Sentinels of the
Compared to Indian
standards, Goan forts are very small in size. Nonetheless, these are
historic specimen of immense military, political and economic importance
in a land crisscrossed by rivers and canals and bordered by sea on the
west. The old monuments, now in ruins are mute testimony to the joys and
sorrows, and colourful and dark events of a bygone era.
Some are awesome in
sheer size like the Ruins of the St. Augustine's Tower, while others are
marvellous pieces of architecture, such as the Gate of the Adil Shah's
Palace at Old Goa.
There are quite a few
old Portuguese forts dotted around Goa, most of them on the coast. Most
of them are in reasonable state of preservation and are worth a visit if
you have the time.
Goa has several
imposing forts, though most of them lie in ruins today. One marvels at
the massive effort which was involved when the huge laterite stones were
lifted to the top of inaccessible hills, to erect the forts.
Sans cement, steel or
mortar, the giant walls have stood the vagaries of nature for centuries,
and would have gone on to last for several centuries more were they to
be looked after properly.
The Portuguese found
the need to raise the fortresses at several strategic points facing the
river mouths to defend their new acquisitions in the East. Of course,
they also acquired forts built by the neighbouring chieftains, when the
latter's lands were annexed by the Conquistadores. However, once the
defence priorities receded, the forts too were abandoned by the
See Also Other
Forts of Goa | Aguada Fort |
da Rama Fort | Chapora Fort |
Rachol Fort | Reis Magos Fort |
Fort | Other Forts )