Fort Napoleon is on top of a hill overlooking the harbor of Terre de Haut in Les Saintes. It is one of three forts forming a triangle around the bay. It was originally named Fort Louis, but this was taken by the British and destroyed. The British abandoned if and the French re-occupied it again, rebuilding it and naming it Fort Napoleon.
The defenses of the fort are very impressive. A 15’ ditch around the wall makes the walls 35’ tall built out of stone. There is only one way in or out. To get in any attacking force would have to span the 10’ wide wall then knock down the raised drawbridge all under musket fire from two rows of soldiers on the wall. Then they would have to charge through while being fired from a foot away through slits in the wall. The attack force would have to knock down the gate and be faced with fire from three rows of slits in front of them.
Now its inner building is a museum and much of the outside space is taken up by a botanical garden.
You are not allowed on top of the ramparts or in the space taken up by the gardens. These are a collection of cacti and local trees, all of which you can see growing wild on the islands.
When visiting the fort, try not to go when there is a cruise boat in the harbor, as it will be extremely crowded.
Fort Napoleon is old. In its time, it would have been almost impossible to take. It is still visited by thousands of people a year.