Friday, 3 July 2015

Historical Portuguese (1505) Fort - St. Angelo’s, Kannur

St. Angelo’s Fort, Kerala. S.India

St. Angelo’s Fort,,Kerala. India

St. Angelo’s Fort, located just 3 km west from the town of Kannur is one of the important forts in the Southern state of Kerala, India. Built in 1505 by the first Portuguese Viceroy, Don Francesco de Almeda, the fort provides a beautiful view of the Moppila Bay and Dharmadom Island, which are situated near-by. The Moppila Bay is a natural fishing bay which is being  used by professional fisher men today.

This historical fort facing the Arabian sea saw several battles over the ownership of this fort and it also silently witnessed  the victory and defeat of many rulers just like the ebb and flow of the sea waters in the Arabian bay. The local Indian ruler Zamorin and Kolathiri made a futile attack on the fort - 1507. Alfonso de Albuquerque who superseded Almeda as the Governor General, was arrested by the latter in this fort; however, his arrest did not last till October 1509. The fort  saw  a change of ownership in 1663 and the Dutch became the masters of that area. They modernized the fort by constructing  bastions such as   Hollandia, Zeelandia and Frieslandia. Later  King Ali Raja of Arakkal in 1772 bought the fort from the Dutch. In 1790, the British, who were on a land grabbing spree, laid their hands on this fort by seizing it by force from the local ruler. During this period, the British East India company under the patronage of the British Crown was a major force to reckon with and they had already captured many parts of India, of course, by dubious means!! Till they left the Indian shores for good in August, 1947, the British used this fort  as their  major military station.
St. Angelo’s Fort,,Kerala India

The major attractions in the fort are the
adjoining bastions, massive triangular in design,  built by the Dutch and the moat that runs around the monument. This protected monument is under the control of  the Archaeological  Society of India. Though some architectural features were redesigned by the Dutch and the English later, the overall design of this fort is an example of Portuguese architecture. There is a huge thick wall separating the saline sea water of the Arabian Sea from the inland water.

The small island of Dharmadom, 100 meters off the coast  is spread over an area of about  five acres in the Arabian Sea, providing a breath taking view of  St. Angelo's Fort in the back drop of amazing sunrise and sunset. 

St. Angelo’s Fort,moat.Kerala

This historical fort can be accessed by road, train and air. The nearest railway station is  Kannur, just 3 km from the Fort. The nearest airport is Karipur International Airport  Kozhikode,  93 kms away from the fort.