Fort Saint Angelo Malta - The Best Mobile Map and Guide Tool if you visit Malta!

Tekst Voorlezer
Tekst Voorlezer
Go to content
Air photo of the Fort Saint Angelo
Fort Saint Angelo

Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, Normans, the Angevines, the Aragonese and the Order of Saint John all contributed to the development of Birgu.

App info: In our app you will find the location, address, opening hours and admission / entrance fee of this spot. If you use the app, you will find additional information and news about this spot on this page.

Excavations have shown that from prehistoric times this location (Fort St. Angelo) has been a reinforced habitable area. The Temple of Astarte (3,200 - 600 BC) also stood here in the Bronze Age.

An Egyptian pink granite column and large ashlar blocks can still be found in the chapel of the Fort.

Castle Castrum Maris (castle by the sea) was probably built during the Arab occupation to protect the port area and its ships.

The castle consisted of an inner and outer department, a barbican (hidden outpost or passage) and four towers, one of which is in a D-shape. There were two chapels, one dedicated to St. Mary (current church of St. Anne) and one chapel dedicated to St. Angelo (later dedicated to the Birth of Our Lady). Part of this castle is integrated in the current fort.

From the time of Count Roger the Norman (1091), the castle was the residence of the feudal lords, who ruled Malta. The most famous Castellaan families that inhabited the castle were the Guevara and De Nava.

The mistress of Castellaan De Nava protested because she did not have the same status as the wife of Castellaan De Nava. Because Nava wanted to prevent his affair from becoming publicly known, he ordered two soldiers to send his mistress away.

The guards did not send her away but locked her up in the dungeon of the castle and then killed her. When De Nava heard this, he had the two soldiers killed. When opening a sealed room, the skeletons of the mistress and the two soldiers would have been found. No official documents can be found about this discovery.

The mistress now still roams around and is known as the Gray Lady. It is claimed that during the Second World War she would have saved soldiers from an air raid.

Documents show that in the period 1266-1283 the garrison consisted of 150 men and different weapons and that the castle already had two chapels in 1274. These chapels are still there.

When the Order of St. John came to Malta in 1530, Grandmaster L'Isle Adam settled in the castle and it became the Headquarters of the Order.

Subsequent Grandmasters continued to live in the castle until Jean de La Valette moved to a palace in Birgu.

It was the Order that each time reinforced the castle with the latest defence insights and made it an impregnable Fortress.
D'Homedes Bastion was built in 1536 to control the entrance of the Grand Harbour and part of the Marsamxett Harbour (near Fort Manoel). The dry ditch between the fort and Birgu (Vittoriosa) was also cut into a canal.

In 1547 a cavalier was built behind the D'Homedes Bastion and the Guirial Battery was built at sea level, named after commander Francesco de Guiral. The extensions were realized based on the design architect and military engineer Antonio Ferramolino. This addition also protected access to the Dockyard Creek.

Grandmaster Philippe Villiers de L'Isle-Adam (deceased in 1534), Piero de Ponte (deceased in 1535), Juan de Homedes y Coscon (deceased in 1553) and Claude de la Sengle (deceased in 1557) were buried in the chapel of St. Angelo. Their crypts were later moved to St. John's Co-cathedral.

In 1565 Malta was attacked by the Ottomans), this attack is known as "The Great Siege of Malta".

There are also ghosts of Ottoman soldiers who were executed during the Great Siege of 1565.

Perhaps the intervention in the period 1676 and 1690 was the most important and the largest intervention. Based on the plan of military engineer Carlos de Grunenburgh, parallel cannon batteries were built on four levels, with a view of the harbour.

This modification made the castle impregnable. The coat of arms of Grunenburgh, who also financially supported the modifications, is located above the main gate.

During the French occupation (1798-1800) the fort was fortified and had 80 guns, 48 ​​of which were aimed at the entrance to the Grand Harbour.

The fort also became the headquarters of the French army.

The fort also retained its military function in the British period.

Two battalions were stationed around 1800.

In 1860 a battery was modified to a gun battery for three 9-inch RML guns.

In 1903 the fort was transferred to the Royal Navy. The Royal Navy got its base in the Mediterranean Sea and the fort became a stone frigate and was named HMS Egmont.

In 1933 the name was changed to the HMS St Angelo.

A cinema for the men was added to the Fort and a water distillation plant was also added.

On drawings from that period you can clearly see that the fort was built as a ship e.g. the kitchen was mentioned as galley. During the Second World War, 3 Bofors guns were placed in the fort.

The Fort was hit 69 times between 1940 and 1943.

Opening hours
10:00 - 18:00

Last admission
Advice 45 minutes before closing
Ticket / admission fee

Adults (18+ yrs)
€ 10.00
Youth (12- 17 yrs)
€ 6,00
Children (6-11 yrs)
€ 4.00
Infants (1-5 yrs)Free
Seniors Citizen (60+ yrs)
€ 2.00
Concessions and Students
€ 6.00
Address and street / location can be found on our map, click on Guide in the menu bar and you will get a map with markers.
Book: Buy tickets for place of interest. sights, hop on hop off buses, exhibitions, safari, etc or book and tour.
Latest news and original website of the attraction / spot / advent
Additional information

This Fort Saint Angelo page is part of “The Malta Magazine”.

This magazine is for every resident and visitor to the country of Malta. But is also educational and for anyone interested in Malta.  The Malta Magazine highlights the past and present of specific subjects and/or places of interest with the help of extensive information and photos.

As a tool during your journey of discovery through Malta, you can use our information services free of charge. You can do this in two ways, via our website or our app depending on your operating system, Google Play or Apple Store. Both give you the same information.

“The Malta magazine” is the best, ultimate and most comprehensive magazine you can get of Malta.

The magazine is growing fast and will soon contain more than 350 interesting topics.

Find and discover interesting sights and discover the many historical secrets of the country Malta. Find all things to do and places of interest in your exploration.

“The Malta magazine” is also convenient whether you are walking, driving a car, or using the hop-on and hop-off bus trip, boat trip, etc.

“The Malta magazine” provides you with general information about the sights, Malta’s beauty, secrets, history and culture, its architecture, fortifications, etcetera and specific information as: what took place here?; When was it built and by whom?; What are the functions of all these.

“The Malta magazine” describes also religious subjects, museums, parks, places of interest, public toilets and much more useful information. Interesting texts set up by local experts and additional informative photos make this app distinctive.

“The Malta magazine” answers many questions and shows in an easy way to navigate way where the sights are located. A great landmap and citymap made specifically for you, is a great tool. You can immediately see where you are and where the sights are.

In this "Malta Magazine" you will find the location, address, opening hours and admission / entrance fee, general additional information and news about the spot.

Everything in “The Malta magazine” is easy to operate, without any knowledge and suitable for young and old.

“The Malta magazine” is free while you normally would pay for a guided tour, you may enjoy navigating through Malta on your own terms.

“The Malta magazine”  is constantly maintained about: attractions which are closed due to renovation, changed entrance fees or opening times, etc. This maintenance costs a lot of money. However, it has been decided not to include annoying advertisements. The “The Malta magazine” has no hidden costs.

The skillfielly texts are written by local experts and additional informative photos make  “The Malta magazine” information provision distinctive.
Back to content