The tower-fortress was built in the second half of the 14th century of local limestone. Tower-strongholds were built by vassals to protect roads and waterways and to protect themselves against peasant uprisings. Construction of such tower-strongholds increased after the failed St. George's Night uprising by peasants in 1343.

In 1986, the fortress was restored under the leadership of Vao sovkhoz. Exhibition on the I floor introduces the history of Vao Tower-Fortress and Manor, and the surrounding villages. The II floor is a medieval dwelling that includes the washing area (place for washing hands), and dansker (dry toilet). The current furnishing imitates the pristine appearance of the room. The windows are of beautiful stained glass. The staircase in the wall leading to the cellar adds mysticism to the place. The III floor is enlivened by paintings created by the artist E.Veermäe which depict people in medieval clothing.

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The Church of the Holy Cross

The church of the former Franciscan monastery was built probably between 1515 and 1520. It is located in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Rauma. The church stands by the small stream of Raumanjoki (Rauma river).

The exact age of the Church of the Holy Cross is unknown, but it was built to serve as the monastery church of the Rauma Franciscan Friary. The monastery had been established in the early 15th century and a wooden church was built on this location around the year 1420.

The Church of the Holy Cross served the monastery until 1538, when it was abandoned for a hundred years as the Franciscan friary was disbanded in the Swedish Reformation. The church was re-established as a Lutheran church in 1640, when the nearby Church of the Holy Trinity was destroyed by fire.

The choir of the two-aisle grey granite church features medieval murals and frescoes. The white steeple of the church was built in 1816 and has served as a landmark for seafarers.