When you look at a map, the Caribbean

doesn't look all that impressive. You see a bunch of little specks of

land surrounded by large swaths of water. Those little pieces of land

include places that aren't always household names like Montserrat,

Anguilla, and Saint Kitts and Nevis. Lest we forget Turks and Caicos


While some of the names may not be familiar, the fact is that the

Caribbean is a popular vacation region. Those little dots on the map

often turn out to be island paradises. There are more than 7,000

islands, islets, reefs, and cayes in the Caribbean, after all, and many

of them are sparsely populated and stunningly beautiful.


Aruba,Travelling Pooh,flickr

Capital: Oranjestad

Population: 105,000

Official Language: Dutch

Currency: Aruban Florin

Location: 20 Miles north of Venezuela and west of Bonaire and Curacao

Amerigo Vespucci first came across Aruba in 1499 and the island was colonized

by Spain for over a century. Since 1647 Aruba has been under Dutch

administration other than a brief occupation by Britain from 1799-1802 and

1805-1816. In 1986 the island gained independence from the Netherlands


Aruba enjoys one of the highest standards of living in the Caribbean and the

lowest crime rate.  It's economy flourishes on Tourism, Oil Processing,

Agriculture and Manufacturing

Barbados,Land of the Lost,flickr


Population: 279,000 (90 % of African descent)

Capital City: Bridgetown

Currency: Barbadian Dollar

Official Language: English

Location: Barbados is the furthest southeast of any of the islands in

the Caribbean


is an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations and has been since

1966. Once a major stopping off point in the African slave trade in the 17th

and 18th centuries, it is now influenced by a very heavy English

influence and it is nicknamed “Little England.” The main driving forces for the

economy are sugarcane, manufacturing, offshore banking and tourism.

Barbados is also ranked 23rd in the world for literacy rate and

ranked 31st out of 177 nations according to the UN Human Development


Cayman Islands

Fevi in Cayman,flickr



City: Georgetown


Cayman Dollar


Language: English


The Cayman Islands are due south of Cuba and about 150 miles from the most

southern part of Florida.
First discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1503, the Cayman Islands along with Jamaica were ceded to England in 1670. The islands became a separate British Overseas Territory in 1962 .The majority of the Islands' economic activity revolves around tourism and offshore banking.
The Cayman Islands enjoy the highest standards of living in the Caribbean but have been affected by hurricanes more than any other region.





Capital City: St. George’s

Currency: East Caribbean


Official Language: English

Christopher Columbus first saw the island in 1498. In 1650 the French took control and eventually ceded it to the United Kingdom in 1762. Grenada gained independence from the U.K. in 1974.
Tourism and spices are the leading source of economic income, so much so that Grenada is known as the “Isle of Spice”.

St. Kitts

St. Kitts,slack12,flickr

Population: 43,000

Capital City: Basseterre

Currency: East Caribbean Dollar

Official Language: English

Location: Geographically St. Kitts and Nevis is part of the Leeward Islands. To the

north-northwest are the islands of St. Eustatius, Saba, Saint Barthelemy and

St. Martin. Northeast of St. Kitts is Antigua and Barbuda.

St. Kitts was the first British Colony in the West

Indies in 1624. In 1983 St. Kitts and Nevis achieved independence and is the

newest sovereign nation in the Americas. It is also the smallest in terms of

population and land area.

Literacy Rate is above 98% and unemployment is among

the lowest in the Caribbean at 4.3%.

St. Lucia


Population: 161,000
Capital City:
East Caribbean Dollar
Official Language:
English, French Creole, Spanish
The island of St. Lucia is located 21 miles north of St. Vincent and the

Grenadines, lies northwest of Barbados and south of Martinique

St. Lucia, named for St. Lucy of Syracuse, was first

discovered by Europeans around 1500. After going to war with France 14

different times over the 17th and 18th century over the island, Great Britain

took complete control in 1814. Finally, on February 22, 1979 St. Lucia became

an independent state of the Commonwealth of Nations.

 The economy of St. Lucia revolves largely around their

tourism services and local agriculture.

St. Maarten


Population: 85,000

Capital City: Phillipsburg/Marigot

Currency: Netherlands Antillean Gulden

Official Language: Dutch, French, English

Location: 180 Miles east of Puerto Rico

St. Maarten/St. Martin has a very interesting history.

It is the smallest inhabited sea island that is divided between two nations.

The two sides were first divided into Dutch and French sides in 1648. For most

of the 18th century it was handed off between the Dutch, French and English as

were many of the Caribbean islands. In 1816 the French and Dutch zones resumed

as they are today.

The local economy is predominantly based on tourism

and retail shopping.

Turks & Caicos



Cockburn Town



Official Language:


Currency: US



Consists of 2 groups of islands south of Bahamas, the Turks and the Caicos

The Turks

and Caicos islands were passed back and forth between Bermuda and the Bahamas

in the 18th and 19th century because of the tremendous salt trade. The British

government eventually assigned control to the Bahamas until the mid 1840’s.

Since that point, it has largely been under British control, but Canada has at

times shown interest in annexing the islands.


majority of the industry, tourism, and economy in the chain of islands takes

place on Providenciales. The government seat is in Grand Turk, but

Providenciales is where everything truly takes place.


islands have economies that largely revolve around Tourism, Fishing, and

Offshore Banking.