If you’re into military strategy, artillery and historical warfare, then Fort Delimara is truly the place for you. Located at Delimara point, the fort was one of a ring of forts and batteries that protected Marsaxlokk harbour, along with Fort Tas-Silġ, Fort San Luċjan and Fort Bengħajsa.
Fort Delimara was constructed between 1876 and 1878 as a flankless fortification. On its outskirts, it included a dry ditch and three counter-scarp galleries. The main gate was completed in 1881, as the date inscribed above it reads. On the inside of the gate are separate accesses to the Communication Passage, Casemates Passage and the Parade Ground. The latter is very large when compared to other Victorian fortifications and comprises several barrack blocks.
The fort’s original armament of six 38-ton RML guns was only superseded in size by the 100-ton guns of Fort Rinella and Fort Cambridge. Four of these guns are still in situ, being the last remaining examples in the world still standing on their original carriages and platforms.
In 1887, a re-armament with the new breech loading technology was proposed, consisting of one 9.2-inch Mk VI B.L. gun and two 6-inch Mk VI B.L. guns. New gun emplacements were constructed at Parade Ground level in 1891. By 1913, modification works on two new gun emplacements housing two 9.2-inch Mk X B.L. guns were ready as the new main armament of Fort Delimara.
Again, advancements in artillery technology forced the replacement of mounted guns and in 1938/39 the two 9.2-inch gun emplacements were modified to be armed with the smaller 6-inch Mk VII B.L. guns.
During the Second World War Fort Delimara was bombarded by enemy air attacks and fired its guns against mine-laying operations. After 1945, the fort remained in use until the abolishment of coastal defence throughout the British Empire in 1956. Upon Malta’s Independence on 21st September 1964, the fort was transferred to the local government.