Built on the mouth of the Mandovi River, overlooking the vast blueness and might of the Arabian Sea, lies the indestructible structure of Fort Aguada at Siquerim, Goa. This great fort was the primary defense for the Portuguese against invaders coming in from Foreign Seas.
History of Fort Aguada
To protect their stand in Goa, in 1609 the Portuguese decided to strengthen their defense against rival and hostile threats coming in by sea from nearby and far lands across the Globe. Thus deciding to build one of the most formidable forts in Goa ‘Fort Aguada’.
The fort was completed in 1612 by the Portuguese rule under the Viceroy Ruy Tavara. The fort was the pillar behind defending the Portuguese force against the incoming attacks put forth by the Dutch and Maratha invaders.
The well-built structure of Fort Aguada remains to be the best-preserved fort in India till Today. Named after the word ‘Agua’ meaning water in Portuguese. The Fort Aguada got its name from the fresh water spring that gave it a constant supply of potable water.
The architecture of Fort Aguada
The architecture of Fort Aguada is a same example of the Portuguese military defense architecture displayed by the Portuguese engineers and architects.
The fort was constructed from laterite stone which was easily available in Goa. The fort distributes over the entire peninsula of Sinquerim. It was built using the natural terrain available resources, making it its structure more dynamic and unbreakable.
The ‘ramparts’ or defensive walls of the fort standing 5 meters high and about 1 and a half meters thick. It is also the main reason the fort has stood strong over the many years even till today.
The fort also features a high tower or citadel and a secret passage running from the tower down through the fort and also houses an approximate 200 plus canons along its castle walls.
The Fort Aguada Lighthouse
Gazing at Fort Aguada from a distance, one cannot forsake to be mesmerized by its mighty fortress, which remains to be incomplete without the beautiful site of its inbuilt lighthouse.
This picturesque view of the Fort Aguada lighthouse from a distance is worth a long appreciable observance.
The lighthouse at the fort was built in 1864 and is the oldest lighthouse of its kind in the whole of Asia.
Tourists can climb the Fort of this historic lighthouse for a small fee. The lighthouse was used to emit light every minute by an oil lamp back in the old Portuguese days and continues to emit light by the personnel in charge even until today.
At an area at the back end of this historic court lies the Aguada Jail, which was initially part of the main fort and later converted into a jail.
The Aguada Jail is one of the largest prisons in Goa, and since still in use, cannot be trespassed on by tourists.
Just outside the jail, there is a magnificent statue of a man and woman, the man cradling a child and the woman breaking the chains that bind her. This statue is said to signify the freedom struggle of Goa. Behind this statue lies the important pillar of Ashoka, the national emblem of India, remembering all who gave their lives for the freedom struggle.
Visiting time of Fort Aguada
The Fort is open at 9:30 am to 6:30 pm on all days of the week.
Places to visit around Fort Aguada
Tourists who come to see this fort, have plenty of other wonderful things to see at Siquerim.
Sinquerim beach is a sea beach where tourists can enjoy various water sports like scuba diving, water skiing, fishing, etc
The St. Lawrence Church on the hill beside the fort is another prominent monument built by the Portuguese during their rule and is worth a walk through while visiting Aguada.
If you’re a tourist looking to have a fun, relaxing time in your swimming gear, then you must plan a visit to the beautiful shores of Calangute Beach
How to reach Fort Aguada
Aguada is 15 km from Panjim, 49 km from Margao, 16 km from Mapusa and 40 km from Dabolim airport
Its just a few kilometers away from Candolim, a popular tourists destination in Goa.
Getting to Aguada is fairly easy for tourists staying in and around Candolim. Local buses regularly go from Calangute, Baga and Candolim to and from Aguada.
One can easily reach fort Aguada by hiring a taxi from their hotels or traveling by a private or rented bike or car.
At the top of the Fort, there is a parking accommodation for tourists to rest their vehicles.
Getting to the fort on foot from Candolim beach is also possible, as there is a 2km pathway going around to the fort.
Staying at around Aguada
Staying at around Aguada is not an issue at all. There are plenty of hotels, resorts and guest homes available with different budgets suitable for you.
The most luxurious experience is staying at the famous Taj Fort Aguada Resort. Resort is situated amidst part of the main fort. This experience is both stunning and breathtaking as the view from the Taj Aguada is just mesmerizing!
The historic ramparts of ‘Fort Aguada’ visited and loved by locals and tourists, remains to be one of the most exciting places in Goa. It is worth visiting by anyone interested in coming for a trip to this beautiful part of India.