Vasai: A City Within a Fort
Just 70 kilometers away from present-day Mumbai, tucked away in the suburb of Vasai, lies a city from the 16th century. The Bassein or Vasai Fort was built by the Portuguese in 1536 and is spread over 110 acres of land. This was the commercial, political and military base of the Portuguese in the North West coast of India for nearly 300 years.
Home to 2400 Soldiers, 3000 residents, nobles and artisans, within this expansive fort was a whole township. There was a citadel, a church and chapel, a hospital, a granary, a college, a library, a town hall, a coin mint and a buzzing market place.