Columbus discovered St Kitts in 1493, naming it St. Christopher after himself. Oldest of the British West Indian settlements, St. Kitts is proud of its title, “Mother Colony of the West Indies”, which is earned by sending out colonizing parties out to other islands.  St Kitts is 65 square miles and uses the Eastern Caribbean (EC) dollar. Be sure which exchange is being used since most places quote in EC dollars. Taxis are readily available, but establish the rate and currency in advance or you may find you are paying double.


The harbor of Basseterre, the capital, has the look of an old print. The pier is where inter-island boats come in and their produce is sold right on the dock. The most popular beaches on the island are the pleasant white sands of an area know as Frigate Bay, and the black sand beach at Dieppe Bay.  The literal highpoint of all is Mt Misery, which soars some 4,000 feet into the tropical sky.  On any tour, you will see Brimstone Hill, “The Gibraltar of the West Indies,” ten miles from Basseterre. This is one of the most important and impressive historical monuments in the West Indies.


Caribelle Batik offers splendid design right off the drawing board and has a shop at Romney Manor near Brimstone Hill and a shop at the circus right in town, which has everything from batik shirts and dresses to wall hangings. Other shops for duty free items are: Cellar Shops for hand-embroidered shirts, Heyloger’s Jewelry Store for the gold and silver, the Kittian Kitchen for all the spices and aromas of the West Indies. Make sure to comparison shop as you may find varying prices.