Castillo de San Marcos

What a nice day.

We spent the morning exploring the Castillo de San Marcos the Spaniards built to protect the town and waters surrounding St. Augustine.  They built it in the perfect spot with a commanding view of the area.  The history of the fort and town is somewhat interesting: The Spaniards founded the settlement as an outpost to protect their shipping lanes, claim the region for Spain and to subjugate the native peoples.  They did achieve their objectives, but over the years the fort (and the rest of Florida) changed hands several times before coming under American control.  Bottom line, what is now the state of Florida contributed little to the wealth of the Spanish or British empires and was more trouble than it was worth.  In addition, the town was sacked several times by pirates and once by the famous Captain Drake.

After visiting the fort, we walked around the town, had lunch at an excellent restaurant (the oldest in town) and eventually ended up at the lighthouse and museum.

In the late afternoon we returned to the coach and spent a quiet evening watching TV and planning activities for tomorrow.