under the command of D. João III in 1557 and completed in 1645 by D.
João IV, who considered it the main key to the Kingdom through the sea,
the Peniche fortress area has been used in several ways, according to
the needs and historical changes of each period. Military square of
vital strategic importance until 1897, shelter for Boer refugees from
South Africa in the early 20th century, dwelling for German
and Austrian prisoners during World War I, political prison of the
dictatorial Estado Novo (New State) from 1934 to 1974, temporary
lodging of Portuguese families from the ancient ultramarine colonies in
1974 and, since 1984, housing the Museu Municipal (City Museum), the
Peniche Fortress assumes special relevance as it is an important
document of a local and national historical chronology.
The Peniche fortress is a National Monument since March 1938.
Ancient Plant of the fortress