Sindhudurg Fort Guarding The Konkan Coast


Located on the Konkan coast, between Mumbai and Goa, Sindhudurg Fort is a mighty fort as it stands in the middle of the sea that can be approached only via the water route. Shivaji built many forts in and around Maharashtra, but this one probably is the most unique and no wonder the only place that has a temple dedicated to him. Literally translated it means the fort in the ocean, appropriately named. There are many points of view from which you can look at this mighty fort.

Sindhudurg Fort, Konkan, Maharashtra - Incredible fort built in sea
Sindhudurg Fort, Konkan, Maharashtra – Incredible fort built in the sea

Sindhudurg Fort Tour

Engineering Marvel

To begin with, it is an engineering marvel. Built-in mid the 17th CE, on an islet in the Arabian Sea, it took only three years to construct it. Its foundation has been set in molten lead and the ramparts have 75000 kgs of iron in them. Just imagine the strength of the fort. No wonder it still stands strong after so many centuries, despite not having much maintenance effort. The design is such that it is difficult to make out the entrance from the outside. Even if you figure it out after going around the fort, the way into the fort is not straight for the first-time visitor.

Sindhudurg Fort a fortress in the sea
A mighty fortress in the sea

Sweet Water to sustain

Being an island the biggest issue would have been sweet water for sustaining life inside the fort. There are three sweet water wells inside the fort. I got two contradicting theories about sweet water – first is simply that they are naturally sweet water wells. And the other seems more logical that Shivaji had the rainwater harvesting system in place. The water from the monsoon was good enough to sustain life inside for a whole year. I could not verify which one is true. But to my logical mind, the second sounds more likely as the bed around the islet is quite rocky, and having a natural well sounds unlikely.

View of the wall and sea from atop
View of the wall and sea from atop

Shivaji Temple at Sindhudurg Fort

Then, there are things to see inside the fort. There are a few temples, but the biggest one is dedicated to the Maratha warrior and the most revered figure in Maharashtra Shivaji himself. Beautiful trees surround this simple but serene temple.

Fort Walls

You can go in any direction from the main entrance and climb the thick walls with bastions that define the fort. The condition of the walls is not great, the steps are uneven and there are no safety features installed. No medical facilities seem to be available, so you need to be very careful while climbing. If you climb, you will see the view of the coastline with coconut trees forming the skyline. Colorful boats provide vibrancy with their colors against the different blues of the ocean and the sky.

Tarkarli Beach is also visible from one side of the fort. There are Shivaji’s fingerprints and footprints that are preserved by building a small structure around them. You have to stress your eyes a bit to look at them through the iron rods. Small shops inside sell cold drinks, Sharbats, and snacks.

Shivarajeshwar temple in the Sindhudurg Fort
Shivarajeshwar temple

Myths & Legends of the Sindhudurg Fort

There are myths and legends associated with the fort. It is a living fort, even today and few families still live inside it and take care of the temple and other things. Rough roads lead you in various directions. It is said there is an underground tunnel through the ocean that leads to one of the villages on the coast that were closed during the British period. Now we know that most forts have an escape route built in. But building a secret tunnel to the fort is tricky because it can be discovered very easily by the enemy and blocked.

Today no one is able to point out where that tunnel is. There is a coconut tree with a branch that also produces coconut; this is an exception, as the coconut tree does not grow branches. My logical mind says this must be a hybrid tree.

Landscape view of the seashores
Landscape view of the seashores

Boat ride to the fort

The boat ride is enjoyable. Halfway through the way, you have rich green beaches on one side and a majestic fort on the other. With many rocky outgrowths peeping out of the water and colorful boats plying back and forth. Standing on the walls of the fort is like being at the edge of the earth with water all around you, while you stand in a firm place.

If you are in this region, it is a must-visit Tourist Place in Maharashtra.

Recommend you to read the following Places to visit in Maharashtra.

Amboli Ghat – Kingdom of Waterfalls in the Western Ghats

Lohagad, Lonavala and Karle Caves

Ellora Caves – Kailash Temple & Cave

Kaas Plateau – A Valley of Flowers

Thoseghar Falls – Waterfalls of Satara


  1. Were there no other buildings inside the fort walls Anu? Residential quarters or otherwise? Is this the fort whose walls were climbed with the help of a monitor lizaed?

  2. Hello Anuradha! You have a lovely blog and I see you have traveled so extensively! I am going to be frequent visitor here!


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