St John's, Antigua and Barbuda Tourist Attractions
Resting above the harbor, brightly painted 19th C homes line the streets of Antigua's capital of St John's.30,000 people or over a third of Antigua's population live in the island's commercial center which was founded in the early 18th C.The harbor's deep waters allow passenger ships to dock at Heritage Quay, a favorite with cruise ship passengers, and the more rustic Redcliffe Quay, where shops, restaurants and galleries inhabit restored stone and wooden structures.
St John's Cathedral
Originally concecrated as a wooden structure in 1683, St John's Cathedral was rebuilt twice. In 1745 the church was rebuilt in stone, then again in 1847 after that structure fell due to the 1843 earthquakes. The current interior is faced with pitchpine. Local lore states the carved figures of St John the Baptist and St John the Evengelist originally adorned the masts of one of Napoleon's ships.
The Botanical Gardens in St John's span several acres/hectares and display flora native to the island. It is also a nice area to enjoy some shade and relax.
The British built Fort James in 1739 to guard against French invasion. The walls and some cannons are still in good condition.
Miramar Sailing offers sailing excursions and charters. Groups are small with four to six people and very relaxed. Popular excursions last from three to six hours with a lunch, snorkeling and swimming. A variety of sailing options are on offer to individuals or families.
The Court House in St John's was built in 1750, but damaged by earthquakes in 1843. It is no longer used as the seat of government but is now home to the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda.
Museum of Antigua and Barbuda
The Museum of Antigua and Barbuda interprets the history of Antigua and Barbuda from their geological origins to their present political independence. Housed in the museum is a full-scale replica of an Arawak dwelling, as well as portraits of Sir Joshua Reynolds, King George III and Queen Caroline.The museum is located in the former Court House in St John's.
Fort Barrington, built in 1780, once protected the southern entrance of St John's Harbour. Its ruins sits atop the promontory that juts out at the northern end of Deep Bay. Guided tours of St John's include a visit to Fort Barrington.
The colonial-style Government House in St John's is the official residence, with a Georgian dining room, and offices of the governor-general of Antigua. It was built in the 17th C. The landscaped grounds are open to the public.
Redcliffe Quay, once the center of the slave trade in Antigua, is now a refurbished area of St John's with shops and restaurants. Buildings and warehouses have been restored and house local establishments that cater largely to tourists.
The cenotaph in St John's is a memorial to those who died during the two world wars.
George Westerby Memorial
The George Westerby Memorial was erected in 1888 in memory of Reverend George Wall Westerby, Moravian bishop of the West Indies.
The public market on the harbor in St John's is divided into areas for fruit, vegetables, fish and meat. It is especially busy on Fridays and Saturdays.
The litte Rat Island lies in the harbor of St John's.
Visitors can take a tour of Antigua's beaches and historical sites on a Segway with Segway of Antigua and Barbuda. These are guided tours that operate at a leisurely pace and depending on the package may include a picnic lunch, as well as transportation to and from the starting point.