Castle Island Bermuda and
Castle Island is located near the entrance of the Castle Harbor
in St. George's. A string of islands here are all collectively part of the Castle Islands group. The main island is some 3.5 acres in size.
Castle Island was earlier known as King's Island. Richard Moore, the first Governor of Bermuda who came to begin the first official British settlement in the island, built the King's Castle fort in 1612 in Castle Island. Known as the King's Castle Stone Fort, this was one of the first forts that he erected to protect the north-eastern coastline of Bermuda which he thought was the most vulnerable area.
The fort also guarded the Castle Roads which is the main water channel used by the vessels to enter the Castle Harbor. Today this is the oldest standing English fort in Bermuda. It is also the oldest stone fort in the whole of Western Hemisphere. The fort has a Captain's house built in 1621. This is the oldest home in Bermuda made with stone.
Road Map location
The fort at the Castle Island was built mainly to defend against possible Spanish attacks. In fact this is the only fort in Bermuda which came under enemy attack. In 1614, it fired at the two Spanish ships trying to enter the Castle Harbor. The ships fled without knowing that there was only one more cannonball left in the fort.
Next to Castle Island is Southampton Island where there is another historic fort known as the Southampton Fort. It was also built around the same time and opened by Nathaniel Butler, another Governor of Bermuda.
There is a small island opposite to Castle Island known as Brangman's Island. It was earlier known as the Moore's Island. The nearby Charles Island (of 3.5 acres size) is part of the Castle Islands chain. Here also there is a 17th century historic fortification known as the Charle's Fort.
One more fort close by is Devonshire Redoubt. All these are 17th century forts and were built to mainly protect the Castle Roads (the channel used by boats to enter Castle Harbor).
All these forts in Castle Island along with town of St. George's and the other forts in the parish are now part of UNESCO World Heritage site and known as 'Historic Town of St. George and Related Fortifications'. The islands are today part of Bermuda's Nature Reserves. They are great for hiking, bird watching or even picnicking.
How to reach Castle Island and the forts
There is no land connections to these islands. You can reach Castle Island and its chain of islands by boat. However, most of the forts here are not accessible to general public. Bus #10 and #11 come near Grotto Bay Beach Resort in Hamilton Parish. The operator Blue Hole Water Sports
operating from the resort premises offers boat rentals to visit the islands.
1) Check out Bermuda Forts
to know all about the historic forts in Bermuda
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