Know About Jamaica

Some Facts About Jamaica

 Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. 

It is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the Caribbean.

Area:- 10,990 square kilometres (4,240 sq mi)

Location:- Latitudes 17° and 19°N, and longitudes 76° and 79°W. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres (90 mi) south of Cuba, and 191 kilometres (119 mi) west of Hispaniola (the island containing the countries of Haiti and the Dominican Republic); the British Overseas Territory of the Cayman Islands lies some 215 kilometres (134 mi) to the north-west.

Time Zone:- EST – Eastern Standard Time all year. There are no Daylight Saving Time clock changes.

Language:- The official language is English but a local dialect “patio” is also spoken.

Climate:- The climate in Jamaica is tropical, with hot and humid weather, although higher inland regions are more temperate. Some regions on the south coast, such as the Liguanea Plain and the Pedro Plains, are relatively dry rain-shadow areas.

Flora and Fauna:- About 3,000 species of native flowering plants, thousands of species of non-flowering flora. Some of the botanical gardens here are several hundred years old. Jamaica is home to about 289 species of birds of which 27 are endemic including the endangered black-Billed parrots and the Jamaican blackbird. It is also the home to four species of hummingbirds, three of which are found nowhere else in the world.

Tourist Attractions:- Mountains dominate the interior: the Don Figuerero, Santa Cruz, and May Day mountains in the west, the Dry Harbour Mountains in the centre, and the John Crow Mountains and the Blue Mountains in the east, the latter containing Blue Mountain Peak, Jamaica’s tallest mountain at 2,256 m. They are surrounded by a narrow coastal plain. Jamaica only has two cities, the first being Kingston, the capital city and centre of business, located on the south coast and the second being Montego Bay, one of the best-known cities in the Caribbean for tourism, located on the north coast. Kingston Harbour is the seventh-largest natural harbour in the world, which contributed to the city being designated as the capital in 1872. Other towns of note include Portmore, Spanish Town, Savanna la Mar, Mandeville and the resort towns of Ocho Ríos, Port Antonio and Negril.

Other tourist attractions include Dunn’s River Falls in St. Ann, YS Falls in St. Elizabeth, the Blue Lagoon in Portland, believed to be the crater of an extinct volcano, and Port Royal, site of a major earthquake in 1692 that helped form the island’s Palisadoes tombolo.

History:- Jamaica was inhabited by the Arawak tribes prior to the arrival of Columbus in 1494. Early inhabitants of Jamaica named the land “Xaymaca”, meaning “Land of wood and water”. The Spanish enslaved the Arawaks, who were so ravaged by their conflict with the Europeans and by foreign diseases that nearly the entire native population was extinct by 1600. The Spanish also transported hundreds of West African slaves to the island.

In the year 1655, the English invaded Jamaica, defeating the Spanish colonists. African slaves took advantage of the political turmoil and escaped to the island’s interior, forming independent communities (known as the Maroons). Meanwhile, on the coast, the English built the settlement of Port Royal, which became a base of operations for pirates and privateers.

In the 18th century, sugar cane replaced piracy as British Jamaica’s main source of income. The sugar industry was labour-intensive and the British brought hundreds of thousands of enslaved Africans to Jamaica. Enslaved Jamaicans mounted over a dozen major uprisings during the 18th century, including Tacky’s revolt in 1760. There were also periodic skirmishes between the British and the mountain communities, culminating in the First Maroon War of the 1730s and the Second Maroon War of the 1790s.

Jamaica was granted independence in 1962. We are no longer a British Colony but remain a member of the British Commonwealth nations, maintain a British Democratic parliamentary system, with the Queen of England as a head of state. She is represented locally by the ‘Governor-General’. There is a well-established democratic system which holds elections every five years.

Famous People:-

Bob Marley – Robert Nesta “Bob” Marley, OM was a Jamaican reggae singer, songwriter, musician, and guitarist who achieved international fame and acclaim. Bob Marley is a major influence in Reggae music. He died at the young age of 36 from cancer.

Errol Flynn – Bought a large estate and Hotel in Jamaica and lived there for a number of years.

Ian Fleming – Built his home “GoldenEye” in Oracabessa Jamaica and wrote ten of his James bond novels there. Ian Flemming borrowed the name of his famous fictional spy “James bond” from “James Bond” who was the author of a guide to the birds of the west indies.

Rolling Stones – Mick Jager of the rolling stones owns a home on the shaw Park ridge in Ocho Rios Jamaica.

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