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Fort Rinella

St.Rocco Road, Kalkara, Island of Malta CSP11, Malta
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Fort Rinella in Kalkara,was built in 1878. This fort is not only a unique remnant of Malta's recent British colonial past, but it is also the world's first mechanical fort which enabled its small garrison to fire a monstrous 100-ton gun every six minutes. To be able to do this, the fort was equipped with a novel steam-driven hydraulic set-up that enabled the gun to traverse and depress and its ammunition to be hoisted and loaded mechanically. On visiting this fort in 1889, the great French writer Jules Verne described it as a marvel of the industrial age which would render Malta safe for ever. Some say that this is the place from where he got the idea of writing his famous novel a 'Voyage to the Moon', where a man is stuffed into a large projectile and fired from a large gun onto the moon!Originally, the 100-ton gun was built by Sir William George Armstrong of Newcastle in 1878, to equip a new class of Italian battleships - the Duilio class. This caused a serious stir between Britain and Italy which led to the former to obtain examples of the same gun to secure Malta and Gibraltar against a potential Italian seaborne attack.The Armstrong 100-ton gun has a calibre of 17.72-Inches (45cm). It is 35 feet long and has an overall weight of 156 tons making it the world's largest muzzle-loading cannon ever built. It used a quarter of a ton of gun powder to propel its monster shells up to a maximum range of eight miles. At that range it could pierce anything up to 21-inches of ship armour! The gun at Fort Rinella and another at Napier of Magdala Battery in Gibraltar are the sole surving examples today. The fort has recently undergone extensive restoration and improvement. A new 20-minute audio-visual outlining the history of the fort and its gun has also been added and is included in all guided tours.RE-Live History at Fort Rinella - Every afternoon from Monday to Saturday!Throughout the year, from Monday to Saturday at 14.00Hrs sharp, Fort Rinella is brought back to life complete with late 19th century Victorian soldiers who will take visitors on an animated tour around the fort. This tour combines excellent guiding with live and colourful historical re-enacting including military signalling, firing of rifles, bayonet practice, military cooking and more. Much use of original period equipment and weapons is made throughout this tour. All this goes to provide an enjoyable and long lasting experience to visitors.
  • Excellent88%
  • Very good8%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“ton gun” (127 reviews)
“re enactments” (39 reviews)
“guided tour” (62 reviews)
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Hours Today: 10:00 - 17:00
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
St.Rocco Road, Kalkara, Island of Malta CSP11, Malta
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Reviews (868)
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1 - 10 of 751 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

we visitied fort rinella whilst in malta myself and my wife had a great time there the wife didnt think she would enjoy such a place but loved it.the volunteers are very helpful and are very happy to talk about anything to do with the...More

Thank Sean R
Reviewed 1 week ago

It's best to get the bus here, I walked from the three cities and there's not much to see on route. The fort itself has informative and entertaining guides who will answer any questions regarding the fort and also do demonstrations with rifles from the...More

Reviewed 1 week ago

An excellent site but expect to spend 3-4 hours if you got to all of the talks and demonstrations. Guides were excellent - Ayrton and Stephen in our case. Opportunity to fire an antique rifle and fire a cannon. Very interesting Fort with a large...More

1  Thank 6mith
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Although only a small attraction it is well preserved and the uniformed guides are excellent. They are always around to answer any questions and although some of them struggle a bit with their English remember you are in Malta not England. The preservation and restoration...More

1  Thank Q3582BOdavid
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This Fort is well worth a visit. When we arrived there were only us and another family in the Fort and Antoine informed us we would be informed over when displays would happen. We were! and the young men along with Antoine spoilt us with...More

1  Thank jillygins
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

What an excellent place to visit. Our tour guide was excellent and with plenty of back ground knowledge to draw on he really made the visit even more interesting.

Thank edd200
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Fort Rinella turned out to be the highlight of of our trip to Malta. The live enactment (currently starting at 2 pm) is a must (if you miss it the fort is like most other museums). You get to fire a musket (5€) and up...More

Thank Henrik L
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We spent the afternoon in Fort Rinella having driven from Marsaskala. This is a great afternoon out. The guys at the Fort are extremely knowledgeable and very helpful. The demonstrations are well put together and are packed with information. You can also fire and original...More

Thank KatieB220970
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We just went to have a look and this is simply a hidden gem and just amazing! Is worth the money and time to go and see it a - little hidden historical gem of the island

Thank Jonathan B
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

I was very impressed with fort Rinella, it was very interesting and informative, the staff were very knowledgeable entertaining and helpful, definitely worth a visit!

Thank pconz888
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Questions & Answers
1 November 2015|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from yulius888 | Property representative |
Once a year on May 5th or closest Sunday. A 20 kilogram blank charge is fired but it is loud enough
Google Translation
18 September 2015|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from Mario F | Property representative |
Yes 80% of the fort is accessible to wheelchair users. please do not hesitate our staff at the gate to help you out if you need to. our soldiers will also be very happy to assist you once you reach the fort.
15 February 2015|
AnswerShow all 8 answers
Response from Mario F | Property representative |
Thank you for your query. Yes most of the fort is accessible to wheelchairs. The only parts which are not are the undergrounds.The historical re-enactments are held in an open arena so they are accessible too. we have... More