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The Caribbean Islands lie southeast of the Gulf of Mexico and the North American mainland, east of Central America, and north of South America, and are largely situated on the Caribbean plate.
The entire region comprises the Caribbean Sea, its surrounding coasts, and the Caribbean islands. The Caribbean has more than 700 islands, islets, reefs, and cays.
Caribbean islands are a massive archipelago in the far west of the Atlantic Ocean. The Caribbean was first inhabited by indigenous people of South America since at least 6000 BC, then they were invaded by a stronger tribe known as Caribs. When the Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, French, Danish, and British arrived the Caribs’ population steeply declined by enslavement, labor, and diseases. The islands are known for many historical battles and quite a few pirate stories.
The Caribbean islands are sometimes also known as the West Indies. Cristopher Columbus went on a long journey to the Indies (Asia) to find another route there, instead, he reached the Caribbean. On account of Columbus’ mistake, the Caribbean was named the West Indies.
Caribbean islands are blessed with incredible scenery and have amazing tropical weather. It has some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. The Caribbean region is also a major attraction for tourism.
After reading the interesting facts about the Caribbean region, also check facts about Providence Rhode island and Easter Island facts.
The Caribbean is one of the most beautiful places in the world, attracting many tourists. There are several interesting and fun facts about these islands which make them a more exciting place to visit.
The Caribbean has 700 islands, and Haiti is the poorest country in the LAC (Latin America and the Caribbean) region and among the poorest countries in the world. Navis, Jamaica, Barbados, and Aruba are among the beautiful islands in the Caribbean.
In many places, people experience more than two seasons, however, in the Caribbean region, people experience only two seasons, that is, dry that runs from mid-December through to mid-April, and rainy (or wet) that runs from mid-April through to mid-December.
Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean. It is larger than all the other Caribbean islands combined and around 75% of the Caribbean population lives in Cuba, the Dominican Republic, or Haiti.
In earlier times, when English sailors wanted to navigate to the West Indies from England, they used to use butter as a form of GPS. Until the butter used to melt, they traveled south and then turned right when it melted.
One can enter the EU without crossing the Atlantic Ocean. It is possible because three of the islands of the Caribbean named Guadeloupe, Martinique, and Saint Martin are overseas nations of France. They use the Euro as their currency (although on the southern Dutch side of Saint Martin they use Florin) and all are represented in the European Union.
Sir Richard Branson of the Virgin Group owns an entire island in the Caribbean Sea, the Necker Island.
The world’s shortest runway is on the Caribbean island Saba. The landing strip is said to be just 1,312.3 ft (400 m) and is surrounded by water.
Jamaica, one of the islands in the Caribbean, has more churches per square mile than in any other country in the world and is recorded in the Guinness Book of Records.
In most Caribbean islands, official languages are English, French or Spanish. However, most locals speak Creole that is their native language derived by blending multiple languages.
The captivating and mysterious land formation and beauty of the Caribbean islands attract people from all over the world. The largest group of islands in the Caribbean was formed by volcanic eruptions, some islands broke out from North America, and smaller islands are the result of coral buildup.
The Caribbean got its name as West Indies because of Christopher Columbus who first arrived there in 1492 when he mistakenly reached the Caribbean instead of the Indies (Asia). On account of this, people who lived there were called Indians before Europeans arrived.
In the 15th century, Spain was the first European country to colonize the Caribbean, and then a system of sugar planting and enslavement followed. The other European countries including France and England started to settle in this region in the early 17th century. Many European countries gradually came and had their colonies established till the 19th century.
There was a significant colonial influence on the Caribbean. Landscape exploitation started with the colonization of Spain in the 1490s, which forcibly held the people to mine for gold. Later, when it was discovered that the island is made for sugar, sugar plantations started which resulted in rising in slavery as there was a need for workers with the spread of plantation.
There was economic exploitation by colonizers, wars that affected the island groups, and slave rebellions. The islands started gaining independence in the 19th century with Haiti being the first to gain independence which followed others.
There are 1073 United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural organization world heritage sites all around the world and 23 of them are from the Caribbean spread across 14 islands. Among all, Cuba alone has nine out of 23 heritage sites. Some of them are Alejandro de Humboldt National Park in Holguin and Guantanamo, Cuba; Blue and the John Crow Mountains in Jamaica, and Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison in Bridgetown, Barbados.
Caribbean culture is influenced by European colonizers, the immigrant population, and the native community that lived before colonization which resulted in its melting pot of culture. Read on for some interesting cultural facts about the Caribbean Islands.
Diverse languages and dialects are spoken by people which reflects the diversity in the island. Various pop music has spread all around the world from the Caribbean, and many genres of music have originated in the region.
During the 17th and 18th century many Africans were brought here as slaves to work in sugar plantations. This resulted in the spreading of the African culture in the Caribbean such as their dance, rituals, cuisines, and music which blended with the islands’ culture.
There is diversity in spirituality, the region colonized by Spain remained Catholic while others practice different religions. Indian immigrants in Trinidad and Tobago follow Hinduism, while in the British islands, most people practice Protestantism.
One of the world’s recognized parades is Caribbean parades that are known for their loud music, energizing dance moves, and outstanding costumes. They display their rich and lively Caribbean culture through their various festivals and carnivals hosted by different Caribbean countries every year. There is a diverse ethnicity in the population and every group of people celebrates their festival and culture in their way which adds to the vibrant environment of the island.
The fascinating history of the Caribbean, which dates back to the 1490s with its discovery by Christopher Columbus resulted in the melting pot of culture of today’s Caribbean islands which is recognized by the whole world.
From the above-mentioned facts about the Caribbean, it is evident that people across the world would be bewitched by it and would love to visit. The islands have been a major attraction for many tourists around the world.
The most visited island in the Caribbean is the Dominican Republic which is mostly known for its white sandy and sunny beaches and turquoise water. It has a rich Spanish culture and Santa Domingo and its colonial architecture which is a crucial tourist attraction was declared a world heritage site in 1990 by UNESCO. Cuba is the largest nation in the Caribbean and also one of the most visited destinations. It has a perfect blend of its culture, nature, tradition, and history which makes it a vibrant place. Maria La Gorda, Cayo Largo Del Sur, Santiago De Cuba, Vinales, and Havana are some of the tourist spots.
Jamaica, known as the playground of the Caribbean is famous for its Negril’s Seven Mile Beaches in the west to breath-taking waterfalls in the east. It is also famous for its churches per square mile, making it the only place in the world to have these many churches.
The beautiful island chain of more than 700 islands in the Atlantic Ocean, the Bahamas is among the world’s best places for relaxation and sunny beaches. Its serenity, calm atmosphere, and vibrant culture make it the perfect getaway for vacation.
Other major tourist spots in the Caribbean include Puerto Rica, Aruba, Guadeloupe, Barbados, US Virgin Islands, and Martinique. Apart from its beautiful nature, beaches, sun, sand, seas, tropical forests, and coral reefs, there are many other captivating and intriguing things on Caribbean islands which are yet to be explored and which keep the island at the center of attraction.
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 125 facts about the Caribbean Islands that you will love then why not take a look at Snake Island Brazil facts, or Jeju Island South Korea?
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