Strategically built in 1612 at the estuary of the river Mandovi, the Aguada fort, is the largest and the best preserved fortress in Goa! It was built to guard against the Dutch and the Maratha invasions.
|Entering the fort....|
Fort Aguada was the most prized and crucial fort of the Portuguese. It is so large that it envelops the entire peninsula at the south western tip of Bardez! And is located 18 kilometres away from Panaji.
|Inside the fort!|
The walls of the fort are 5 metres high and 1.3 metres wide. And it was protected by two hundred cannons and a deep dry moat, which we had to cross to reach the inside of the fort. No wonder it was the only fort which was not conquered by any invaders during the 450 year regime of the Portuguese in Goa.
|The moat and the high ramparts|
There is freshwater spring within the fort which provided water supply to the ships that used to stop by to replenish their fresh water stores!
At the center of the courtyard, lies a huge underground reservoir with a capacity of nearly 2.25 million gallons of water. It was one of the biggest freshwater vaulted cistern of that time in Asia. "Agua" in Portuguese means water. Thus "Aguada" denotes a place where water is accumulated and the fort was aptly named ‘Aguada fort’
|The massive water reservoir!|
This fort is divided in two sections: the upper part comprised of a moat, underground water storage chamber, gunpowder room, light house and bastions. It also has a secret escape passage to use during time of war and emergency. The lower part served as a safe harbor for the Portuguese ships.
On the ramparts, behind the fort, is the famous Fort Aguada Beach Resort, a five star hotel, owned by the Tata group. It is part of an 88 acre (360,000 m2) complex, situated on Sinquerim beach, overlooking the Arabian sea.
|View of the Arabian sea|
|Picturesque view from the fort|
A part of the Aguada fort has been transformed into the Central jail too, which happens to be the largest jail in Goa.