Vasai was the main naval base and ship-building centre of the Portuguese.The Portuguese settled here because they were shrewd enough to recognize the importance of Bassein as a strategic place on western coast.
Vasai fort was established by the Portuguese as the headquarters of their Indian operations in 1534 and centre of their operations until 1739. With this as the main base, they built other smaller forts such as the Castella de Aguada, and strong houses in many of the islands in what is now Pakistan.
In the 18th century, the fort was attacked by the Maratha army under Peshwa Baji Rao's brother Chimaji Appa, and fell in 1739 after a three year long campaign.
Portuguese stayed here from 1535-1739. Marathas ruled from 1739-1818.
After that British won it.
The Portuguese buildings inside the fort are in ruins, although there are enough standing walls to give a good idea of the floor plans of these structures. In particular, many of the arches have weathered the years remarkably well. They are usually decorated with carved stones, some weathered beyond recognition, others still displaying sharp chisel marks.
Three chapels inside the fort are still recognisable. They are typical of 17th century Portuguese churches. The southernmost of these has a well preserved barrel vaulted ceiling.
Besides all the wonderful structures one should not miss observing the wonderful nature that has taken over the dilapidated parts of the fort. It is a great place to observe butterflies, birds, plants and reptiles.
Holy Name of Jesus church (also known as Jesuits church - but currently known to local people as Gonsalo church) which is being renovated by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) . Sadly, the side walls which have been renovated (plastered) have totally lost their historic touch and the old world charm.
The fort is often used for shooting Bollywood film scenes. The films shot here include Josh, Khamoshi, Ram Gopal Verma's Aag etc.
Address/How to Reach
Reaching this place takes about Half Hour from Vasai Station (West), one Need to get Auto which goes via
many small villages like Vasai Papdi, Tam Talav (Talao), then Comes Chimaji Appa Ground Next to Bassein Bus Depot, Next is the very Famous Vasai Court (Navghar Court) and Still from there 10 mins is Vasai Killa (Which means FORT).