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Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

The Grenadines are equally lush. Secluded coves, spectacular coral reefs, rainforest hiking and superb sailing conditions are among the main tourist attractions. By the time St Vincent was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1498, the island had been occupied for nearly 200 years by Carib Indians from South America, who had subjugated the original Arawak Indian inhabitants. The island remained a Spanish possession until 1627, when it was granted to the British Lord Carlisle. However, the Caribs fought furiously to keep possession of it. In 1783, the Treaty of Versailles restored St Vincent to Britain, after the French had temporarily taken it.

Practical Information

Area: St Vincent: 344 km² (133 miles²), Grenadines: 45.3 km² (17.3 miles²)

Capital: Kingstown. Population: 29 000

Population: 118,149

Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar (XCD symbol EC$) = 100 cents

Government: Constitutional monarachy. Gained independence from the UK in 1979.

Tipping: 10 to 15% service added to the bill.

Time zone: GMT - 4

Languages: English

Additional descriptions

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Social customs

The Vincentians are fun-loving and easy-going people, and the informal and relaxed lifestyle combines many English influences with West Indian. All visitors are made welcome and casual wear is widely acceptable.Read more Refrain, however, from wearing beachwear or mini shorts on the streets or while shopping.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Food and local specialties

St Vincent is one of the few islands where good West Indian cuisine can almost always be enjoyed in hotels. There is plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and other seafood on offer. Lobster is available inRead more season. The national specialties are: Red snapper. Kingfish. Lambi (conch). Callalou soup. Souse (pickled meat or seafood). Sea-moss drink. Vincentian beer and rum, a major ingredient in punch and cocktails. A wide variety of local exotic fruit juices.

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