Bandra Fort or Castella de Aguada, as is known in Portuguese, is an ancient fort situated at Bandra, Mumbai.
This magnificent fort was constructed in 1640. The purpose was to use the fort as a watchtower, overlooking the Arabian Sea, Mahim Bay and the southern island of Mahim. This fort was one among the many forts constructed by the Portuguese along the western coast of India, during their rule in the middle of the last millennium.
In 1739, the fort was attacked by the Marathas. They won and took control over the fort. In 1774, the British invaded the fort and took control of it after the First Anglo-Maratha War.
In the early 18th century, after the decline of the Portuguese rule in India, the Marathas became the greatest threat to British possessions in Mumbai. The British partially demolished the fort. This was done as a precautionary measure to avoid the possibility of the fort being used by the Marathas as a forward military base to attack British ruled Bombay (Mumbai is the new name).
Bandra Fort is one among the best historical monuments to visit near Bandra. This historic fort spans across different levels, ranging from sea level to an altitude of 24 meters. Several movies has been pictured in the fort.
Taj Land’s End hotel is currently responsible for the maintenance of this Historical Monument, Castella de Aguada. In 2003, local residents association along with the help of Shabana Azmi, the Member of Parliament, restored masonry walls of the fort. These walls were in severely damaged condition. The brick arch, which was on the verge of collapse, was also repaired.
How Do I Go to Bandra Fort?
Bandra Fort is accessible by road. It is at a distance of around 18 kilometers from the Gateway of India. Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is at around 8.5 kilometers from the historic fort, Castella de Aguada Alias Bandra Fort.