Among all the forts from Goa, this one doesn’t have that stern and uncluttered look. This fort is still well-preserved and standing proud today. The fort commands a magnificent look and is worthy of being visited. It is considered to be one of the foremost coastal forts in Goa. Dating back to 1624, this was once the most important of coastal forts. Mormugao was an important port for Portuguese ships. The fort is near to the internationally famous Mormugao Harbor which was built to protect the harbor situated near the Vasco Da Gama town. This fortification was built on the order of the Viceroy of the Portuguese State of India, Dom Francisco da Gama, Fourth Count of Vidigueira, during his second government, for the defense of South Goa bar, which was then capital of the state of India (Estado da Índia).
His works began in 1624, according to ancient epigraphic inscriptions. In that century, due to the continuous plagues and attacks that racked the old city of Goa, the Viceroys considered the transfer the capital of Portuguese India (Índia Portuguesa) to Mormugao, for what purpose some buildings were erected. The high project costs led to its abandonment though. The area was lost in 1737, during the invasion of the Marathas.
It is situated at the extreme northwestern point of Salcette and guards the entrance to the port. Located just north of Vasco Da Gama city and just south of Mormugao Port, this is the closest fort to Goa’s airport, Dabolim. Primarily, Mormugao was generalized to be the capital of the Portuguese empire, hence the fort was erected and in 1703 the viceroy moved into the town.
The fortress is about 10 km in circumference and boasts of possessing some ancient articles like 20 bulwarks, three magazines, five prisons, a chapel and quarters for the guard. There were two beautiful fountains. The Fonte de Malabar kept the royal arms and was said to bob up from a gold mine and the Fonte de Santo Ignacio which had a more modest beginning in a sulphur mine.
How to Reach:
Mormugao fort is one that is closest to Goa’s Dabolim airport, around 4 kilometers south of the city of Vasco Da Gama. You can reach to the fort by cab, Bus or rickshaw, or one might even rent a bike or a car and drive down. The nearest Train station is Vasco Railway station, although main train services stop at Margao station, only local trains sometime’s stop by Vasco station. So the Margao Railway Station will be better.
30.6 km from Panaji – 48mins
4 km from Dabolim Airport – 13mins
31.5 km from Margao Railway Station – 48mins
1.4 km from Vasco Railway Station – 5mins