Bermuda is a relatively remote island territory found in the North Atlantic Ocean. Bermuda is situated about six hundred and forty miles off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, although it is a British territory. Bermuda is unusual among islands in the Atlantic and Caribbean in that it was uninhabited before the arrival of British explorers and settlers. Although Bermuda’s history has been dominated by Britain, the first explorer to come across the island of Bermuda was a Spanish sailor named Juan de Bermudez. Bermuda, also known as the Bermudas (in recognition of the smaller islands and islets off the main landmass) or Somers Isles, takes its name from the only native inhabitants of the island – small pigs. Bermuda was first settled in the year 1609, when Britain established a permanent community on the island. Bermuda’s capital, Saint George’s, was founded three years later, and is the oldest continually inhabited British settlement in either North or South America. Bermuda’s affiliation with the British Empire helped lead the island to the economic strength that it has enjoyed for a considerable period of time. Like many nations in the Caribbean, a strong finance and tourist industry has led to a very high per capita GDP and standard of living.
Bermuda is a relatively small but densely populated territory, covering a total of less than twenty one square miles but hosting a population of nearly seventy thousand residents. Bermuda is estimated to have the highest per capita GDP in the world, although that calculation is generally reserved for sovereign nations as opposed to territories such as Bermuda. Bermuda is subdivided into several different parishes, and includes a grand total of one hundred and eighty one different islands. Bermuda has a slightly cooler climate than many Caribbean islands, although the temperature rarely drops below sixty five degrees or moves above eighty five degrees. Bermuda has some of the most expensive properties in the hemisphere, with the average home clocking in at about one million dollars. Bermuda has a strong tourist sector, but the largest component of Bermuda’s GDP is finance. Bermuda is home to a large number of insurance company headquarters, as well as the Bermuda Stock Exchange.
Bermuda has an outstanding education system, with public institutions including eighteen primary schools, five primary schools, a special school, and two high schools in addition to facilities dedicated towards students with special needs. Bermuda also boasts Bermuda College in addition to six private schools. Bermuda’s shoreline is defined by strikingly beautiful pink sand beaches and clear waters, which together draw a considerable number of tourists every year. One particularly popular activity is scuba diving, which allows visitors to enjoy the marine life, offshore wrecks, and coral reefs in the waters off of Bermuda. Some notable attractions in Bermuda include the Royal Naval Dockyard, the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum, and Zoo, as well as the Bermuda Maritime Museum and the Crystal Caves. Bermuda boasts a diverse and unique culture, which shows the influence of a variety of different ethnic groups and nations. Calypso music and reggae remain popular in Bermuda, and the island has produced a number of authors, artists, and actors throughout the years. A number of predominately British sports are popular in Bermuda, including soccer, cricket, and yachting.