Fort Cacela Velha

Fort Cacela Velha, locally known as Forte/Fortaleza de Cacela (Velha), lies in the small village of the same name in the Algarve region in Portugal.

A Muslim castle at this site, a cliff overlooking the Ria Formosa lagoon, was first mentioned at the beginning of the 12th century. In the mid-13th century, it was taken by Christian forces during the reconquest of the Iberian peninsula. The castle was then donated to the Order of Santiago by king Alfonso III of Portugal. They then started to rebuild the castle.

By the mid-16th century, the castle had become a ruin again. On the order of the Portuguese king, it was then rebuilt to protect the coast against piracy. In 1617, however, its walls on the cliff side were in ruins again. The complete castle became ruined as a result of the 1755 Lisbon earthquake.

The present fort was built in the late 18th century using parts of its predecessor. It's a square fort with 2 square corner towers at the northern side and 2 starfort-like bastions at the southern, seaward side. There is a small turret on the western bastion. The turret on the eastern bastion was never completed.

The fort itself can not be visited as it is now used by the GNR; the National Republican Guard. The village itself is very small and quiet, although in summer its few restaurants attract tourists. But there are very nice views over the lagoons alongside the coast.


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Fort Cacela Velha

Fort Cacela Velha, locally known as Forte/Fortaleza de Cacela (Velha), lies in the small village of the same name in the Algarve region in Portugal.

A Muslim castle at this site, a cliff overlooking the Ria Formosa lagoon, was first mentioned at the beginning of the 12th century. In the mid-13th century, it was taken by Christian forces during the reconquest of the Iberian peninsula. The castle was then donated to the Order of Santiago by king Alfonso III of Portugal. They then started to rebuild the castle.

By the mid-16th century, the castle had become a ruin again. On the order of the Portuguese king, it was then rebuilt to protect the coast against piracy. In 1617, however, its walls on the cliff side were in ruins again. The complete castle became ruined as a result of the 1755 Lisbon earthquake.

The present fort was built in the late 18th century using parts of its predecessor. It's a square fort with 2 square corner towers at the northern side and 2 starfort-like bastions at the southern, seaward side. There is a small turret on the western bastion. The turret on the eastern bastion was never completed.

The fort itself can not be visited as it is now used by the GNR; the National Republican Guard. The village itself is very small and quiet, although in summer its few restaurants attract tourists. But there are very nice views over the lagoons alongside the coast.


Gallery