Arnala Fort Quick Facts
|Vasai City, Maharashtra State (India)
|Firstly Built by
|Sultan Mahmud Begada
|Ancient Mughal Architectural Style
|Current status of the Fort
|Control of the Fort
|Bajirao Shivaji, Portuguese King, Maratha Empire and East India Company, and Government of India
Arnala Fort Overview
Arnala Fort is located on the Arnala Islands, 12 km north of the city of Vasai in Maharashtra. This fort is one of the major tourist attractions of Maharashtra. One reason for this is that it is located on an island.
The special thing about this fort is that it is surrounded by water on all sides, due to which it is known by many names. This fort is known as Jaldurga and the local people of Arnala town refer to it as Janjir-Arnala.
Arnala Fort History
The construction of Arnala Fort was done in 1516 AD by a local man of Wakai city named Sultan Mahmud Begada. When it was built, it was under the authority of the Maratha Empire, but in 1530, when the Portuguese established their headquarters at Fort Bassein, they also gained control over the island of Arnala Fort. The Portuguese donated it as a gift to a Portuguese named Rais.
He destroyed some part of the old fort and got them rebuilt, since then Fort remained with the Portuguese for about 2 decades, after which the Mughal Empire also fought a lot to capture this fort but they were unsuccessful. In 1737 AD, King Baji Rao I of the Maratha Empire sent his brother Chimaji Appa to take control of this fort and he was successful in doing this work. He attacked the fort and established his rule over it and got it rebuilt, but when the First Anglo-Maratha War took place, it was captured by the British in 1781 AD.
Arnala Fort Interesting Facts
- There is a large octagonal fresh water reservoir inside the Arnala Fort.
- There are idols of Ambakeshwar, Goddess Bhavani and Lord Shiva inside this fort.
- Inside the fort are the tombs of Shahali and Hajjali.
- The 'Paduka' of Shri Nityanand Maharaj is kept in a dome on the eastern face of the fort.
- There are many types of concrete paintings at the entrance of the fort, in which there are beautiful pictures of elephants and tigers.
- About 550 meters away from the south side of the fort is a Martello tower. These towers were built around the 19th century in the British Empire. But it has no entrance.
- Presently this fort is not in very good condition. The fort has been in ruins due to frequent attacks, but still the view of the Arabian Sea remains a center of attraction for tourists.
- Due to the water around the fort, people use boats etc. to come to it, due to which this fort looks very beautiful.
How to reach Arnala Fort
- Virar Railway Station is the nearest railway station to Arnala Fort which is located just 10 km away. From there the fort can be reached by auto rickshaw etc. to the nearest coast.
- Apart from this the nearest airport to Arnala Fort is Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.