Brimstone Hill Fortress

Brimstone Hill Fortress is one of the oldest and most historic sites in all of the Caribbean—in fact, in all of North and South America. It served as the "Gibraltar of the West Indies" since the British lugged cannons up the hill and fortified it against the French in the late seventeenth century. Today, this St Kitts National Park is one of the most visited places on the island, and visitors marvel that its cannons defended the island against the cannons of Fort Charles in Charlestown on the nearby island of Nevis. The Brimstone Hill Fortress is one of the most visited attractions on the island because the many large passenger ships on Caribbean cruises that dock at Port Zante in Basseterre all offer shore excursions to the site.

It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site in St Kitts that is recognized for its cultural, military, and historical significance. The fort and its massive fortifications are extremely well preserved and a wonderful example of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century military architecture. It also chronicles the history of slavery on the island and in the Caribbean. The slaves who were brought from Africa to work the sugar plantations built the fortress. Today, there are a number of gracious plantation inns housed in restored plantation great houses.

The St Kitts National Park and the hill on which the fortress is built lie on the southwestern coast of the island about fifteen miles from Basseterre at the foot of Mount Liamuiga. If you're not booked on organized tours, you can take a taxi from the capital city. You can also visit it on the scenic St Kitts Railway.

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