The original name of the fortress was ĞRoca al mareğ; it was built by the Venetians, before the construction of the new walls. It was destroyed by the great earthquake of 1303 and took its final shape between 1523 and 1540. During the ottoman occupation, it served as a prison, in whose dungeons perished many revolutionists.
It is a venetian fortress, built for the protection of the breakwater. The wall of the city ends up in this fortress. It is built with massive rocks and has two floors. The ground floor has a vaulted roof with large skylights. Thick walls divide the entire place in 26 lodgings, used as the residences of the Castellan, the captains and the officials, as well as warehouses. The upper parts as well as the minaret' s foundations are Turkish.
The 13th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquites has carried out works of consolidation and restoration.
The fortress has housed the International Congress that was held with the occasion of the exhibition of Domenikos Theotokopoulos' (El Greco) works. Often, exhibitions and cultural shows are held there. On the second floor, there is a small theatre.
This archaeological place receives many visitors.