30 interesting facts about Kiribati - the slowly vanishing islands
Kiribati is an island country in the Pacific Ocean. It is the largest state in Oceania in terms of extent, with an area of about 5,000,000 km² covered by the ocean, but the land area is only a small fragment of it, only 811 km², in the form of 32 small islets . The country has about 100,000 inhabitants who can be proud of the official title of "land of the rising sun". taking into account the conventions that set the time zone across the planet. The Republic of Kiribati is one of the first places on Earth traversed by the first rays of the Sun every morning. The time zone is 14 hours ahead of UTC - the farthest time zone in the world.
The state comprises three groups of islands - the Gilbert Islands, the Phoenix Islands and the Line Islands. The capital of the Republic of Kiribati is South Tarawa, and the island relief is of coral and volcanic origin, the maximum altitude in the area being only 80 meters. The climate is equatorial, and vegetation is represented by tropical trees and grassy plants. Coconut and pandanus forests occupy 50% of the territory.
The island state of Kiribati is located immediately in Polynesia and Micronesia. Currently, the small country is successfully developing, despite scarce natural resources. Bemorepanda collected some interesting facts:
1. The name of the island state of Kiribati comes from the distorted English "Gilbert Islands".
2. All the islands on which Kiribati is located are atolls.
3. Kiribati covers an area of 33 atolls.
4. The highest point in Kiribati is 81 meters above sea level. It is located on Banaba Atoll.
5. On the territory of Kiribati there are two freshwater lakes and about a hundred salt ones.
6. Kiribati is a member of the United Nations.
7. Two of the atolls of Kiribati were once used for testing atomic weapons.
8. The main problems in Kiribati are overpopulation, lack of fresh water and soil erosion.
9. The total population of Kiribati is just over one hundred thousand people.
10. About 90% of the population of Kiribati are representatives of the people of the same name. Its other name is tungaru.
11. The official language of the country is English, but very few people speak it. The majority of the population speaks the Kiribati language.
12. The writing system of Kiribati is based on the English alphabet.
13. Kiribati does not have its own army.
14. There are two official currencies in the country - the Australian dollar and the equivalent Kiribatian dollar.
15. The Kiribati one dollar coin has a dodecagonal shape.
16. Stamps issued by the country are popular with philatelists around the world and are a significant source of replenishment of the state treasury.
17. Kiribati has the second largest exclusive economic zone in the Pacific Ocean - more than three and a half million square kilometers of water space.
18. Kiribati has two radio stations - a government and a private one.
19. Kiribati is the least visited country on the planet by tourists.
20. Athletes from Kiribati take part in the Olympic Games.
21. Also, the Republic of Kiribati is unique in that it is located in all hemispheres of the Earth at once. Part of Kiribati, islands
22. Phoenix is the world's largest marine reserve.
23. On one of the atolls of Kiribati there is a city called London.
24. Christmas Island, one of the Kiribati atolls, is the largest atoll in the world. He alone occupies 48 percent of the country's total land mass..
25. The Republic of Kiribati as a state appeared in 1979, having gained independence from Great Britain.
26. There is not a single river in Kiribati.
27. The only diplomatic mission in the world of the Republic of Kiribati is located on the Fiji Islands. In Russia, for example, the British consulate is in charge of Kiribati's diplomatic affairs.
28. Tarawa and others of the Gilbert group were occupied by Japan during World War II.
29. The island is slowly disappearing.
30. Most of the islands of Kiribati are low-lying coral atolls built on a submerged volcanic chain and encircled by reefs.
The Marshall Islands is a small state lost in the endless ocean. Few people in our country were closely interested in him, and it was completely in vain - this is the land of insane beauty.
The islands were discovered by the Spanish in the first half of the 16th century and were explored by British Captain John Marshall (1788), from whom they received their name. Between 1885 and 1914 they were under German protectorate, and during World War II the area was part of the Japanese first line of defense. In 1944 the islands were conquered by the Americans, who administered them until 1990, when the country gained its independence. On Bikini and Enewetak Islands, the U.S.A. they conducted nuclear experiments.
The Republic of the Marshall Islands is an island state in the Pacific Ocean, north of the Equator, between the Caroline and Hawaii archipelagos, with an area of 181 km.
The territory of the country occupies several hundred islands (32 atolls, 867 reefs), arranged in two rows: Ralik in the west and Ratak in the east.
The climate is equatorial, determining a tropical (tree) vegetation, dominated by banana and palm trees, but also a fauna rich in birds, fish.
Bemorepanda collected some more interesting facts:
1. The Republic of the Marshall Islands is actually under the control and jurisdiction of the United States.
2. The archipelago, on which the republic is spread, includes 5 islands and 29 atolls.
3. The Marshall Islands were discovered in 1526.
4. The land area of this state is about 181 square kilometers.
5. Nuclear weapons were tested on two atolls.
6. There are no nature reserves in the Marshall Islands.
7. There are paved roads only on the two largest atolls of the archipelago.
8. The maximum height of the Marshall Islands above sea level is ten meters.
9. The country gained independence only in 1983.
10. It is here, on the Kwajalein Atoll, that the world's largest lagoon is located.
11. In the northern part of the archipelago, the climate is so arid that it receives about the same amount of precipitation as in the American deserts.
12. The Marshall Islands have two official languages - Marshall and English.
13. The currency of the Republic is the US dollar.
14. 98% of the population of the islands are Marshalls.
15. The Marshall Islands maintains diplomatic relations with many countries. With Russia too.
16. Also the Marshall Islands is a member of the United Nations.
17. Subsidies from the United States and other countries account for a large share of the state
18. On the territory of the Marshall Islands there are more than two thousand kilometers of highways.
19. Internet and mobile phones are available in the two largest atolls, but they are very poorly distributed.
20. The Marshall Islands publishes two newspapers, one private and one public.
21. The country's islands are significantly distant from each other.
22. In total, the Marshall Islands is home to just over fifty thousand people.
23. The most popular sport in the country is basketball.
24. In 2008, athletes from the Marshall Islands took part in the Olympic Games for the first time, but did not take prizes.
25. There are only two hospitals in the country.
The Republic of Palau is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. At least, this is how those who visit this island nation usually speak of it, admire the green islands growing from the sea surface and dive underwater, seeing with their own eyes the fantastic underwater world of Palau. It is as beautiful as the travel brochures promise.
Amazing facts about Palau
The country of Palau is, as it were, an independent state, but at the same time, as it were, not. It is associated with the United States; that is, it partially controls and undertakes, if necessary, to provide Palau with protection and patronage.
1. The Republic of Palau is one of the most beautiful countries in the world.
2. This is how those who visit this island nation usually speak of it, admire the green islands growing from the sea surface, and dive under the water, seeing with their eyes the fantastic underwater world of Palau.
3. Palau is an island state in the northwest of Oceania. It occupies the extreme western part of the arc of the Caroline Islands.
4. In the west and north, the country is washed by the waters of the Philippine Sea. The country consists of 26 large and more than 300 small islands. Most of the islands are covered with evergreen tropical forests.
5. They are divided into two groups: southwestern (Tobi Islands, Sonsorol Islands, and others) and the Palau Islands proper. Most uninhabited of the 328 islands that make up the Republic of Palau.
6. In the past, the Palau Islands belonged to Spain, Germany, Japan, and the United States.
7. The Republic of Palau received independence from the USA only in 1994, which makes it one of the youngest states in the world.
8. The official currency of Palau is the US dollar.
WATERFALLS OF PALAU
9. About 21 thousand people live in the entire Republic of Palau. This is about 600 times less than in Moscow. And from year to year, it practically does not change.
10. English here has official status on a par with Palauan, but in practice, only about 15% of the population speaks it. Primarily those who work with tourists.
11. Almost all Palauans profess various denominations of Christianity, but about 9% adhere to the Modekngei religion, which is not found in other countries. It combines elements of Christianity and traditional local beliefs.
12. The Spanish navigators called these islands “Enchanted” because they could not reach them due to storms and strong headwinds, although they tried repeatedly.
13. The climate here is one of the best on the planet - all year round, the air temperature here is from 25 to 30 degrees, give or take.
14. Precipitation here is more than 3000 mm per year, and humidity averages about 80%. February and March are the driest months, while June to August is a period of prolonged tropical rains.
15. Typhoons are rare here, as Palau is outside the typhoon belt, but sometimes they still sweep over the islands (usually between June and December). The island's water temperature is about 20 ° C all year round.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF PALAU
16. An important attraction is the National Museum of Palau - a good enough place to understand the national culture and history.
17. Here, you can also find several interesting natural and ethnographic exhibits: the head of a 5-meter crocodile, the largest ever caught on the islands, beads, and money from shells, sea charts from cords and sticks, carvings and other items of local history and crafts, a beautiful traditional "bai" (joint meeting center) made of wood and straw, as well as a small collection of Japanese military equipment from World War II.
CULTURAL AND HISTORICAL MUSEUM
18. The Dolphin Center near the coast of Koror, the International Center for the Study of Coral Reefs with a beautiful aquarium, deserves attention here.
19. The best resort complex in the country is Palau Pacific Resort, with an extensive range of entertainment, a first-class dive center, and a secluded resort complex Carolines Resort.
20. Here is the famous Blue Corner dive site (closer to the Rock Islands), where you can expect to meet any sea creature - there is an incredible variety of fish and crustaceans, nurse sharks, barracudas soft and hard corals.
UNDERWATER WORLD IN THE WATER WASHING PALAU
21. About 130 sharks live in the waters washing the shores of Palau. And there are about 1500 species of other fish.
22. There is no army at all in this country.
23. There are no political parties here.
24. Here is one of the natural wonders of the world, Jellyfish Lake, which several million of them exist. They have bred so much due to the lack of natural enemies and therefore have lost the ability to sting.
25. the giant bivalve mollusks in the world live in the coastal waters of Palau - giant tridacna, up to 2 meters in diameter and weighing up to 220-250 kilograms.
26. Angaur Island, or Ngeur (only 8 square kilometers), is the southernmost in the Palau group of islands. This is a somewhat mysterious and calm place with only two villages and 188 inhabitants.
27. This island became famous for its phosphate mines, which the Germans began to develop in 1909. Now, on the site of mines and quarries, green ponds serve as the home of a small colony of crocodiles.
28. By the way, this is also the only place in the country where monkeys live - macaques that escaped from the cages of German miners at one time formed an utterly independent population and feel great among the green thickets of Angaur.
29. Another unique feature of the island is the dominance of the three official languages - English, Japanese, and Angaur (Western Austronesian group), as well as the country's first casino, opened by the national congress's decision in 2003.
30. There is virtually no crime in Palau.
CITY OF KOROR IN PALAU
31. Koror - the economic center and former capital of Palau - is located on the island of the same name. Now it is a much less vibrant city compared to the time when it was dominated by the Japanese, with a leisurely Micronesian pace of life, with a complete absence of crowds and bustle.
32. Here you can still find the remains of the traditional past, but at best this city is an excellent place to relax for a day or two, no more. But from here, starting a trip to Peleliu, Angaur, the Rock Islands, and many popular dive sites is very convenient.
33. The underwater world of Palau is vibrant. The vertical walls of the rocks, sheerly going into the abyss, are covered with a variety of bright corals - these are soft corals and fans of gorgonians and openwork colonies of macroporous corals. The total number of coral species in Palau reaches 700.
34. Various invertebrates live among the corals: starfish, Gorgon's Head brittle stars, crabs and shrimps, sea urchins, colorful nudibranchs, and huge pleurobranchia. At the bottom, huge tridacnas with bright mantles of different colors are visible: emerald green, blue, and purple.
35. Various tropical fish live near coral thickets, including giant Napoleon fish. In the water column near the steep outer walls of the reefs, pelagic fish are found in large numbers: tuna, marlin, mackerel, and barracuda.
36. In the Ulong Channel - a natural channel in the barrier reef - at a depth of 20 meters on a sandy plateau at the entrance to the track, whitetip and gray reef sharks constantly swim with cleaner fish. Diving with whitetip and gray reef sharks is unforgettable.
37. Saltwater crocodiles are found in Palau, and dives with crocodiles are organized for lovers of the exotic.
38. In addition to diving in the sea, dives are organized in Lake Medusa. The jellyfish here are similar to the Black Sea corners but differ in their orange color and the fact that they have lost their stinging cells during evolution. Dives are carried out in the first set; below 10 meters, the water is toxic.
39. Just 35 kilometers south of Koror are the famous Rock Islands - one of the best places for outdoor activities in the Pacific Ocean. The mushroom-shaped limestone rocks of this island group (about 200 islets and reefs in total) are covered with a robust vegetation cap, and the waters around are considered one of the most abundant places on Earth. Therefore they serve as a recognized Mecca for divers.
40. The main points of attraction here are the famous Ngemelis coral wall, which begins at the surface of the water and goes to a depth of 300 meters with a continuous cover of sponges, soft corals, gorgonians, and giant black coral “trees.”
BEACHES ON THE ROCK ISLANDS
41. Also, on the Rock Islands, there are many snow-white shores of coral sand, caves with stalactites and underground channels, ancient petroglyphs (especially on the island of Oolong), and other traces of ancient peoples (fascinating is the quarry where stone money of the Yapese culture was made, located in a cave near Airer-Channel).
42. There is no public transport in Palau at all. All residents use their vehicles.
43. And the guests of this state have only two options - to rent a car or a motorcycle or to use a costly taxi.
44. Due to the particular historical conditions of the country, it is impossible to single out any specific local cuisine here. Most traditional island dishes are variations on recipes from Polynesian and Melanesian peoples, with a substantial admixture of Japanese, Filipino and American cuisine.
45. The main elements of the traditional cuisine of Palau are coconut milk and copra, cassava (tapioca), sweet potatoes, and all kinds of fish and seafood.
46. Diplomatic relations between Palau and Russia were established only in 2006.
47. The only products exported here are coconut meat (copra) and some seafood.
48. Theft is not universal in Palau.
49. Slightly less than 10% of residents are not literate.
50. Locals are eager to help tourists determine the best fishing spots, so marlin, sailfish, tuna, mahi-mahi, and wahoo in a center and a half are not rare guests in the catches of sport fishing enthusiasts.
The island state of Kiribati is located immediately in Polynesia and Micronesia. At present, the small country is successfully developing despite scarce natural resources.
Amazing facts about Kiribati
Of all the countries in the world, only Kiribati is located in all hemispheres of the planet at once - Northern, Southern, Western, and Eastern. All 33 atolls belonging to the republic are scattered at a considerable distance from each other, while only 13 of them are permanently inhabited. At the same time, Christmas Island, the largest atoll in the world, accounts for about 48% of the state's total land mass.
1. Kiribati is a tiny island country located in the Western Pacific Ocean.
The name of the island nation of Kiribati comes from the distorted English "Gilbert Islands".
2. Kiribati is the only country on Earth located in all hemispheres at once - Northern and Southern, Western and Eastern.
3. The Republic of Kiribati in the northwest borders on the territorial waters of two states, namely the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands. In the southwest and west, Kiribati has maritime boundaries with Tuvalu, the Solomon Islands and Nauru.
4. In the southeast and south - with the waters belonging to Tokelau, the Cook Islands, as well as French Polynesia. In the northeast and north, the republic borders on the Outer Small Islands, which are part of the United States, as well as on Pacific neutral waters.
5. The coastal strip of Kiribati has a length of 1143 kilometers.
6. Little is known about how the islands of Kiribati were settled. There is an assumption that the ancestors of modern local residents moved to the Gilbert atolls in the 1st millennium AD. from eastern Melanesia. But the Phoenix and Line archipelagos remained uninhabited by the time they were discovered by the Americans and Europeans.
7. Nevertheless, on these atolls one can find traces of the presence of a person who lived here in the distant past. A similar fact allowed scientists to assume that the local population for some reason left these archipelagos. One of the most popular versions explains this by small land areas, remoteness from other islands, an arid climate and a constant shortage of fresh water. Due to all these factors, it was difficult to live on these atolls. Most likely, the people who settled the islands soon left them.
8. The discoverers of the archipelagos located in the western part of the Pacific Ocean are American and British expeditions. Their ships visited these places in the period from the end of the 17th century to the beginning of the 19th century.
9. Initially, the atolls were called the Gilbert Islands. It happened in 1820. The name of the islands was given by the Russian traveler and Admiral Krusenstern in honor of the British captain T. Gilberg, who discovered these lands in 1788.
10. The first settlers from Britain arrived on the islands in 1837. In 1892, these territories became a protectorate of England. Christmas Island joined the colony in 1919 and Phoenix became part of it in 1937.
11. The land area of the Republic of Kiribati consists of 33 atolls. This is the name of the coral islands, which have a ring-shaped shape. This state also includes small coral islands.
12. The country of Kiribati is located on atolls, one of which, Banaba, is raised. According to the theory put forward by Charles Darwin, the formation of such formations was facilitated by the subsidence of volcanic islands and the gradual fouling of their surface with corals. This process led to the emergence of fringing reefs, and then barrier reefs. Thus, land appeared in this part of the Pacific Ocean.
13. The distance from the easternmost to the westernmost island of the state is 4 thousand kilometers.
14. In the waters of the Pacific Ocean, all these small areas of land are spread over an area exceeding 3.5 million square kilometers. According to this indicator, the country of Kiribati has the second largest exclusive economic zone in the Pacific Ocean. But the entire land area of the country does not exceed 811 square kilometers.
15. Although this Pacific nation has 33 atolls, only 13 of them have permanent population.
16. The island state of Kiribati is located immediately in Polynesia and Micronesia.
17. The country consists of island groups. These are the Gilbert, Phoenix, and Line Islands. The last of them, by their location, belong to the southern part of the Hawaiian Islands.
18. The Republic of Kiribati as a state appeared in 1979, having gained independence from Great Britain.
19. The total population of Kiribati is a little over 115 thousand people.
20. About 90% of the population of Kiribati are representatives of the people of the same name. Its other name is tungar.
21. The official language of the country is English, but few people speak it. The majority of the population speaks Kiribati.
22. Modern writing in Kiribati uses the letters of the Latin alphabet.
23. In 1983, a friendship agreement was signed between the United States and Kiribati, according to which the United States renounced claims to 14 islands, recognizing them as part of Kiribati.
24. Kiribati does not have its own army. The defense of the state is carried out by the armed forces of Australia and New Zealand.
25. The United States in the 20th century tested atomic bombs on two atolls belonging to Kiribati.
26. This island nation has a weak economy, because it is far from world markets for its products.
27. Agriculture dominates the country, which negatively affects the vegetation cover of the islands, which are gradually being deforested.
28.Overpopulation, soil erosion and lack of fresh water are considered to be the main problems of Kiribati.
29. The United Kingdom periodically allocates funds to the development of the education system in Kiribati, and France to the health sector.
30. In Kiribati there are only 2 fresh, but about 100 small salt lakes. Some of them reach a diameter of several kilometers.
31. Freshwater lakes can be found only on two islands of the state. This is the atoll of Christmas and Teraina (Washington).
32. There is not a single river in Kiribati either.
33. The highest point of Kiribati is 81 meters above sea level. It is located on the Banaba Atoll. This is quite a lot, especially when compared with the Maldives, also located on the atolls, where the highest point is at a height of less than 5 meters.
34. The soils on the islands of Kiribati, due to their coral origin, are very poor and highly alkaline. Most of them are porous and do not retain moisture well.
35. The soils of Kiribati are very low in mineral and organic matter. The only exceptions are magnesium, sodium and calcium. Phosphate soils are widespread throughout the republic.
36. There are also brown-red soils on the islands, formed from guano, which is the decomposed droppings of sea birds, as well as bats.
37. The lack of water bodies on the islands is due to their small area, low altitude, and also the porosity of the soil.
38. The only source of fresh water on the atolls are the so-called lenses, formed by rainwater that seeps through the soil. You can get to the moisture by digging a well.
39. Such lenses are the only source of fresh water in most of the atolls of Kiribati. After the rains, local residents extract moisture for themselves from the leaves of coconut palms.
40.Since 28 January 2008, the Phoenix Island Group has been the world's largest marine reserve. Its area is 410.5 thousand square kilometers.
41. The Kiritimati Atoll, which is part of this country, is the largest coral atoll on Earth. It accounts for about 80% of the entire landmass of this country.
42. Christmas Island, one of the atolls that make up Kiribati, is the largest atoll in the world. Christmas Island is home to more bird species than any other island in the world.
43. The relatively young geological age of the atolls, their remoteness from the continent, as well as unfavorable weather conditions, have contributed to the fact that only 83 species of native plants in Kiribati exist. And none of them is endemic.
44. In addition, it is believed that several species of plants were introduced to these areas by Aboriginal people. Among them are: taka pinnatifid; breadfruit of two kinds; yam; giant taro; tarot; swamp giant taro.
45. Plants such as the coconut palm and the roofing pandanus most likely have a dual origin. On some atolls, they were brought by man, while on others they are indigenous representatives of the flora.
46.Four plant species, namely pandanus, breadfruit, coconut and taro, played in the past and continue to play today a leading role in the nutrition of the inhabitants of this island country.
47. The main representatives of the marine fauna are pearl mussels, holothurians (sea cucumbers), cones, tridacna, palm thieves and lobsters. There are a lot of fish in the ocean near the islands, of which there are from 600 to 800 species.
48. As for fish, it has always been the main food for local residents. In coastal waters, reef perches, albuls, hanos, large-headed mullets, sultans and horse mackerels are caught. There are several varieties of sea turtles near the islands.
49. Rich coastal waters of Kiribati and corals.
50. The animal world of the atolls is rather poor. During an American scientific expedition at the beginning of the 19th century, researchers discovered here only the only representative of land mammals - the Polynesian rat. Today, the inhabitants of the islands breed pigs and poultry.
51. But the world of avifauna in Kiribati is very diverse. There are 75 species of birds in the country, one of which is endemic. This is a warbler bird. She lives on Christmas Island.
52. Most of the landmasses of the Phoenix and Line archipelagos host large-scale bird colonies. That is why the islands of Starbuck and Malden, as well as part of the Christmas Atoll, have been declared a zone of marine reserves.
53. An additional source of income for Kiribati in recent years has been the issuance of licenses to fish in the Special Economic Zone.
54. The bulk of the republic's population lives on the Gilbert Islands. And most of them are located on Tarawa Atoll. Here is the capital of Kiribati - the city of South Tarawa. About 50 thousand inhabitants are registered here.
55. In addition to the capital, the city of Kiribati, there are 9 more settlements, the number of which exceeds 1.5 thousand people. The residential areas of the capital of Kiribati are located on several small islands, interconnected by bridges and dams.
56. South Tarawa comprises four municipalities. Their names are Betio and Bairiki, Bikinibeu and Bonriki. All these municipalities are located on the islands of the same name, being part of the capital of the state of Kiribati. It is on their territories that all the main commercial, government and educational institutions of the country are located.
57. So, in Betio there is a power plant operating for the entire atoll, a Maritime Institute and a port. Interestingly, this island is almost flat and devoid of vegetation. Its entire central part is occupied by a wide strip of the Hawkins airfield. It is in this place that the sights of Kiribati are located, which are military relics of the period when the famous battle for Tarawa took place.
58. Among the monuments reminiscent of the fierce battle on Tarawa are the Memorial Chapel built in the village of Abaroko.
59. And also the Memorial to the Heroes of the Outpost, which commemorates the memory of 22 British servicemen killed by the Japanese in October 1942.
60.The most important feature of Betio are military cemeteries, which can impress anyone with their numerous rows of wooden tombstones, because on the island, which is only 3 kilometers long, more than 5.5 thousand war victims are buried.
61. Kiribati has two radio stations of its own, government and private.
62. Road signs here are often drawn by hand on suitable surfaces.
63. Athletes from Kiribati take part in the Olympic Games.
64. The average annual temperature in Kiribati ranges from +26, +32 ⁰C.
65. On the Caroline Atoll, located in the Line Archipelago, people are the first to celebrate the New Year (outside of Eurasia and Antarctica). This happens due to the fact that this island is the easternmost piece of land located in the 12th time zone.
66. Among the local villages there are London, Paris and others. Locals like to call their villages after European capitals.
67.The production of postage stamps generates significant revenue for the public treasury. Stamps are very popular among philatelists from various countries.
68.There are two official currencies in circulation in the country - the Australian dollar and the equivalent Kiribati dollar.
69. The Kiribati one dollar coin has a dodecagonal shape.
70.At present, the small country is developing successfully despite scarce natural resources.
71.Kiribati is a member of the UN.
72.The world's only diplomatic mission of the Republic of Kiribati is located in the Fiji Islands.
73. The British Consulate is usually in charge of the diplomatic affairs of Kiribati.
74. Kiribati is an amazing country. In addition to the natural beauty, it is also notable for the fact that 99.99% of the world's population has no idea about its existence.
75. Kiribati is the least visited country on the planet by tourists. Only the most desperate tourists reach the remote islands of the country of Kiribati.
Mexico is a country famous for its fantastic beaches and Mayan and Aztec ruins and pyramids. But this country full of history has much more to offer and this is the reason why it is tenth in the list of preferences of tourists around the world, when it comes to spending the holidays. Here are seven of the most beautiful and popular things about Mexico.
Mexicans represent a combination of over 50 different indigenous groups. This means that almost all Mexican citizens have indigenous blood flowing through their veins. The inhabitants of this country are very friendly and proud of the culture and heritage of their country.
Mexican food is famous all over the world, but the offers are much more varied than decattacos, fajitas, burritos, hot peppers, beans and tomatoes. In fact, the basis of most Spanish dishes is corn. The people here have been making corn tortillas for centuries, for which they have used varieties grown in the country. But you will also find other excellent dishes with vegetables, seafood and meat.
1. Burritos and tacos are national and very popular food here, based on tortillas made from corn, wheat and even cactus flour. The second component is meat, chicken or vegetables and necessarily beans, all seasoned with a hot chili sauce.
2. Freshly squeezed juices, as well as various soft drinks sold on every corner, are very cheap, but be careful - ice is generously put there or diluted with water of unknown origin.
3. Fruits on the streets are sold peeled and cut, in plastic bags. Before selling them, they are offered to be sprinkled with chili powder with sugar on top - for hot lovers.
4. Homemade ice cream, which can be found on sale, is sold without packaging, and what looks like chocolate chips may turn out to be chili peppers. Even when buying ice cream you need to clarify - "no spicy pliz" =).
5. Tequila (full name of Santiago de Tequila) is the name of the Mexican city in which the main production of the drink of the same name is located.
6. Blue agave is the plant from which Tequila is made, contrary to popular belief that it is made from cacti. Blue agave belongs to the asparagus family and looks like a small bush with thorns, which is probably why the stereotype about cacti appeared.
7. Tequilero - this is the name of a tequila specialist.
8. Popular local sweets: apple and other fruit candy - in the form of toffee and in the form of cubes; candied coconut in lime; Juchela-shaped sweet beans with chili.
9. Boiled corn is also a popular delicacy here - you can buy the whole cob or already peeled in a glass. The seller, in addition to corn, adds salt, mayonnaise to the glass, sprinkles with cheese and squeezes lime juice onto all this mash. And for the ear and for the glass the price is the same - a little more than a dollar.
10. Corn here is generally a universal product - it is eaten raw, boiled and grilled; it is used for making tortillas, stew, yogurt and even corn ice cream with pieces of corn.
11. Meat in villages is often sold without refrigerators - despite the heat, it simply hangs on a hook.
12. In large supermarkets, sellers work in gauze bandages.
13. Mexican Groupon is very developed in large cities - interesting offers are often found, promotions will appeal to discount fans. We bought coupons in a cafe more than once, booked a hotel room (3 nights for the price of two), paid for an "extreme tour" with a 75% discount, a visit to a crocodile farm for 50% and a segway tour for 30% of the tour cost.
14. The sand on the Caribbean coast of coral origin is very fine, white and hardly gets hot. In 40 degrees heat, you can walk barefoot on it.
15. The water in the Caribbean Sea is very warm, about 25-28 degrees all year round.
16. The underwater museum with four hundred sculptures located at a depth of about 2 to 10 meters is located near Cancun. Divers who are bored with tropical fish and coral reefs will surely like it.
17. The beaches of Cancun and Tulum are among the ten best beaches in the world according to TripAdvisor.
18. Cenotes are natural wells or small lakes that the Mayans used as sources of water and places for sacrifices, they will surely appeal to snorkelers. Most cenotes are located in caves with many bizarre stalactites and stalagmites. The water there is crystal clear and pleasantly cool, well suited for relaxing from the heat outside.
19. Iguanas of different colors and sizes are very common in villages and small towns in Mexico.
20. Official taxis in Mexico City have a state license with a photo of the driver on the glass. To avoid misunderstandings, it is recommended that you check the photo with the person driving.
21. Taxis in Mexico City differ in safety classes. The safer - the more expensive, but generally it is quite cheap. For 3 or 4 people, it is often more profitable to take a taxi than to travel by public transport.
22. The cost of local calls from a pay phone does not depend on the duration of the call. For example, an unlimited city call will cost 3 pesos (25 cents).
23. Mexico City is located in the mountains, at an altitude of 2240 m, so if you are flying from the coast or lowland parts, prepare to wear a sweater or jacket at the exit from the airport. It is warm during the day and quite cool in the morning and evening.
24. The metro in the capital of 20 million, in comparison with St. Petersburg and Moscow, is relatively uncrowded, even at rush hour.
25. In addition to the name, each metro station has a picture designation - this is done especially for those who cannot read.
26. There are parking lots for bicycles at some metro stations - many people get to the station by bike, hang it on special handrails in the lobby in front of the turnstiles and then go by metro.
27. Many merchants can be found in the metropolitan subway - both spreading their goods in the passages, and moving along the wagons. In funny, howling voices, like a church priest singing psalms, they offer to buy a variety of goods - food, clothing, shoes, souvenirs, etc. - often like ours "three for a dozen" =).
28. The sellers of music discs are visible, or rather heard the most. They enter the carriage with a backpack-column behind their backs and turn on a CD with hits so that they can be heard at the next station.
29. Free bike rental - a special city program for tourists operates in Mexico City. Bicycle hotspots are located close to many attractions.
30. Metrobus is a special type of transport in the capital, something between the metro and the bus. Outwardly this is a bus, but it consists of two parts and travels, most often, along a dedicated lane. The entrance to it is carried out through turnstiles at specially equipped stops.
31. The first subway car is intended for disabled people and women - such a separation is a forced measure of the state to protect women from the harassment of hot Mexicans.
32. There are a lot of currency exchange offices in tourist places, but it is best to change the currency in banks - the rate is always better. You must have a passport with you.
33. Double names are the norm for local people (for example, Addi Maria or Carlos Antonio). This has nothing to do with the parents, just at birth they give not one name, but two at once.
34. Medical care for the Mexican population is free, but, as the locals themselves say, it is of very poor quality, so if you want normal conditions and assistance, you need to go to a private clinic.
35. Education is also almost completely free. Various social programs are provided for schoolchildren - up to free meals and uniforms. The universities pay decent scholarships, but many still do not want to study - they go to work.
36. Quinceañera - one of the important events in the life of a Mexican girl, symbolizing the entry into adulthood. Quinceañera is celebrated on the 15th anniversary and is usually celebrated on a grand scale - with a ceremony in the church, flowers, gifts, professional photography and video filming, dancing and live music. The guests and the hero of the occasion dress in expensive outfits and jewelry to match the wedding.
37. The numbering of streets and houses in cities is very curious - streets are named by numbers: Calle 1, Calle 2. And even numbers go perpendicular to odd ones, and the address is listed as "Calle 2, house 56, between Calle 1 and Calle 3". This is very convenient and allows you to quickly find the desired street and house on it, even without having a map at hand.
38. One-way traffic is organized in many cities due to the fact that most of the streets are narrow. Moreover, the direction of movement alternates - for example, on Calle 1 in one direction, and on Calle 3 - in the other. There is two-way traffic on wide streets, they are usually called Avenida - avenues.
39. Most small towns and villages are built on the same principle: a square central square, where the cathedral gathering and the police building are located, and in the middle there is a park area.
40. Tricycles are the most common form of transport in small villages. Moreover, one wheel is located at the back, and 2 - in front and on them there is a large basket in which they carry everything in a row - from firewood to people.
41. Inhabitants of very poor villages live in reed huts. Often inside such a hut, the only "piece of furniture" is a hammock.
42. Chips, biscuits and Coca-Cola - a permanent set of products, which is in every shop, in every run-down village. The Coca-Cola inscription is here on all stores.
43. Insurance with a franchise is offered by most car rental companies. Finding full coverage insurance takes hard work.
44. The difference between "automatic" and "mechanics" when renting a car, as a rule, is not very significant - usually overpaid only $ 12 per week.
45. License plates are missing on many cars - instead of them there is a "technical passport" on the rear window.
46. Imprinting - this ancient procedure had to be subjected to a bank card to pay for a rented car. A few days later, the bank blocked the card due to the fact that it was "compromised". It is not known if this is due to imprinting or simply to spending in Mexico.
47. Heavy things, especially basins, are often worn by women on their heads.
48. Policemen patrolling the streets of the city, standing in the back of an SUV - a frequent occurrence in tourist cities.
49. Corruption is very common among police officers - in case of any violation on the road, they begin to gently offer to "resolve the issue on the spot."
50. The city of the Maya Indians, Chichen Itza, which belongs to the list of "7 new wonders of the world" is located on the Yucatan Peninsula.
Cosmopolitans obtain second citizenship of Saint Lucia to travel without visas to 145 countries, including the Schengen states, the UK, Andorra, and Singapore.
We tell you where Saint Lucia is located, what is worth seeing in the country, how the local population lives, and how much it will cost to rest on one of the favorite islands of Americans.
Amazing facts about Saint Lucia
1. Saint Lucia is a state located on the same name island in the Lesser Antilles archipelago, a former colony of Great Britain.
2. Saint Lucia is an island nation located between the islands of Saint Vincent and Martinique. The Atlantic Ocean borders the island to the east and the Caribbean Sea to the west.
3. Saint Lucia is located northwest of Barbados and south of Martinique. Saint Lucia is a sovereign island country in the Caribbean.
4. Saint Lucia is currently the only country in the world named after a woman: Saint Lucy of Syracuse. This Christian saint and martyr is the patroness of people with vision problems.
5. Corresponding the name of the island on which this Caribbean state is now located was given by French sailors who were shipwrecked next to it on the day of this saint's holiday (December 13). This holiday is celebrated to this day in Catholic and Protestant countries.
6. Contrary to the earlier opinion, Christopher Columbus did not discover this island. True, the island was indeed part of the route along which the world-famous explorer walked, but the Columbus team did not land on it.
7. The first people on this island were not Europeans. According to the results of research by historians and archaeologists, the island was initially inhabited by the Arawak Indian tribe during the settlement from the continental part of South America.
8. The Arawaks inhabited the region from the 2nd millennium BC to the 1st millennium AD. The population of these Indians began to decrease significantly with the arrival of Europeans in America, who brought smallpox and other deadly diseases to the natives.
9. In 1550, the French pirate Francois Le Clerc founded the first European settlement on Pigeon Island, located near Saint Lucia and now part of the country of the same name.
10. Saint Lucia has 158 kilometers (98 miles) of coastline.
11. The area of the Caribbean state is 617 square kilometers. This is approximately 1.5 times less than the area of Kyiv (839 square kilometers) and two times larger than the area of Minsk (349 square kilometers). Also, the size of St. Lucia is 3.5 times larger than the Washington, DC (USA) area.
12. The population of Saint Lucia is about 188 thousand people. This is almost 800 times less than in the Russian Federation.
13. The local population accounts for only about 0.002% of Earth's total population. The country is in 193rd place in the world ranking of countries in terms of population (between Samoa and Kiribati).
14. The island often changed hands. The French were the first European settlers to settle on the island. In 1660 they made a peace treaty with the native Indians.
15. At the same time, the island has a long colonial history. In the 17th and 18th centuries alone, control of the territory changed hands between the British and the French 14 times. As the island frequently changed hands between British and French colonists, Saint Lucia was also known as the "Helena of the West Indies."
16. In 1814, the British finally took control of this place. Between 1958 and 1962, the island was a member of the Federation of the West Indies. In 1979, Saint Lucia became an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations, an organization created by the United Kingdom.
17. Saint Lucia declared independence from the British Empire (now the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) on 22 February 1979. The islanders celebrate this holiday very actively since many of them witnessed the proclamation of the independence of their homeland.
18. Like most Caribbean countries, Saint Lucia is part of the British Commonwealth of Nations. Queen Elizabeth II is still considered the head of this state, represented by a governor-general. According to the constitution, it can be any citizen of the Commonwealth, appointed by the will of the monarch. A local native is usually selected for this post based on the country's head of government's recommendation.
19. The Royal Police Force includes a special forces unit and the Coast Guard.
20. Administratively, the country is divided into 11 parishes. There are local self-government bodies - city and village councils and administrations.
21. Having a volcanic origin, the island of St. Lucia is more mountainous than most other islands located in the Caribbean.
MOUNTAINS IN SAINT LUCIA
22. Rising 950 meters, Mount Jimi is the highest point among the ridges of wooded mountains that divide the island from north to south.
23. Two other large local mountains form the Piton chain, the most famous landmark of Saint Lucia and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
24. Gros Piton and Petit Piton are two mountains that rise sharply from the Caribbean coast and surround a small bay. The Piton Mitan ridge interconnects them.
25. The low mountains located in the central part of the island are covered with forests in which many orchids grow. Numerous rivers and streams flow down from the hills, forming small waterfalls.
26. The climate of the island is tropical, with trade winds. The average monthly temperature is around 26°C. The dry season lasts from January to April and the rainy season from May to August. In September-October, "Indian summer" comes, reminiscent of "Indian summer" in Russia.
CASTRIES - THE CAPITAL PORT OF THE STATE
27. The bulk of the population are blacks and mulattoes - the descendants of enslaved people brought from Africa after the extermination of the Indians.
28. The official language is English, although a large part of the population speaks Patois, the local dialect of French.
29. The modern symbol of this country is a parrot; the past one is an iguana. Since 1980, the national symbol of Saint Lucia has officially been a parrot, found only on the same name island. A parrot with a green plumage color, a blue-violet forehead, and front of the head, blue head, ears, and cheeks inhabits the island's tropical forests, living on mountain slopes at an altitude of up to 1 thousand meters above sea level.
30. Now, this bird is on the verge of extinction. The damage to the bird population was caused by many years of felling and uprooting old trees, replacing forests with plantations, and hunters and birders. At the end of the last century, about four hundred individuals were in the wild. Now parrots are under state protection.
31. Interestingly, before the arrival of Europeans, a completely different animal was the island's symbol. The first inhabitants of St. Lucia, among the Arawaks who arrived from South America, called this place Ioanalao. It means "land of the iguanas."
32. Most islanders live in the coastal part of Saint Lucia at the foot of the mountain range. About 60 thousand people live in the island's northern region, mainly in the capital city of Castries. The Indians have descendants. And even today, ancient Arawak languages are spoken by a small number of people from Saint Lucia, as well as neighboring island nations such as Grenada, Jamaica, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba.
33. Multilingualism is a common socio-cultural phenomenon in the Caribbean island. Although the official language of Saint Lucia is English, Patois Creole and Queyol French are spoken by 95 percent of the population.
34. In this regard, the islanders bypass most other peoples. Indeed, according to the latest research, only about 75% of the world's population speaks two or more languages (multilingualism) to one degree or another.
35. Although plantation slavery was abolished in the island nation as early as 1834, Saint Lucia remained an island dependent on agricultural production and cheap manual labor for a long time.
36. Agriculture was concentrated on the cultivation of sugar cane. In 1964, sugar cane plantations were converted to banana production.
37. Bananas are still the main crop on the island to this day, complemented by the production of coconuts, cocoa, citrus fruits, spices, cassava, and sustainable fishing industry.
38. But Saint Lucia is not a "banana republic." Rapidly developing since the 70s of the last century, tourism is vital to the economy of the Caribbean state.
39. The most significant number of tourists visit the island by sea on cruise ships through one of the five major ports. The completion of the construction of a new terminal for Quantum-class cruise ships gave an enormous impetus to the development of cruise tourism.
40. Ports are connected with the capital and other cities by a ring road that runs throughout the island. Tourists here can rent not only cars but also yachts or helicopters.
41. Islanders lived long in warmth and were surrounded by lush vegetation. The average life expectancy in Saint Lucia is 72 years. The officially registered literacy rate of the local population is about 67 percent of the people.
42. This Caribbean island nation is the same size as Islay in Scotland. And if Islay is known for single malt Scotch whiskey (Laphroaig or Lagavulin), then St. Lucia has become famous for slightly different alcoholic beverages. We are talking about popular varieties of rum, such as Chairman's Reserve and Rodney's Reserve.
43. To attract more wealthy guests to the island, its authorities periodically arrange large-scale cultural events. So, the islanders hold a variety of sports festivals.
44. An annual jazz festival is also held there, attracting tourists and musicians from all over the world to the resorts of St. Lucia. The festival's grand finale takes place on Pigeon Island, located to the north of the country's main island of Saint Lucia, also called similarly.
45. Despite a relatively modest population, this country can boast of having two Nobel Prize winners among its citizens at once. Sir Arthur Lewis, born in Saint Lucia in 1915, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1979. Derek Walcott, awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992, was born in Castries in 1930.
46. As a result, Saint Lucia ranks second in the world rankings regarding the ratio of Nobel Prize winners compared to the total population. Only the Faroe Islands (one Nobel laureate out of 49,000) have a higher density of Nobel laureates.
47. Orchids and a range of other exotic plants will grow in the lush rainforests of this island country. Saint Lucia is also adorned with pristine white and black sand beaches. The average annual temperature there is around 27ºC.
48. The islanders did not win the Olympics, despite their love of cricket. There are no Olympic medals in the piggy bank of Saint Lucia athletes. None. The most considerable Olympic achievement of the islanders was the performance of a team of six successfully qualified athletes at the Olympic Games in Atlanta (USA) in 1996.
49. But this does not prevent Caribbean athletes from keeping their bodies in good shape. Fortunately, there are more than enough sports infrastructure facilities in Saint Lucia. And, of course, we are talking not only about the numerous pools next to the no less numerous local hotel complexes. The island also has several grounds for playing cricket, which is widespread and very popular.
50. Tourism and bananas are the primary sources of foreign exchange for Saint Lucia.
51. Society in Saint Lucia is matriarchal rather than patriarchal. On this island, women are usually entirely responsible for running the household. They manage the home and raise their children. And in most cases, they do it with little or no help from men.
52. From a very early age, girls on the island receive more education from their parents than boys. This continues in school and colleges. For this reason, more and more women are taking on leadership roles, making careers while men continue to do unskilled work.
53. Many islanders practice the use of traditional therapies and alternative medicine. The island even has several relevant medical facilities. Some locals have a wealth of experience using plants and herbs combined into various tinctures, poultices, and remedies.
54. There are also practicing shamans in the country (locally known as Obeah or Tchenbwaorzeb). With the help of spells, these people treat not only medical ailments but also mental disorders and troubles of a supernatural origin. But even with traditional medicine in Saint Lucia, everything is in order.
55. Saint Lucia is a trendy destination for weddings and honeymoons.
56. The island state is also considered a natural paradise for divers. The waters of the jurisdiction offer them multi-layered underwater walls, shipwrecks, and coral reefs that form unique ecosystems with very colorful inhabitants.
57. There are two airports in St. Lucia - St. Lucia Huanora and Castries George Charles. The airport in Castries is intended for local airlines, while Huanora serves international flights connecting the island with New York, London, Toronto, Miami, Chicago, Montreal, and other major cities.
58. Citizenship in this country gives many bonuses. For example, being the owner of her passport, you can easily open bank accounts worldwide and freely invest in different parts of the world.
59. Saint Lucia is also an excellent base for expanding business globally.
60. Saint Lucia is part of the Commonwealth, led by Great Britain. It is a member of the UN and its specialized organizations, the Organization of American States and the Organizations of the Eastern Caribbean States, the Caribbean Community, and the Caribbean Common Market.