Welcome to the Dongri Fort, or as the locals call it, the “Irmitri Fort” – a historic site located in the bustling city of Mumbai, India. This fort has seen it all, from battles to feasts, and even a statue of Chimaji Rao Appa!
Legend has it that the Portuguese built this fort after realizing the strategic importance of the area, and named it the “Dharavi Fort.” It witnessed several battles during its heyday and sadly, it’s in ruins now. But don’t let that dampen your spirits, because this place is still worth a visit.
To get here, hop on the Bhayander-Uttan bus and alight at the “Dharavi Devi Road” stop. You’ll spot the “Belan Mauli Church” nearby, which was built by the Portuguese. Keep walking and you’ll come across the Dharavi Devi temple, and then a rock-cut mountain to your right. Fun fact: the Portuguese used the rocks from this mountain to build the Vasai fort and churches in Goa during 1536-1600.
Further up the path, you’ll reach the hilltop where the ruins of a bastion containing the office of the Portuguese still remain. From here, you can take in the breathtaking 360-degree view of the surroundings – the Arabian Sea to the West, Vasai Fort to the North, the Borivali National Park to the East, and Essel World and Water Kingdom to the South.
But wait, there’s more! This fort is also famous for its Yellow Basalt mines, which were used to build the buildings in Goa. And did you know that in May 1737, a new Viceroy Mr. Kaddin attacked the Dharavi fort just three days after arriving? The Marathas and the Portuguese continued to battle it out until the fort fell into the hands of the Marathas in 1739.
If you’re planning a trip to the Dongri Fort, October is the best time to visit. You can get here via Mumbai Central Railway Station, Mumbai Airport, or by taking National Highway 48. Bus Nos. 1 and 4 run every 15 minutes between Bhayander Station and Uttan, with Bus No. 1 dropping you near the garden on the fort peak. After exploring the fort, head down towards the Church and board the same bus from the Dharavi junction bus stop to reach Bhayander. The distance from Dharavi fort to Dharavi junction is around 2.5 kilometers.
So what are you waiting for? Grab your sense of adventure and get ready to explore the Dongri Fort – a place where history, battles, and natural beauty come together!