Situated east of the Virgin Islands, north of St. Kitts, Nevis, and St. Barts, Anguilla is still one of the Caribbean's best-kept secrets. This small, tranquil island is ideal for those seeking a laid-back beach getaway. Among the main attractions of the island are spectacular and ecologically important coral reefs perfect for snorkeling and scuba diving, over 30 unspoiled beaches, and an 18-hole championship golf course designed by Greg Norman.
Anguilla is a self-governing overseas British territory.
13,500 - Approximately three quarters of the inhabitants of Anguillians are native; most of the remaining quarter are from the United States, United Kingdom, St Kitts & Nevis, the Dominican Republic, and Jamaica.
The heritage of Anguilla's people created the diverse culture currently present on the island. The Amerindian tribes from South America were the island's first inhabitants. In the seventeenth century, the English colonized Anguilla and brought over African slaves. Slavery in Anguilla was abolished in 1834. Today, most of the residents of Anguilla are of African descent, although there is a growing Caucasian population. The island has an estimated adult literacy rate of 95%.
The economy of Anguilla is primarily based on luxury tourism, offshore banking, and fishing.
The Eastern Caribbean dollar is the local currency. The exchange rate is fixed to the U.S. dollar at approximately about $2.70 (EC) to $1 (USD). While the U.S. dollar is widely accepted, store prices will be listed in Eastern Caribbean dollars and change will be given in local currency. The airport and most hotels in Anguilla have currency exchanges, but it is better to exchange currency at commercial banks because they give a better rate, and you can save money by not using foreign currency for purchases. The island possesses modern banking facilities, including five ATMs. Most major businesses, hotels, and restaurants accept major credit cards, although it's a good idea to call ahead and ask just to be sure.
Sunrise and Sunset
Sunrise: Between 6:00 a.m. and 6:30 a.m.
Sunset: Between 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
*Depends on time of year
110 Volts alternating at 60 cycles per second
Like most of the Caribbean, Anguilla is in the Atlantic time zone.
The water is potable; for the cautious, however, bottled water is available throughout the island.
The people of Anguilla are predominantly of the Christian faith, and Anglicans and Methodists are the most popular denominations. Seventh Day Adventists, Baptists, and Roman Catholics are also represented. More than a dozen churches on the island (one every two miles) make attending religious services quite easy. The birthplace of Robert Athlyi Rogers, author of The Holy Piby, Anguilla also has a minor Rastafarian influence.
The area code for Anguilla is 264. Public pay phones, many of which accept phone cards that can be purchased at shops and hotels, are available throughout the island.
The Anguillan is a popular local newspaper on the island and “What We Do in Anguilla” is a monthly magazine for tourists. Access to radio and cable television is prominent in Anguilla.
The Valley, Anguilla's capital city, has a post office that is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., and the island also offers several international courier services, such as Federal Express and UPS. Airmail to the United States and Canada generally takes one to two weeks to reach its destination, while mail addressed to the United Kingdom and other parts of Europe may take up to three weeks. It costs EC$1.50 to send postcards and letters up to a half ounce to the United States, Canada, or Europe. Postage is slightly higher to send mail to Australia or New Zealand.
Located in the Valley, the Anguilla Public Library is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., and Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The facility has approximately 14,000 books available and offers high-speed Internet access for a small fee.
Anguilla is a casual island. Slacks, polo shirts, skirts, sundresses and sandals are acceptable everywhere. Men should leave jackets, button down shirts and socks at home. Women should leave fancy clothing.