Founded by the Spanish in 1565, it is the oldest settlement in North America, and retains a distinct old-world European flavour. Some of its attractions include the Castillo de San Marcos, a fort built by the Spanish as a stronghold for their North American empire in the late 1500’s, and the former Ponce de Leon and Alcazar hotels, built by Standard Oil tycoon Henry Flagler in the late 1800’s. There are also cobbled streets with many heritage buildings dating from as early as 1703, when the town was burned to the ground by the British after an unsuccessful siege of the Castillo.
We were fortunate to get a mooring buoy close to the Bridge of Lions and just off the waterfront promenade, which allowed us privacy while enjoying the ambiance of the city. We had further good luck when it turned out that the sailing vessel Bounty (a replica of a square rigger built for the 1962 movie ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’) would be visiting and docked at our marina during our stay.
We hope you enjoy the pictures of this great little place.
Next stop, Fernandina Beach.