St. Kitts & Nevis
Original Official Site of the
St. Kitts & Nevis
Department of Tourism
St. Kitts | Exploring
Its French name
simply means "lowland," a
description that must have been scratched onto a French sea chart
sometime during the late 1620s. In the 375 ensuing years there
have been many Basseterres, for earthquakes, floods, hurricanes,
fires, and invasions have all swept through this modest community.
Set before the dramatic backdrop of St. Kitts' lush green hills,
Basseterre today retains much of the elegant Georgian character
of Nelson's days.
The Treasury Building
The domed colonial building that stands right on the waterfront
is a reminder of the value of these islands as sugar colonies.
It is the Treasury Building, or customs house, and through its
arches passed virtually everything that arrived at or departed
from St. Kitts, including until recently
Today Basseterre's French heritage is not nearly so prominent
as its British colonial past. The centerpiece of the city's evocative
Georgian architecture is its Circus, a diminutive roundabout
modeled in proper Victorian patriotism after Piccadilly, in London.
In the middle of the Circus stands the bright green bronze of
the Berkeley Memorial Clock, an ornate, cast iron tower with
four clock faces and more than a little architectural decoration.
St. George's Anglican Church
St. George's, though christened Notre Dame in 1670 by the
French, was destroyed four times before it adopted its present,
Georgian style in 1869. In the graveyard, however, are stones
dating from as far back as the early 18th century.
Built in 1790 for slave auctions and council meetings, this
public square was officially named in 1983 to commemorate the
independence of the island Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis
from Great Britain.
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