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Things to Do in Charlotte Amalie, United States Virgin Islands, United States

Charlotte Amalie



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Charlotte Amalie, located on St. Thomas, is the capital and the largest city of the U.S. Virgin Islands, founded in 1666 as Taphus. In 1691, the town was renamed to Amalienborg after Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel, queen consort to King Christian V of Denmark-Norway. It has a deep-water harbor that was once a haven for pirates and is now one of the busiest ports of call for cruise ships in the Caribbean, with about 1.5 million cruise ship passengers landing there in 2004. Protected by Hassel Island, the harbor has docking and fueling facilities, machine shops, and shipyards and was a U.S. submarine base until 1966. The town has been inhabited for centuries. When Christopher Columbus came here in 1493, the area was inhabited by Island Caribs and Taíno. It is on the southern shore at the head of Saint Thomas Harbor. In 2010 the city had a population of 18,481, which makes it the largest city in the Virgin Islands Archipelago. Hundreds of ferries and yachts pass through town each week, and at times the population more than doubles.