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  Columbus sighted Antigua in 1493 and named it Santa Maria de la Antigua after a miraculous statue of the Virgin Mary in Seville Cathedral. The British colonized the island in 1632, cleared the forests, planted sugarcane, and imported African slaves. They built numerous fortifications, turning the island into their most secure base in the Caribbean. Along with the neighboring island, Barbuda, Antigua became an independent nation in the British Commonwealth in 1981. Antigua boasts of  ‘365 beaches—one for each day of the year’ and heavily promotes tourism to those beaches. It is an important regional transport hub and major yachting center. The 18th century English Harbor and Lord Nelson’s Dockyard make this island of interest to devotees of naval history. During Antigua Sailing Week, at the end of April and beginning of May, the annual world-class regatta brings many sailing vessels and sailors to the island.

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WORLD HERITAGE SITE




Antigua Naval Dockyard

Antigua’s coastline is heavily indented with coves and bays
Antigua’s coastline is heavily indented with coves and bays
Many sheltered bays are used as harbors
Many sheltered bays are used as harbors
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Blockhouse Hill on Shirley Heights, an 18th century fortification
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Blockhouse Hill on Shirley Heights, an 18th century fortification
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–These restored buildings served as a lookout and gun battery
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–These restored buildings served as a lookout and gun battery
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Remains of the Officers’ Quarters, 1787
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Remains of the Officers’ Quarters, 1787
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Cactus and flowers side by side on Blockhouse Hill
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Cactus and flowers side by side on Blockhouse Hill
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–A single cannon amidst the ruins
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–A single cannon amidst the ruins
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Seal of His Royal Highness
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Seal of His Royal Highness
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–The views from Blockhouse Hill are spectacular
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–The views from Blockhouse Hill are spectacular
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Mamora Bay from Blockhouse Hill
SHIRLEY HEIGHTS–Mamora Bay from Blockhouse Hill
Weeds? Ferns?
Weeds? Ferns?
LOOKOUT POINT–From nearby Lookout Point, there are sweeping views of the island
LOOKOUT POINT–From nearby Lookout Point, there are sweeping views of the island
LOOKOUT POINT–The dry, scrubby character of Antigua is evident
LOOKOUT POINT–The dry, scrubby character of Antigua is evident
LOOKOUT POINT––Looking down at English Harbour and Falmouth Harbour
LOOKOUT POINT––Looking down at English Harbour and Falmouth Harbour
LOOKOUT POINT–Dow’s Hill Interpretation Center near Lookout Point
LOOKOUT POINT–Dow’s Hill Interpretation Center near Lookout Point
LOOKOUT POINT–A multi-media show inside gives the island’s history from the Indians...
LOOKOUT POINT–A multi-media show inside gives the island’s history from the Indians...
LOOKOUT POINT–...to Columbus.
LOOKOUT POINT–...to Columbus.
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is named for Lord Horatio Nelson who served here
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is named for Lord Horatio Nelson who served here
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is the only existing Georgian dockyard in the world and is a World Heritage Site
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is the only existing Georgian dockyard in the world and is a World Heritage Site
ENGLISH HARBOR–Fort Berkley, begun in 1704 on the peninsula was the Harbour’s first line of defense
ENGLISH HARBOR–Fort Berkley, begun in 1704 on the peninsula was the Harbour’s first line of defense
ENGLISH HARBOR–Dating from 1743, the Dockyard began being restored in the 1950’s
ENGLISH HARBOR–Dating from 1743, the Dockyard began being restored in the 1950’s
ENGLISH HARBOR–Stone pillars along an 18th century berth
ENGLISH HARBOR–Stone pillars along an 18th century berth
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is still an active docking area for sailboats and yachts
ENGLISH HARBOR–The Dockyard is still an active docking area for sailboats and yachts
ENGLISH HARBOR–But watch where you sit!
ENGLISH HARBOR–But watch where you sit!
ENGLISH HARBOR–Pillars and an 18th century building, now the Admiral’s Inn
ENGLISH HARBOR–Pillars and an 18th century building, now the Admiral’s Inn
ENGLISH HARBOR–Restored quarters of the sailors
ENGLISH HARBOR–Restored quarters of the sailors
ENGLISH HARBOR–Sundial
ENGLISH HARBOR–Sundial
ENGLISH HARBOR–Capstans
ENGLISH HARBOR–Capstans
ENGLISH HARBOR–Anchor
ENGLISH HARBOR–Anchor
ENGLISH HARBOR–and a stubby cannon
ENGLISH HARBOR–and a stubby cannon
ENGLISH HARBOR–
ENGLISH HARBOR–
ENGLISH HARBOR–The restored buildings now house trendy little shops
ENGLISH HARBOR–The restored buildings now house trendy little shops
ENGLISH HARBOR–The officers’ kitchen, from Lord Nelson’s day...
ENGLISH HARBOR–The officers’ kitchen, from Lord Nelson’s day...
ENGLISH HARBOR–...is today a bakery
ENGLISH HARBOR–...is today a bakery
ST. JOHN'S–The Dockyard Market is supported by pillars painted in Antiguan themes by art students
ST. JOHN'S–The Dockyard Market is supported by pillars painted in Antiguan themes by art students
ST. JOHN'S–Heritage Quay, in the  capital, St. John’s, is a convenient shopping area
ST. JOHN'S–Heritage Quay, in the capital, St. John’s, is a convenient shopping area
ST. JOHN'S–Small shops with a variety of merchandise lure the tourists
ST. JOHN'S–Small shops with a variety of merchandise lure the tourists
ST. JOHN'S–The bright skies and vivid colors of St. John’s...
ST. JOHN'S–The bright skies and vivid colors of St. John’s...
ST. JOHN'S–...are visible wherever one looks.
ST. JOHN'S–...are visible wherever one looks.
ST. JOHN'S–
ST. JOHN'S–
ST. JOHN'S–Mysterious doors...
ST. JOHN'S–Mysterious doors...
ST. JOHN'S–...and eye-popping colors.
ST. JOHN'S–...and eye-popping colors.
ST. JOHN'S–The locals, hanging out on a street corner
ST. JOHN'S–The locals, hanging out on a street corner
ST. JOHN'S–And a heron, peaceful in the setting sunlight
ST. JOHN'S–And a heron, peaceful in the setting sunlight
Good advice!
Good advice!