In a teeny tiny corner of the Caribbean Sea is a little island called St. Vincent and its little brother and sister islands collectively known as the Grenadines. Many people reading this may never even have heard of such a place, but for many that have, there is a magic about the islands that makes St. Vincent and the Grenadines hard to forget.
This post seeks to explore St. Vincent and the Grenadines from a view that is not that of the traditional travel blog, i.e. from a tourist’s point of view, but from the point of view of locals who even after living here for years can’t seem to help falling under the spell of the place again and again.
St. Vincent at a Glance
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines was colonized by both the British and the
French and is as a result influenced somewhat by both cultures.
- It gained political independence from Britain on October 27, 1979.
- It has a population of over 120,000 people.
- The nation is made up of the main island, St. Vincent and a chain of smaller islands and islets known as the Grenadines.
- The Capital of St. Vincent is Kingstown or “the City of Arches” and is found on
the southern coast of the main island.
Kingstown resides on the sea like many Caribbean capitals, which were also founded around sea ports, and were the trade centres and main money-makers from days past.
Kingstown is different in that unlike many other Caribbean capitals which have developed into mini metropolises, it still maintains a hint of the Old World. The walkways are of the most charming cobblestone and here and there interlaced between the more modern buildings one can catch glimpses of gingerbread fretwork from the wooden houses that have been cleverly converted into business places.
You won’t find a Starbucks on every corner here (or any for that matter) or a Barnes and Noble down the block. Most of the businesses in Kingstown are unique to St. Vincent. The only familiar sign in Kingstown may be a KFC, which has become a staple of the Vincentian fast food industry. So be prepared to say adios to McDonald’s and
hola to some proper Vincentian callaloo soup. Yum!
We’ll wrap it up here for now but, believe me, we haven’t even started on Kingstown yet…
‘Til next time!