Thursday, 31 January 2013

Spotlight St. Thomas - Blackbeard's Castle

Blackbeard's Castle is one of five National Historic Landmarks in the U.S. Virgin Islands. It is located in the city of Charlotte Amalie, on the island of St. Thomas. Built in 1679 by the Danes as a watchtower to protect the harbor, it was originally called Skytsborg Tower (meaning gun tower). It is located at the highest point on Government Hill.

Danish soldiers used Skytsborg as a vantage point to spot enemy ships. It is not known what year Skytsborg Tower took on the name of Blackbeard's Castle, but the infamous Edward Teach, commonly known as Blackbeard, did sail the Caribbean waters in the early 18th century. It has become part of the lore of the island that he used the tower as a lookout for his own purposes of piracy. It was the centerpiece of a private residence for many years, but now is surrounded by a small hotel (The Inn at Blackbeard's Castle), a restaurant and a pool.
The restaurant was closed in 2007. There is now a snack bar which is open when the grounds are open for tours.

Address: Lille Taarne Gade, Charlotte Amalie
Hours: Tours available when cruise ships are in port
Admission: US$12 - US$20

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