It has Irish roots and is covered in lush, green rainforest, with exotic black sand beaches. A unique island, it is renowned for the friendliness of the islanders and offers an excellent opportunity for nature lovers and sunseekers alike.
In 1995, Soufriere Hills Volcano erupted, destroying the former capital of Plymouth.
Today, Montserrat has risen from the ashes with the opening of a new airport, and a new Capital city.
Tourists are starting to consider the island as a serious tourist destination again.
Montserrat was known as the jetset island of the Caribbean.
Once the home of George Martin’s Air Studios, where Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney recorded Ebony and Ivory, The island has seen many famous visitors including Elton John, Princess Margaret, Sting and Eric Clapton to name a few.
George Martin is continuing the legacy and is currently involved in the development of a new cultural center on the island.
Stunning views which have been likened to ‘Dante’s Inferno’ can be seen from St George’s Hill which overlooks both the volcano and what remains of Plymouth.
Because of the volcano, most of the beaches have silver gray sand, some of which are surrounded by rainforest which makes them both picturesque and unique.
It's interesting that a British territory, with such a French sounding name, has a strong Irish culture. You can easily Island hop to the neighboring islands of St Kitts, Nevis, St Maarten (Dutch side), Antigua, and Guadeloupe.
During the turtle egg laying season, you may see baby turtles hatch.
This is generally August and September, but you are quite likely to see turtles in the sea here at any time.
Magnificent reefs surround the island,, some easily accessible from the beach as at Woodlands Beach, others further out at sea.
Festivals include a colorful month long Christmas festival, including calypso competitions, parades, bands and festivities.
Irish roots are celebrated on St Patrick’s Day
There are plenty of restaurants and bars in Montserrat. Eating out is cheap and you can have anything from international cuisine to local specialities such as goat water (rich spicy gravy with goat) to Mountain Chicken (Montserratian frogs!).
One of the most popular restaurants is Danny and Margaret’s ‘Jumping Jack’ Beach Bar where you can sample Danny’s freshly caught fish with delicious side-dishes and puddings. The food is matched only by the fantastic views of Old Road Bay Beach and the volcano.
There are numerous other places to eat, ranging from BBQ night at the Vue Pointe Hotel, with musical entertainment and a large variety of dishes, to lobster at Tina’s Restaurant. Local dishes such as spare ribs or fried chicken can be bought at many of the roadside stalls. Rum and coke is the national drink!
International flights are to Antigua, and there is an affordable Winair connection on to Montserrat from Antigua.
The beaches on Montserrat are serene and uncrowded.
You are unlikely to find more than a handful of people on most of the beaches at any time.
The island's flag is dark blue with the UK flag in the top left quarter. The country's coat of arms is centered on the right hand half of the Montserrat flag.
The coat of arms is a woman with a yellow harp, and her arm around a black cross. The female figure is a symbol of freedom for Ireland since many of the islands residents speak with an Irish accent.
A large number of Irish people were sent to Montserrat by Oliver Cromwell back in the 17th century.
The volcano has also been a blessing in disguise for the island's coral reefs.
A decade has passed with a virtual absence of divers, so the reefs here have thrived without human contact and are of marine park quality.
Meals generally cost between $9.00 US - $20.00 US and the average price of an alcoholic drink and mixer is only $3.00 US.
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Remains active, and is one of the most studied in the world. This has been a great draw for scientists, tourists and independent travelers.
The only white sand beach is at Rendezvous Bay and can be reached by hiking over the Silver Hills or by water taxi from Little Bay. After walking over the hills, you are rewarded by a pristine white sand beach, covered in coral and pink shells with crystal clear blue water. It is an amazing place for a day’s outing.
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Montserrat , Known as the
‘Emerald Isle’ of the Caribbean'