São Fernando Fort

Located in the parish of Santa Cruz, on the east coast of the Island of Madeira, the São Fernando Fort is a monument of great historical importance. It is a significant testimony of the archipelago's defence strategies throughout its History.

The São Fernando Fort is strategically positioned in an area overlooking Santa Cruz Beach. Its location allowed, therefore, the timely observation of potential threats to the defence of the region. It should be noted that, for a long time, Madeira was a target for corsair attacks. Fortifications such as this represented an essential role in protecting the population.

This fort was built in the 18th century. During the liberal struggles, it was eventually restored by sergeant-major Paulo Dias de Almeida and it was named 'São Fernando Fort' because of an old chapel dedicated to this saint that stood on this site. There are records that indicate that this small church no longer existed in the year 1820; instead, at that time, the guardhouse was next to another chapel, dedicated to Saint Lazarus, which no longer exists, either.

Take advantage of your visit to São Fernando Fort to get to know the vast heritage of the city of Santa Cruz, located just 18 kilometres from Funchal.


São Fernando Fort, located above Santa Cruz Beach, was built in the 18th century to defend the coastline of this region.

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