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Label :

Tags : Forts & Palaces

Timings : 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Time Required : Less than 1 hour

Entry Fee : There is no entry fee to explore this fort. However, INR 20 is charged as a parking fee, and a toll of INR 20 is levied for using the Cantonment Road.

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St Angelo Fort, Kannur Overview

St Angelos Fort is definitely one of the most popular and frequently visited attractions of Kannur and for more reasons than one. The polished yet prehistoric structure of this fortress oozes with unadulterated elegance and overwhelming power. Standing ashore in the Arabian sea, St Angelos Fort enjoys a panoramic and unobstructed view of the diorama created by the merger of the magnetic waves and the azure waters. It also overlooks the mesmerising Mopilla Bay, a natural harbour.

St Angelos Fort is mainly famous for the gripping history and the intriguing tales it has to tell. This fort was a point of interest for many dynasties of domestic as well as the international origin and has seen many bitter battles in the quest to conquer it. The Portuguese Viceroy, Dom Francisco de Almeida had imprisoned his successor, Alfonso de Albuquerque because he did not want to give up the reins of his power. This led to a series of bitter events and conspiracies that have been etched in the history of Portugal as well as Kannur forever. Walking around the walls of this majestic fort, you can almost picture the battles that this fortress has seen. There are tombstones of the soldiers who lost their lives fighting for the fort, barracks and an old chapel here that you can explore. Kannur's first ever lighthouse also stands next to the fort and adds to its already hypnotic glory.

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History of St Angelo Fort

The magnificent stone fort was built by the first Portuguese Viceroy of India, Dom Francisco de Almeida, in the early 1500s on the golden shores of the rocking Arabian Sea. The history of the St Angelos Fort starts getting dramatic after the spice trade started brimming along the coast and the entire region was at siege from the many dynasties from India, Europe and Middle East- all trying to gain control of the industry. One of the many intense battles that were fought bitterly on sea was the Battle of Diu. You will be surprised to know that the battle was between the Portuguese on one side and a combined force of the kingdoms of Gujarat, Calicut and international allies like Egyptian, Ottoman Turks and Venetians on the other. You almost feel sorry for Portuguese but wait; it's the Portuguese that won.

This seemingly impossible victory of the Viceroy was where it all started, and a vicious political conspiracy ensued. Almeida arrested Afonso de Albuquerque, the general that led the Portuguese army with him in the Battle of Diu because Albuquerque was to supersede Almeida as Viceroy. Almeida imprisoned him for about six months inside the very St Angelos Fort. It so happened that the superior officers back in Portugal were rooting for Albuquerque, who eventually did take over the power, but it was too late- the Portuguese had had to renounce their hold over St Angelos Fort. The war had made serious damages to this fort.

About a century later, the Dutch took over the fort and had it restored and renovated. Bastions were built in and around the fort and the structure was brought up to date. St Angelos Fort was eventually sold to the Arakkal royal family during the 18th century. At present, the palace of the Arakkal family stands right next to the fort and has now been converted into a museum. The last known holders of the fort were the British and they did their part by building Kannur’s first lighthouse near the fort. St Angelos is not in its best condition right now, an effect of the many wars and decades that have passed. The fort has been destroyed from many areas, but it will always be remembered for the tale of its prisoner.

Architecture of St Angelo Fort

The fortress is shaped in a triangular fashion and is built entirely out of the sturdiest laterite stone. St Angelos Fort drips with the fascinating history plastered all over its walls. Walking around these walls and staring into the crashing waves of the Arabian sea, you can almost imagine the fleets of ship that docked here in the war to conquer this majestic fort. Gigantic bastions built by the Dutch are flanked in and around the structure. Small gaps in the walls filled with the outward facing spouts of cannons made of the purest iron.

Barracks are dotted along the premises along with tombstones in honour of the martyrs that lost their lives during the war. Climb the old staircases to find yourself the perfect view of the Mopilla Bay, a natural harbour. You will also find Kannur's first lighthouse built by the British next to the fort, a restored chapel and the haunt of the tourists, the Dharamdam Island.

How To Reach St Angelo Fort

St Angelos Fort lies bang on the languorous shore of the Arabian Sea and just 2 kms away from the city centre of Kannur. You can take an auto rickshaw or a cab from any part of the city to the fort, and they will take you there speedily and at quite affordable rates. Alternatively, you can also take a bus from the Cannanore Bus Stand. Many buses ply in and out of this bus stand and will take you around the city, including St Angelos Fort, at very economical ticket rates.

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St Angelo Fort Reviews

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Jerin Varghese

on St Angelo Fort 4 years ago
Beautiful place ...Best time to visit morning and evening ...Nice place for photoshoots...
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