arabian Sea.
LocationGoa, India
Coordinates15°29′17″N 73°45′47″E / 15.488°N 73.763°E / 15.488; 73.763Coordinates: 15°29′17″N 73°45′47″E / 15.488°N 73.763°E / 15.488; 73.763
Built1612; 409 years ago (1612)
Fort Aguada is located in Goa
Fort Aguada
Location in Goa, India
Fort Aguada is located in India
Fort Aguada
Fort Aguada (India)

Fort Aguada is a well-preserved seventeenth-century Portuguese fort, along with a lighthouse, standing in Goa, India, on Sinquerim Beach, overlooking the Arabian Sea. It is an ASI protected Monument of National Importance in Goa.

Origins and history[edit]

The fort was originally constructed in 1612 to guard against the Dutch. It was a reference point for the vessels coming from Europe at that time. This old Portuguese fort stands on the beach south of Candolim, at the shore of the Mandovi River. It was initially tasked with defense of shipping and the nearby Bardez sub-district.

A freshwater spring within the fort provided water supply to the ships that used to stop by. This is how the fort got its name: Aguada, meaning watery in the Portuguese language. Crews of passing ships would often visit to replenish their freshwater stores. The Aguada Fort Lighthouse erected in 1864 is the oldest of its kind in Asia. Built in 1612, it was once the grandstand of 79 cannons. It has the capacity of storing 2,376,000 gallons of water, one of the biggest freshwater storage of the time in whole of Asia. This fort is divided in two segments: the upper part acted as fort and watering station, while the lower part served as a safe berth for Portuguese ships. Whereas the upper part has a moat, underground water storage chamber, gunpowder room, lighthouse, and bastions, it also has a secret escape passage to use during time of war and emergency. The lighthouse at the initial stage is used to emit light once in 7 minutes.

Fort Aguada was the most prized and crucial fort of Portuguese. The fort is so large that it envelops the entire peninsula at the southwestern tip of Bardez. Built on the mouth of Mandovi River, it was strategically located and was the chief defense of Portuguese against the Dutch.[1]

During the Salazar Administration, Fort Aguada was repurposed for use as a prison primarily, some claim, for Salazar's political opponents.[citation needed]

Aguada lighthouse[edit]

The Aguada lighthouse was built in 1864 on a hill located on the west to the fort. It is one of the oldest in Asia. It is located between Mormugao peninsula and Calangute beach. It was replaced by a new lighthouse in 1976 after serving for about a century. There was a large bell on the lighthouse which was found in the ruins of Saint Augustus monastery in Old Goa.[1]

Panorama of Fort Aguada

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Navy, Indian (1989). Maritime Heritage of India. Notion Press. ISBN 978-93-5206-917-0.

External links[edit]