Vasai Fort

Vasai Fort with Coolpad Cool 1

It’s hard to imagine today’s edifices lasting for over 400 years. Yet, Fort Bassein, better known as Vasai Fort due to its location in Vasai East, has managed exactly that. Though several parts of the fort are in ruins, many still retain their formidable aura. Back in 1535, the Portuguese built the fort to protect their capital, then named Fortaleza de São Sebastião de Baçaim or the Fort of St. Sebastian of Vasai. In 1739, the Marathas captured the fort under the leadership of Chimaji Appa and ruled it until 1818.

Vasai Fort

Vasai is only an hour’s bus ride away from Mulund, the last suburb of Mumbai city on the central line. And a brand new silver Coolpad Cool 1 in my possession for review provided the perfect excuse for making the trip. With the aid of its dual 13 MP back camera and a 4000 mAh battery that seems to last and last, I captured various facets of the vast fort complex, surrounding jetty and two beautiful, tranquil temples.

Shri Nageshwar Temple, Vasai
Shri Nageshwar Temple

We set off early on a Saturday morning to explore Vasai Fort and its treasures. After a long bus ride and a packed sandwich for breakfast, I whipped out my Coolpad Cool 1 to start taking pictures. Imagine my chagrin when I saw a multitude of photo shoots taking place in various corners of the fort – some appeared to be pre-wedding shoots while others were simply college kids in quest of a perfect profile picture. Some climbing and exploring however, led us to spots unmarred by other human presence.

Vasai Fort

If I found marvels when I looked up, I found them when I looked down as well. Beautiful carvings and inscriptions added character to the stone walls, ceilings and floor. I wish I knew what they meant. But I was glad the Coolpad Cool 1’s camera seemed capable of recording them with perfect clarity. The only negative was that the display went blank in harsh sunlight and I didn’t know what I was clicking.

Vasai Fort

Coolpad Cool 1 comes with LeEco software and I recognised the familiar interface, having reviewed the LeEco Le 2 before. One thing I love about this user interface is that photos get clicked very fast – no loss of time at all and much speedier than many other phones. The phone didn’t feel heavy either and I enjoyed its smooth corners and sturdy grip. We went down many trails and paths – some which led nowhere and others looped around to the same spots that we had left behind.

Just when we thought we were done with the fort, we’d spot yet another part, surprisingly intact even after all this time. We did see restoration work taking place in the fort as well. Tiny water bodies added to the beauty of the landscape – it would be a good idea to come here in the monsoons and see them overflow with mother nature’s richness.

Vasai Fort

The fort is replete with various species of birds, trees and a few flowers. We heard the calls of several birds but their identity was concealed by the foliage. The flowers were easier to capture. Here is a close-up using the Coolpad Cool 1, that I was quite satisfied with.

Purple flowers at Vasai Fort

Eventually, as all the fort structures began to resemble each other, we decided to go in search of the jetty we had heard of. Here, you can book group and individual boat rides for upwards of Rs 100 per adult but do enquire in advance. I wasn’t pleased by the amount of garbage in the water but it still made for a refreshing diversion. There is also a beach in Vasai which I plan to visit at a future date.

Jetty at Vasai

The Coolpad Cool 1 comes packed with many interesting photo and video effects such as slow motion, long exposure and GIF. You can add stickers of many kinds to your photos, both while clicking and during editing. I shall explore these features in depth in another review on my other blog but here is a panorama photograph of the fort.

Panorama view of Vasai Fort

While most of the photos in this post haven’t been edited, I had to add some light to the panorama photo because it was simply too dark. None of the panorama photos I tried clicking had sufficient visibility. We also spotted two lovely temples beside a lake adjoining the fort – Shri Nageshwar Mandir and Shri Vajreshwari Yogini Devi Mandir.

It was such a relief to rest our tired feet at the cool temple grounds after paying homage to the deities. A few dogs kept us company. Here is a beautiful door I spotted at one of the temples.

Temple door at Vasai

How to reach Vasai Fort, jetty and temples: Take a train to Vasai Railway Station and then a rickshaw from Vasai East. If coming from Mulund or Thane, you can board any ST bus to Vasai and alight at the Vasai Fort stop. The fort, temple and jetty area is perfect for a picnic and the sunset is said to be spectacular but try not to stay after dark.

Coolpad Cool 1 specifications

Coolpad Cool 1 Review

  • Display: 5.5”, IPS, FHD 1920 x 1080
  • RAM: 3GB/4GB
  • ROM: 32GB (non-expandable)
  • Camera: Dual 13MP AF rear; f/2.2, 8MP front
  • Sensor: Infrared controller,Gyroscope fingerprint,Accelerometer Proximity Sensor, Light sensor
  • OS: Android 6.0
  • Colours: Silver, gold
  • Battery: 4000mAh Stand by time up to 300H
  • Weight: 173g
  • Network: 2G/3G/4G
  • Chipset: MSM8976 1.8GHz Octa-core Adreno 510

Get it at Rs 13,999 on Amazon

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