|Square||10 991 km²|
|Form of government||a constitutional monarchy|
|Population||2 930 050 people|
|Continent||located in the Caribbean|
Welcome to our website Interessno.ru. Jamaica is one of the most popular island states among tourists in the world. Every year this country is visited by about 5 million people from all over the world. The island, with an area of only 10,991 km², attracts tourists with its relaxed atmosphere, sandy beaches, tropical weather, rich culture and live music.
And today we decided to present you a number of interesting facts about this country.
The indigenous inhabitants of Jamaica were the Taino (Arawak) Indians, who sailed to the island by canoe from Panama. The Taino gave the island the name “xaymaca”, which is translated from the native language of the Indians as “land of forest and water”. The Spaniards changed this name to what we know today.
The Spanish navigator Christopher Columbus landed in Jamaica in 1494. Then he announced that this island belongs to Spain. However, the Spaniards were upset by the fact that there was no gold or other minerals on the island. For this reason, they paid very little attention to this territory, which is why they were very easily defeated by British explorers led by General Robert Venables and Admiral William Penn, who landed on the island in 1655.
The island was in British possession until 1962. Jamaica became the first British Caribbean colony to gain independence.
When British colonists conquered the island from the Spaniards in 1655, there were about 400 slaves from Africa. The British, unlike the Spaniards, took up the territory, planting sugarcane plantations there. They brought slaves from Africa en masse to work on the plantations. Within 100 years, about 200,000 African slaves were working on plantations in Jamaica.
That is why about 90% of Jamaicans are of African descent.
There are practically no snakes here, despite the ideal climate for their reproduction and existence. The thing is that in 1872 mongooses were brought to the island to control rodents on reed plantations. Mongooses began to destroy not only rodents, but also practically got rid of the entire population of snakes. The expansion of agricultural land has also led to a decrease in the number of snakes on the island.
The two most popular genres of music in Jamaica are reggae and dancehall. Reggae music originated in the country in the late 60s. Thanks to the Jamaican Bob Marley, this style of music spread far beyond the borders of the country and became very popular in the UK, USA, Africa, etc.
Dancehall emerged in the 1980s as a more flamboyant and aggressive form of reggae.
Of the seven fastest male runners in the world, four are Jamaicans. These are Usain Bolt, Johan Blake, Asafa Powell and Nesta Carter. But such results of the Jamaicans are not accidental.
Athletics plays an important role in almost all schools in the country. This is facilitated by an annual competition among schools called the Interschool Athletics Championships.
Here one official language is English. The national language is Jamaican Creole (known as Patois). Almost all Jamaicans know English, as this language is taught in all schools and universities.
As for the local patois dialect, it is a mixture of English, Spanish and some African words. Among themselves, Jamaicans mostly speak Patois, and communicate with tourists in English.
Aki is the national fruit of Jamaica. It is a red fruit with shiny black seeds and pale yellow flesh. But at the same time, you can eat aki only in ripe form. If the fruit is not fully ripe, you can get poisoned and even die. The fruits are poisonous until they open naturally. The seeds are always poisonous. Raw fruits and seeds contain hypoglycine, a highly toxic organic compound.
This fruit also forms the basis of a national dish called Ackee and saltfish, which is made with salted cod and aki.
The Rastafari movement began in Jamaica in the 1930s and has since spread to varying degrees throughout the world. Rastafarianism is a religious movement based on the personality cult of the last emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie I. Many Rastafarians consider Haile Selassie I (name before the coronation of Ras Tafari) an earthly incarnation of God. Rastafarians also believe that people of African descent throughout the world are exiles and are imprisoned in Babylon. However, it is worth noting that despite the birthplace of this religious movement, less than 5% of Jamaica’s population is Rastafari.
The most famous spy in the history of cinema is 007 agent James Bond. And many people do not even suspect that the British spy was born thanks to the fact that its creator Ian Fleming served in Jamaica. Fleming was very pleased with the island, and he decided to buy a home there.
It was at his Goldeneye Estate that Fleming wrote his brilliant super-spy Bond novels.
The highest point in the country is the Blue Mountain Peak, which is 2,256 meters above sea level. From the top of this mountain, tourists can see both the southern and northern coasts of the island. But the Blue Mountain is famous not only for its landscapes and the fact that it is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. This mountain is famous for its coffee plantations. One of the rarest and most expensive coffees in the world is grown here: Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee.
This coffee was introduced to Jamaica in 1728 and has since become one of the most popular in the world due to its specific taste. Most of Blue Mountain coffee is exported to Japan (about 80%), the rest (about 20%) is sold worldwide.
The Jamaica flag is the only flag in the world that does not include red, blue or white. Until 2017, there were two such flags: Jamaican and Mauritanian. But in 2017, two red stripes were added to the Mauritanian flag, making the Jamaican flag unique in its kind. That’s all, dear readers. We hope that the information from the publication was useful and interesting for you.