Saint Thomas Tower

Marsaskala, Malta

Saint Thomas Tower is a large bastioned watchtower in Marsaskala. It was built above the shore on the seaward face of the headland of il-Hamriga in Marsaskala. It is a substantial fortification intended to prevent the landing of troops in the sheltered anchorages of Marsaskala Creek and St Thomas Bay. Construction of the tower was approved in July 1614, weeks after the raid of Żejtun, in which an Ottoman fleet managed to land at St Thomas Bay. The tower was named after a chapel dedicated to St Thomas which stood close to where the tower now lies.

The tower has very thick walls and has four pentagonal bastioned turrets projecting outwards on each corner. The tower's entrance was through a vaulted doorway with a wooden drawbridge. The drawbridge is still partially intact and it is the only original one to have survived in Malta. The tower is surrounded by a rock-hewn ditch.

After the De Redin towers were built, St Thomas had Żonqor and Xrobb l-Għaġin Towers in its line of sight, but these are now either in ruins or completely demolished.

In 1715, St Thomas Tower was reinforced by the addition of a battery on the seaward face. During the French blockade of 1798–1800, the tower was stormed and captured by Maltese insurgents.

The tower remained in use by the British until the 19th century. At some point, the tower was also used as a prison.



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Torri, Marsaskala, Malta
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Founded: 1614
Category: Castles and fortifications in Malta

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4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Annabel Desira (3 years ago)
Lovely interesting historic site. Would be great to see it open more often!
Mark Mallia (3 years ago)
Excellent cultural spot. Beautiful locality!
aldo ellul (3 years ago)
Excellent location but waited to long for our food and then when it arrived it some of the food was cold. To be honest I think they were short staff. Also the restaurant is nice and clean so we'll be giving it another go.
Victor Bonett (3 years ago)
Going through restoration. Will look good once finished
David Grixti (3 years ago)
Never lived near something this old before. Incredible piece of history.
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