Forts in Raigad District
Raigad Fort is located in the Sahyadri mountain range at a distance of about 25 km from Mahad in Raigad district. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj repaired this fort and built it. In the year 1674, it was declared the capital of the Maratha Empire. There is a ropeway to reach the fort, so you can reach the fort in a few minutes.
The ancient name was ‘Rairi‘. People in Europe used to call it ‘Eastern Gibraltar‘. Raigad is as invincible and inaccessible as Gibraltar’s Thane is invincible. Five hundred years ago, it did not have the appearance of a fort and was just a hill, when it had two names, ‘Rasivata‘ and ‘Tanas‘. It is also known as ‘Nandadeep‘ due to its size, height and surrounding valleys. During the Nizam rule, Raigad was used to hold prisoners.
There is a man-made lake on the Raigad fort and its name is “Gangasagar Lake“. The only way to reach the fort is through the “Maha-Darwaza“. In the fort, there is a replica of the throne in the state court, which is facing the gate of the city hall. The area near the throne is designed for sound waves in such a way that the words spoken here at the door of the court can be easily heard up to the throne. Raigad fort has a famous bastion built on a high valley and is called “Hirkani Buruj“.
Murud-Janjira Fort is a water fort located near the city of Murud on the Arabian coast. There are boats to reach the fort from Rajapuri port. The main gate of the fort faces the Rajapuri coast and the other gate is towards the open Arabian Sea. To the west is a gate facing the sea, called the ‘Sea Gate‘. Many European and indigenous cannons can be seen on the bastion of the fort. The fort, which is now in a dilapidated condition, has all the amenities of a palace, such as a palace, rooms for a doorman, a mosque, and two small freshwater ponds. The palace for the Nawab of Janjira is still in good condition. It is situated on a beautiful coastline, Murud-Janjira Fort is considered impregnable.
There is a village called Murud on the west coast of Raigad district near the Arabian Sea. Rajapuri is a village about four to five kilometers away from Murud. To the west of this village is Murud-Janjira fort on an island in the sea. Shida boats depart from Rajapuri to reach this fort. However, there is no accommodation or food on the fort.
The main attractions of the fort are the three huge cannons on the Murud-Janjira fort – ‘Kalalbangadi’, ‘Chawri’, and ‘Landa Kasam’. It is said that in the past these guns were known for their long-range.
Colaba Fort or Fort-e-Colaba (Fort Colaba) is located in the Konkan region of the Indian state of Maharashtra, near Alibaug, 35 km south of Mumbai. It is located on the shores of the Arabian Sea, 1 to 2 kilometers from the shore.
The coastline of Alibaug taluka, which is 30 to 35 kilometers long, is known as ‘Ashtagar‘. The king of this Ashtagara is ‘Fort Colaba’, Pankot of Alibag. One of the old forts that Shivaraya repaired and fortified was ‘Fort Colaba!’ Fort Colaba was the first maritime capital of Kanhoji Angre, whom the British called ‘Shivaji of the Sea’.
Colaba Fort was a very important seaport of the Maratha Empire. The fort is located on the west coast in the sea near the city of Alibaug. The fort has two gates facing the sea and one towards Alibaug. Although the fort is a water fort, the freshwater wells on the fort are a feature of the fort. According to the treaty signed with Balaji Vishwanath in 1713 AD, Colaba fort along with other forts were handed over to Kanhoji Angre. Kanhoji Angre used this fort to launch several attacks on British boats.