Fort of Saint Benedict

The Fort of Saint Benedict was built in 1708 by the then Governor of Madeira, Duarte Pereira Sodré, to defend the population from pirate attacks.
There are references from 1815 relating to this fort, which at that time was in ruin.
In 1916 recovery and beautification work started, the results of which can be seen today on the road leading up to the village of Ribeira Brava. It is a small circular tower, covered by a crenulated terrace with a guardhouse. The main façade, facing north, has a portal the opens into a Roman arch, topped by national inscriptions and weapons. On the seaward side a small niche containing an image of Saint Benedict can be found.
In 1920 this small fort was leased to the local Municipal Council to serve as a prison. Today, perfectly adapted to the visual context of the village, the fort houses a Tourist Information Centre.