During the 17th and 18th centuries, motley crews of pirates sailed the seas all over the world, looting, drinking rum and burying treasure! There were strongholds all over the world, and although famously associated with the Caribbean, there were many other locations favoured by these swashbuckling seafarers…..
- Clew Bay Ireland – The formidable Grace O Malley was the leader of a huge group of men who ruled the Irish coastline with fear. It was unusual in this day and age for a woman to be anything but a wife and mother, and although she was both, it didn’t stop her from making her name as a ruthless pirate queen, and the success of her fleet in the area was down to her determination.
- Madagascar – This large island off the coast of Africa became very popular with pirates in the late 17th It was perfect for pirates as it had good weather and a fresh water supply and was in an ideal location to intercept ships trading with India. One of the most famous pirates to base himself here was the Scottish Pirate Captain William Kidd. He was first appointed to tackle piracy but turned his back on that and became a pirate himself. In 2015 it was reported that Captain Kidd’s legendary treasure was believed to have been discovered on Madagascar.
- The Galapagos Islands – Of course the most famous visitor to the Galapagos islands is the scientist Charles Darwin, but hundreds of years before Darwin visited, the islands were discovered to be the perfect spot for the pirates to base themselves, as they were near enough to the mainland to carry out raids and far away enough to escape. Nowadays, tourists go on Galapagos Holidays to explore these fascinating islands and http://www.steppestravel.co.uk/galapagos-islands provide holidays and Galapagos cruises here to see what those early pirates and explorers saw here centuries ago. It is thought that the story of Robinson Crusoe was inspired by the Galapagos.
- Penzance Cornwall –The rugged coastline of Cornwall was perfect for smugglers and became very popular in the 18th At Gunwalloe Cove, there were a series of tunnels that led from the cove to the local church, and it is said that pirate coins can still be found amongst the rocks on the beach. Most of the Cornish Towns are linked with smuggling although most of the tunnels are now blocked, some are still being discovered. The history can be seen all around Cornwall. The Dolphin Inn at Penzance for example was a very popular meeting place for smugglers.