Nat­ural Attrac­tions — Islands

There have been two little-​known unin­hab­ited islands just off the coast and belong­ing to Bar­ba­dos. Today there remains only one of these small islands– Culpep­per Island.

Pel­i­can Island

Pel­i­can Island, aptly named after the Brown Pel­i­cans who used this small island as a nest­ing ground, was once off the west coast of Bridgetown and Fontabelle in St. Michael. It was said that dur­ing low tide it was pos­si­ble to wade over to the island, and in the event of high tide, jet­ties were taken. A quar­an­tine facil­ity was housed on this island specif­i­cally for sick crew and pas­sen­gers from ships, so as to con­tain com­mu­ni­ca­ble /​infec­tious dis­eases and pre­vent them from spread­ing to the main­land. Between 1956 and 1961, the Caribbean Sea between Pel­i­can Island and Bar­ba­dos was reclaimed and filled in dur­ing the time of the con­struc­tion of the Bar­ba­dos Port. Pel­i­can Vil­lage, a tourist attrac­tion by the Port fea­tur­ing unique Bar­ba­dian arts and craft, was named as a trib­ute to this lost island.

Culpep­per Island

The remain­ing island, Culpep­per, is located a lit­tle over 250 ft off Bar­ba­dos on the east­ern coastline.

It is in the Atlantic Ocean, and it is pos­si­ble to wade over to this island in low tide. Swim­mers are cau­tioned to be care­ful as the cur­rent here can be very strong. Named after the Culpep­per fam­ily who once owned this piece of land in the 18th cen­tury, this lit­tle island is also very close to another tourist attrac­tion and her­itage spot– Ragged Point Light­house. There is also a claim by mem­bers of the region’s indige­nous Lokono-​Arawak and Karifuna-​Carib tribes in March 2006 stat­ing that Culpep­per Island belongs to them. They were descen­dants of Princess Mar­ian, daugh­ter of the last Hered­i­tary Lokono Arawak Chief Amoro­ta­he­Haubariria (Fly­ing Harpy Eagle) of the Eagle Clan, and the Karifuna-​Carib ambas­sadors from the island of Dominica. Culpep­per Island is 220 ft x 75 ft and rises approx­i­mately 20 ft out of the water.


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