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Going inside forbidden territory on El Galeon ship

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Updated: 5/23/2013 12:34 pm
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- A replica of the ship that carried St. Augustine's founding families has sailed back into the historic city.

The Spanish flag is flying high and Action News got a sneak peak inside a 17th Century Galeon. Action News discovered the ins and outs of the 170 foot authentic ship. It was built just three years ago, but has already sailed through Europe, Asia and North America where it now sits in the marina at St. Augustine.  A familiar destination for a Galeon ship, which brought the city's founder to dry land in 1564.

"Pedro Menendez Avilez came here with 25 families and he brought them here to settle down, create a little village that later on would grow into the town of St. Augustine," said the ship's Official Diver, Ulises Custodio.

They defeated the French to take the land, and probably had a little help from a hidden treasure below the deck.
It's an artillery room, now filled with 12 replica canons, used to defend themselves while out at sea from the pirates looking to steal their cargo.  The strategic planning was discussed in the Noble Room. It's also known as forbidden territory, even today, but Action Newa got inside.

"No one on the crew was allowed to go in there, not even the captain unless he was invited," said Custodio.

One piece of authenticity that visitors might find intriguing is the steering, which is exactly what was used on the Galeon centuries ago. Custodio described his experience with is sayin "It just transports you back to 16th century."

The ship will be in the City Marina for another two weeks then it heads to Jacksonville, New York and then will travel all the way back to Spain.
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