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Take Your Pirate-Loving Kid to These Destinations Rich in Pirate History

by Aoife O'Riordan

Sep 18, 2023

© Marie-claire Lander | Dreamstime.com

Destinations / Caribbean

Kids love a good pirate story, so why not bring them to one of these destinations to search for buried treasure, discover the famed Blackbeard’s past and take part in a pirate-themed festival? These family-friendly destinations allow family travelers to enjoy the great outdoors while letting their pirate-loving kids experience a different side to the place.


Norman Island, British Virgin Islands

Said to be the inspiration behind Treasure Island, this island’s documented history dates back to when a Spanish galleon buried 55 chests of silver coins after the crew mutinied. While Tortolian residents have discovered most of the treasure, more pirate treasure is said to remain hidden on the island. Other fun pirate-themed experiences on the island include a meal at Pirate’s Bight, the only restaurant on Norman Island where visitors can enjoy Caribbean fusion-style cooking. Look for The Indians archipelago, as well, a great place to go snorkeling and spot fish and coral.


Fort Myers, Florida

Notorious pirate Jose Gasper established his pirate headquarters on Sanibel Island in the 19th century, and for more than 40 years, the pirate carried out pirate raids along West Florida. His name lives on today through Gasparilla Island and the famed Gasparilla Festival. Fort Myers is home to an array of pirate-themed experiences. Take a boat ride with Captain Brian on the Water, an award-winning tour bringing passengers through Sanibel and Captiva. Throughout the trip, Captain Brian shares tales of the past often involving pirates.


Kids will love a trip aboard Salty Sam’s Pirate Cruise, an exciting cruise for guests of all ages to immerse themselves in the world of pirates. The experience includes live cannon rounds, orchestrated mutinies against the captain, pirate games and other revelries.


North Carolina’s Crystal Coast

This destination holds many captivating tales of daring pirates across the centuries. Here, visitors can tour Blackbeard’s home, Hammock House, and learn about his exploits. Pirate stories are brought to life on the waterfront district of Beaufort with Beaufort Ghost Walk Tour, while the North Carolina Maritime Museum delves into the world of pirates and Blackbeard with artifacts from Blackbeard’s flagship, Queen Anne’s Revenge. In fact, the wreckage of this ship sits just offshore from Fort Macon State Park in Atlantic Beach.


This Sept. 23–24, don’t miss out on Beaufort’s annual pirate invasion, where pirate performers stage a reenactment of the Spanish attack of Beaufort.


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