Priamar Fortress

Savona, Italy

The Priamar Fortress is a fortress occupying the hill with the same name above the port of Savona. The fortress was built in 1542 by the Republic of Genoa on a promontory where in medieval times was the nucleus of Savona, by design of architect Giovanni Maria Olgiati. However, traces of pre-Roman, Roman and Byzantine presences in the site have been excavated in the past centuries, and are now on display in Savona's Archaeological Museum.

In the 17th century the fortress received bastions designed by the Spanish Royal engineer Domenico Sirena, and in the 18th century were added the commissar's, officers' and Sibilla palaces. In order to create space for the new structures, edifices of the medieval Savona, including its cathedral (built in the 9th century over a pagan temple), were demolished.

In 1746, in the course of the War of Austrian Succession, it was stormed by the Piedmontese grenadiers. In 1820, after the annexion of Liguria to Piedmont, it became a prison. During the Risorgimento, Italian patriot Giuseppe Mazzini was jailed in the Priamar Fortress.

The fortress, which could house up to 500 prisoners, remained Italy's main military prison until 1903, when its role was taken by the castle of Gaeta.



Your name


Founded: 1542
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy

More Information


4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Roberto Green (2 years ago)
We had a lovely meal here, the waiting staff were excellent and the place had a lovely atmosphere.
Raffael W. (2 years ago)
A neat place and easily reached frim anywhere in Savona. Not crowded, so you really get to enjoy the fortress and its views. Always astonishing to see something this old yet in such good conditions. Respect to the keepers here. The view over the town, the Sea and the beach is just beautiful.
Let’s Discover Together (2 years ago)
Beautiful fort in the city of Savona. There is no entry ticket for this fort and it’s one of the most amazing places in the city of Savona. You can have a direct sea view from the top side of the fort. There is a beautiful art gallery also at the base of the fort. You need to walk a bit to explore this fort. In case you have plenty of time, it will not take more than couple of hours to explore everything in this fort. Follow us for more suggestions
Benje Slabbert (3 years ago)
Beautiful views of the ocean. A Beautiful historic site
LISA R (3 years ago)
An info board would be good and unfortunately the museum is closed. If the entrance wasn't free, it wouldn't be worth a visit.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Santa Maria in Trastevere

The Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere is one of the oldest churches of Rome. The basic floor plan and wall structure of the church date back to the 340s, and much of the structure to 1140-43. The first sanctuary was built in 221 and 227 by Pope Callixtus I and later completed by Pope Julius I. 

The inscription on the episcopal throne states that this is the first church in Rome dedicated to Mary, mother of Jesus, although some claim that privilege belongs to the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. A Christian house-church was founded here about 220 by Pope Saint Callixtus I (217-222) on the site of the Taberna meritoria, a refuge for retired soldiers. The area was made available for Christian use by Emperor Alexander Severus when he settled a dispute between the Christians and tavern-keepers.

The church underwent two restorations in the fifth and eighth centuries and in 1140-43 it was re-erected on its old foundations under Pope Innocent II.