Fort Barrington

Fort Barrington

The nearest anchorage is Deep Bay. If you are approaching from the water a couple of narrow footpaths will lead you to the base of Goat Hill. Watch out for manchineel trees, the sap is toxic and an extreme irritant.

Its a bit of a vertiginous climb to the ruins of the fort, so if you suffer at all, give this one a miss.
Views from the top are stunning, giving an indication of the value of placing a fort here.

A semicircular gun emplacement and powder magazine are still intact and there are internal stone steps through the lower interior, but not much recorded information remains.

Deep Bay itself is, contrary to its name a shallow harbour, and is the resting place of the barque “Andes”, a three masted steel merchant sailing ship, that sailed from Trinidad on 5th June 1905 with a cargo of 1,330 barrels of pitch to be used for the paving of roads in Chile. As there had been no Panama canal yet built, the route around the tip of South America was to sail first north-east over the Atlantic, thence across the South Atlantic with the trade winds to Cape Horn.

As the cargo had been stowed badly, it seems heat had developed through friction caused by rubbing, enough to cause smoldering. Capt. Rees Griffiths decided to put into Antigua, but the Harbour Master made the “Andes” anchor in Deep Bay, since she would have been a danger to shipping in St. John’s Harbour. When the hatches were opened to unload and inspect the cargo, the added air caused a conflagration. Her decks fell in and her rigging was consumed. The “Andes” sank bow first on June 9th and there she still lies. Today, over 100 years later, the wreck of the “Andes” is one of Antigua’s historical resources; Antiguans and visitors snorkel to explore her. The wreck is most interesting from the general ship construction point of view and for the prolific and varied fish and coral life.

The Marine Areas Act of 1972 protects the wreck. Under no circumstances can anything be taken away from the wreck, leave it intact for future Antiguans and visitors to enjoy!