A vantage point – that is what the ruler Adil Shah must have been thinking of when he built the Chapora Fort in Goa. What visitors take away from the site today is an amazing view – the blue of the sky and the sea converging on the horizon, coconut groves on the beaches, rocky outcrops contrasting with the golden, dry grass and lush green shrubbery growing in patches on the gentle slopes of the hill. The Fort has had its brush with fame in modern times via a Bollywood movie ‘Dil Chahta Hai’.
While the ten minute trek to the top is not one of the safest ones in my experience (loose soil means you need to be really sure of your footing), the reward is a bird’s eye view of Vagator beach to the left with the Chapora River as well as the Morjim beach to the right.
Most people visit the fort in the evening, trying to capture a sunset that is supposed to be spectacular. What with our family’s relaxed schedule, we didn’t leave too much time on our hands for sightseeing and had to fit in the Chapora Fort during the afternoon a day before leaving Goa. A big mistake I thought, as we winded our way up with the sun literally singing our skin. However, what that unusually hot December day also brought was a clear blue sky with fluffy, white clouds and a beautiful looking sea.
As we reached the top and passed an archway made of ancient rocks, we saw the thick walls of the fort stretching before us and the monotone of the dried grass inside the compound broken by intermittent green blobs of shrubbery. The fort itself is not much to look at and while there are two tunnels that could have created some excitement, they are both shut and inaccessible to the public now.
The revelation is made when you climb up the parapet – so, try that for yourself and feel your heart flutter.