BEHIND ALL THE HISTORY OF WARS AT A FORT, THERE IS A SPELLBINDING BEAUTY.
Standing on one of Asias oldest 4 storey lighthouse, you breathe in the tangy salt air, bask in the sun and drink in the entire pleasant view from atop. Try as you may, one cannot suppress the tingle of excitement at being at the same spot history took place 300 years ago.
Aguada fort is located 18 km from Panjim and roughly 52 km away from margao. Hard to miss, the 17th century Portuguese fort stands on the Sinquerim beach, overlooking the Arabian Sea, manages to envelope the entire peninsula at the south western tip of Bardez. A freshwater spring within the fort provided water supply to the ships that used to stop by. That is how it got its name: aguada means water. This fort served several other purposes. It has a capacity of storing 2376000 gallons of water, one of the biggest freshwater storages of the time in the whole of asia. This fort is divided in two segments: the upper part acted as a fort and watering station, while the lower part acted as a safe berth for the portuguese ships. Whereas, the upper part has a moat, an underground water storage chamber, gun powder room, lighthouse and bastions, it also has a secret passage to use during the time of war and emergency. The fort built at the mouth of the river mandovi, it was strategically located and was the chief defense of the portuguese against the dutch and marathas, capacitating around 79 cannons! Fascination for so large a fort would be an understatement.
Now, the lower part of the fort is the central jail of Goa and is used to imprison criminals connected with narcotic activities and this area is off limits for the people. Unless, you hire one of the many motor boats to go to the dolphin point, can see the central jail from the corners here, as you excitedly wait for the dolphins to emerge up the surface of the sea water. Also a little tidbit, the fort plays a crucial role in one of the movie scenes in dil chahta hai by farhan akhtar.
Your stay is the least of your worries. Fort Aguada beach resort, the 5 star rated hotel, owned by the tatas will cater to your every need and pamper you. It is composed of a number of villas and cottages, just yours for the picking. In addition to water sport, there are recreational facilities for tennis, squash and mountaineering.
If that is too expensive for your taste, one of the many hotels in Candolim will surely be accommodating. Plus you can literally put to use, the ‘shop till you drop’ phrase while you’re staying there.
Aguada fort seems like the perfect destination for a bright evening. The view from climbing up the spiral staircase, up the lighthouse, is ecstatic. It is one of the finest beauties we Goans can boast about. Here you will see families, friends, couples visiting this place, because no one can escape its enchanting beauty and has to give way to temptation to visit the place all over again.