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Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Citadel, Calais

Calais Citadel dominates the area West of the town, between Fort Risban and Fort Nieully. It dates back to the 16th Century, but has undergone many alterations in its long history, the majority of which were those implemented by the French military engineer Vauban. The large angular fort is surrounded by a water filled moat, which is crossed by two bridges leading to the East and West gates into the fort. A Demi-Lune triangular outwork is located in front of one of these bridges. The original buildings in the centre of the Citadel were destroyed during WW2 and the area has now been converted into a sports stadium. Fortunately, many of the original features around the edges have survived including the ornate guardhouses and gateways. Some tunnels and underground magazines also exist within the fort. The entire fort is open to the public at no cost and is an interesting place to stroll around.


The Citadel is open free of charge everyday.

Main entrance to the Citadel

The East Bastion

Looking towards the inner gatehouse
Inside inner gatehouse

Firing slits

East casemates, converted for modern use

The South-West inner bastion

1838 date on stone

Bastion and loopholed wall
Casemated firing cells
Entrances to two tunnels

View down the left tunnel
View down the right tunnel
Row of magazines

Inside a magazine

Larger magazine

'1821' above the magazine
Entrance to the bastion
Neptune's Gate, from the inside

Looking down to the demi-lune protecting the bridge

View of the North East Bastion

Inside the bastion

Centre of the demi-lune


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