St. Angelo Fort Kannur
A massive triangular laterite fort, replete with a moat and flanking bastions, the St. Angelo's Fort also called Kannur Fort was constructed by the first Portuguese Viceroy, Don Francesco de Almeida in 1505. St. Angelo's Fort was built in 1505 by Dom Francisco de Almeida, the first Portuguese Viceroy of India and is on the Arabian sea about 3 km from Kannur town. It was attacked in vain by the local Indian ruler in the Siege of Cannanore (1507).
On August 1509 Almeida, refusing to recognize Afonso de Albuquerque's as the new portuguese governor to supersede himself, arrested him in this fortress after having fought the naval Battle of Diu. Afonso de Albuquerque was released after three months' confinement, and become governor on the arrival of the grand-marshal of Portugal with a large fleet, in October 1509.
The fort changed hands several times. In 1663, the Dutch captured the fort from the Portuguese and sold it to Ali Raja of Kannur. In 1790 the British who seized control over the fort, renovated and equipped it to be their most important military station in Malabar. It is fairly well preserved as a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India. A painting of this fort and the fishing ferry behind it can be seen in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The Dutch captured the fort from the Portuguese in 1663, then later sold the fort to king Ali Raja of Arakkal. In 1790 British seized it and transformed it into their chief military station in Malabar. The fort is in Cannanore cantonment area. St Angelo's fort is a most important historical monument and a good tourist centre. Here Kerala Police have posted 6 Tourism Policemen for the protection and guidance to the tourists. Among them one Policeman Sathyan Edakkad has detailed knowledge about this fort and the surrounding places. He wrote and published two books in Malayalam language named
1. Vasco da Gamayum Charitrathile Kaanapurangalum'" (Vasco da Gama and the unseen pages of history).
2. Kannur Kaanaan Ariyan (Kannur to see and to know) In this books, he describes the past and present situation of the fort.
Today, St. Angelo's Fort is a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India. The fort offers a fascinating view of the Moppila Bay and Dharmadom Island. Dharmadom island, only 5 acres in area, is situated 100 metres away from the mainland in the Arabian sea. The Moppila Bay is a natural fishing bay. A sea wall projecting from the fort separates the rough sea and inland water. Today, the bay has turned into a modern fishing harbour, developed under the Indo-Norwegian Pact. The Moppila Bay Harbor and Arakkal Mosque are near the fort. The fort is now well-maintained under the supervision of the Archaeological Survey of India. Tourists are allowed entry to the fort every day of the week between 8 AM to 6 PM.
St. Angelo Fort Kannur Location :
Nearest railway station: Kannur, about 3 km.
Nearest airport: Karipur International Airport, Kozhikode about 93 km.
Attraction : A fascinating view of a natural fishing bay and a sea wall projecting from the fort separating the rough sea and inland water.