History Of Antigua: Shirley Heights And Lord Nelson's DockyardExplore > Antigua and Barbuda > History Of Antigua: Shirley Heights And Lord Nelson's Dockyard
Among other historic moments, visit the site where the British defeated the French.
Learn the history of some of the most important places in Antigua, while taking in some of the best views on the island!
This private tour includes:
- Round trip transportation from the cruise ship pier or your hotel
- Lots of great info on Antiguan culture & history
- Numerous photo opportunities
- Block House at Shirley Heights
- The Lookout
- Interpretation Centre
- Nelson's Dockyard
Your private tour departs from Redcliffe Quay, the historic shopping district located on the south side of St. John's. Once used as the slave-trading area for the town, it now consists of restored warehouses and old buildings painted in a rainbow of colors. Although the area has been redone to attract shoppers--there are all manner of shops, from novelty stores selling local wares to boutiques carrying the trendiest clothing--it still retains a sense of history.
Continuing on, we'll visit Block House at Shirley Heights, Antigua's famous military complex. Shirley Heights is divided into three sections: Block House, the easternmost part of the military complex that was designed as a place of last refuge; The Ridge and Artillery Quarters (part of which were used, after the army left, as an insane asylum); and The Lookout, which provides the best view in Antigua. Today, the entire complex is mainly in ruin, except The Lookout, which has been turned into a restaurant. Regardless, this is still a great place to visit, both for the history and for the great views it affords of the island.
Our next stop is the Interpretation Centre, where you'll be treated to a visual and audio show of Antigua, before continuing on to Nelson's Dockyard. At the Interpretation Centre, not only will you get an informative presentation about Antigua, you may also get a view of the Eric Clapton House!
Now, we're on to Nelson's Dockyard, named after the victor of the battle of Trafalgar, Admiral Lord Nelson. Nelson, who was based at English Harbour from 1784 to 1787, was senior captain at only 27 years of age and became the temporary commander-in-chief of the Leeward Islands for a short time. Enjoy a 30-minute guided tour here and visit the many restored buildings, which now house modern facilities, yet still reflect the naval heritage of English Harbour. This is a place full of history and, although private yachts now replace naval vessels in the harbour, it remains a favorite port for those making the long Atlantic crossing.
Before returning to the cruise ship pier or your hotel, we'll head to a village bar to enjoy a local fruit drink.
- The price of this tour does not include the $8 per person entrance fee into the National Park (Shirley Heights and the Interpretation Centre).
Days offered: 7 days a week