Built by the British in 1932, Jaigad Fort in old British records is referred to as ‘Zyghur’; it was built as a coastal fortification at the tip of a peninsula in Ratnagiri District in Maharashtra. Nestled on the cliffs above, the fort overlooks the bay formed at the point where the Shastri River flows into the Arabian Sea.
Both the fort and its lighthouse offer a spectacular view of the ocean and the ships that sail by on the Arabian Sea. The Jaigad lighthouse is considered unique because it is made entirely out of cast iron.
The fort is surrounded by a deep moat on the side not facing the cliff. While the fort is spread over 13 acres, in the middle of it lie the palace of Kanhoji Angre (the first notable chief of the Maratha Navy who was labeled a pirate by foreign forces), a Ganpati temple and a 70-foot-deep well. There is a 100-foot-deep well nearby as well. These wells were constructed for potable water.
Though the fort lies abandoned and in ruins in many places, it is apparently a protected monument. An ASI board warns against damaging the property but it is obvious that people pay no attention to it. This piece of history is badly in need of maintenance.