Air photo of Fort Manoel
Marsamxett harbour was one of the two most important ports around Valletta in the 16th century.
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The island of l'Isolotto is in the harbour. The Order of Saint John realized that this island could be taken by the enemy and hence attacks on Valletta could be carried out.
During the reign of Grandmaster António Manoel de Vilhena, the Order of Saint John commissioned the construction of this star shaped Fort with baroque architecture. The Fort was designed by the military engineers Tigné and Charles François de Mondion and was realized in the period 1723 to 1733. Mondion died in 1733 and is buried under the chapel of the Fort. The design is square with a pentagonal bastion on every corner, which looks like a star. The island was named Manoel Island.
The Fort was first used in 1798 during the French invasion and served until the Second World War during which it was badly damaged. Reconstruction of the destroyed chapel was completed in 2009. Restoration of the Fort is still in full swing.
Not open to the public / no entry
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The restored gate.
A good overview of the construction of the fort and the ditch.
The ditch still in full restoration.
The fortress inside.
The chapel inside.
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