If we tell you that there are some countries in the world which are smaller than any city or town in India, then maybe you will consider it a joke but it is not a joke but it is true. There are some countries in the world which are very small in terms of area and population. And the funny thing is that there are not only one half of this country but more than ten. The country is a landmass having a separate national entity. A few countries are so tiny that some markets and regions in Indian Metro cities are bigger than them. Sometimes, these small nations are also referred to as microstates. These small countries have their distinct culture, currency, a system of governance, etc. Here, we have listed the smallest countries in the world. These are beautiful countries and some are among the richest nations in the world. These modern city-states have populations as low as 1000 contained in just 0.20 square miles of area. Needless to say, these nations are a lot smaller than you might even think. Most of these are European countries or the minuscule islands in the South Pacific, the Caribbean, and the Indian Ocean. The most amazing part is – from financial status to religious influence, many of these tiny nations are very powerful.
Vatican City, officially the Vatican City State (Italian: Stato della Città del Vaticano; Latin: Status Civitatis Vaticanae), is the Holy See’s independent city state, an enclave within Rome, Italy. The Vatican City State, also known as The Vatican, became independent from Italy with the Lateran Treaty (1929), and it is a distinct territory under “full ownership, exclusive dominion, and sovereign authority and jurisdiction” of the Holy See, itself a sovereign entity of international law, which maintains the city state’s temporal, diplomatic, and spiritual independence. With an area of 49 hectares (121 acres) and a population of about 825, it is the smallest sovereign state in the world by both area and population.As governed by the Holy See, the Vatican City State is an ecclesiastical or sacerdotal-monarchical state (a type of theocracy) ruled by the pope who is the bishop of Rome and head of the Catholic Church. The highest state functionaries are all Catholic clergy of various national origins. After the Avignon Papacy (1309–1437), the popes have mainly resided at the Apostolic Palace within what is now Vatican City, although at times residing instead in the Quirinal Palace in Rome or elsewhere.
The Holy See dates back to Early Christianity and is the principal episcopal see of the Catholic Church, which has approximately 1.313 billion baptised Catholic Christians in the world as of 2017 in the Latin Church and 23 Eastern Catholic Churches. The independent state of Vatican City, on the other hand, came into existence on 11 February 1929 by the Lateran Treaty between the Holy See and Italy, which spoke of it as a new creation, not as a vestige of the much larger Papal States (756–1870), which had previously encompassed much of central Italy.
Within the Vatican City are religious and cultural sites such as St. Peter’s Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican Museums. They feature some of the world’s most famous paintings and sculptures. The unique economy of Vatican City is supported financially by donations from the faithful, by the sale of postage stamps and souvenirs, fees for admission to museums, and sales of publications.
Monaco, officially the Principality of Monaco, is a sovereign city-state and microstate on the French Riviera in Western Europe. It is bordered by France to the north, east, west and by the Mediterranean Sea to the south. The principality is home to 38,682 residents, of which 9,486 are Monegasque nationals; it is widely recognised for being one of the most expensive and wealthiest places in the world. The official language is French, although Monégasque, Italian and English are spoken and understood by a sizeable group.With an area of 2.1 km2 (0.81 sq mi), it is one of the smallest sovereign states in Europe and the second-smallest in the world, after Vatican City. Its 19,009 inhabitants per square kilometre (49,230/sq mi) make it the most densely-populated sovereign state in the world. Monaco has a land border of 5.47 km (3.40 mi) and the world’s shortest coastline of approximately 3.83 km (2.38 mi); it has a width that varies between 1,700 and 349 m (5,577 and 1,145 ft). The highest point in the state is a narrow pathway named Chemin des Révoires on the slopes of Mont Agel, in the Les Révoires ward, which is 161 metres (528 feet) above sea level. The principality is about 15 km (9.3 mi) from the border with Italy. Its most populous ward is Larvotto/Bas Moulins with a population of 5,443 as of 2008. Through land reclamation, Monaco’s land mass has expanded by 20 percent. In 2005, it had an area of only 1.974 km2 (0.762 sq mi).
The principality is governed under a form of constitutional monarchy, with Prince Albert II as head of state. Although Prince Albert II is a constitutional monarch, he wields immense political power; the Minister of State is the head of government. The officeholder can be either a Monegasque or French citizen; the monarch consults with the Government of France before an appointment. The House of Grimaldi has ruled Monaco, with brief interruptions, since 1297. The state’s sovereignty was officially recognised by the Franco-Monegasque Treaty of 1861, with Monaco becoming a full United Nations voting member in 1993. Despite Monaco’s independence and separate foreign policy, its defence is the responsibility of France. However, Monaco does maintain two small military units.
Economic development was spurred in the late 19th century with the opening of the country’s first casino, Monte Carlo, as well as a railway connection to Paris. Since then, Monaco’s mild climate, scenery and gambling facilities have contributed to the principality’s status as a tourist destination and recreation centre for the rich. In more recent years, Monaco has become a major banking centre and has sought to diversify its economy into the services sector and small, high-value-added, non-polluting industries. The state has no income tax, low business taxes and is well known for being a tax haven. Over 30% of the resident population are millionaires, with real estate prices reaching €100,000 ($142,000) per square metre in 2018.
Monaco is not formally a part of the European Union (EU), but it participates in certain EU policies, including customs and border controls. Through its relationship with France, Monaco uses the euro as its sole currency; prior to this it used the Monégasque franc. Monaco joined the Council of Europe in 2004 and is a member of the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF). It is also the host of the annual street circuit motor race Monaco Grand Prix, one of the original Grands Prix of Formula One and birthplace of Scuderia Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc. The principality has a club football team, AS Monaco, who compete in the French Ligue 1 and have become French champions on multiple occasions. A centre of research into marine conservation, Monaco is home to one of the world’s first protected marine habitats, an Oceanographic Museum and the International Atomic Energy Agency Environment Labs, which is the only marine laboratory in the United Nations structure.
San Marino, officially the Republic of San Marino, also known as the Most Serene Republic of San Marino (Italian: Serenissima Repubblica di San Marino), is a microstate in Southern Europe completely enclosed by Italy. Located on the northeastern side of the Apennine Mountains, San Marino covers a land area of just over 61 km2 (24 sq mi), and has a population of 33,562. Its capital is the City of San Marino and its largest settlement is Dogana. The capital is set at the highest point of the country on a steep mountain. San Marino’s official language is Italian, although Romagnol is the historical language and still in existence in a non-official capacity.
The country derives its name from Saint Marinus, a stonemason from the then Roman island of Rab, in modern-day Croatia. Born in AD 275, Marinus participated in the reconstruction of Rimini’s city walls after their destruction by Liburnian pirates. Marinus then went on to found an independent monastic community on Monte Titano in AD 301; thus, San Marino lays claim to being the oldest extant sovereign state, as well as the oldest constitutional republic.San Marino’s politics are ruled by its constitution, which dictates that every six months San Marino’s parliament must elect two Captains Regent. The Captains Regent have equal powers, and are free to exercise them within the limits of the constitution and parliamentary legislation until their term expires.
The country’s economy is mainly based on finance, industry, services and tourism. It is one of the wealthiest countries in the world in terms of GDP per capita, with a figure comparable to the most developed European regions. San Marino is considered to have a highly stable economy, with one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe, no national debt and a budget surplus.
Nauru ( nah-OO-roo or NOW-roo; Nauruan: Naoero), officially the Republic of Nauru (Nauruan: Repubrikin Naoero) and formerly known as Pleasant Island, is an island country and microstate in Oceania, in the Central Pacific. Its nearest neighbour is Banaba Island in Kiribati, 300 km (190 mi) to the east. It further lies northwest of Tuvalu, 1,300 km (810 mi) northeast of the Solomon Islands, east-northeast of Papua New Guinea, southeast of the Federated States of Micronesia and south of the Marshall Islands. With only a 21 km2 (8.1 sq mi) area, Nauru is the third-smallest country in the world behind Vatican City, and Monaco, making it the smallest republic. Additionally, its population of 10,670 is the world’s second smallest, after Vatican City.
Settled by people from Micronesia and Polynesia c. 1000 BC, Nauru was annexed and claimed as a colony by the German Empire in the late 19th century. After World War I, Nauru became a League of Nations mandate administered by Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. During World War II, Nauru was occupied by Japanese troops, and was bypassed by the Allied advance across the Pacific. After the war ended, the country entered into United Nations trusteeship. Nauru gained its independence in 1968, and became a member of the Pacific Community (SPC) in 1969.
Nauru is a phosphate-rock island with rich deposits near the surface, which allowed easy strip mining operations. Its remaining phosphate resources are not economically viable for extraction. When the phosphate reserves were exhausted, and the island’s environment had been seriously harmed by mining, the trust that had been established to manage the island’s wealth diminished in value. To earn income, Nauru briefly became a tax haven and illegal money laundering centre. From 2001 to 2008, and again from 2012, it accepted aid from the Australian Government in exchange for hosting the Nauru Regional Processing Centre, a controversial offshore Australian immigration detention facility. As a result of heavy dependence on Australia, some sources have identified Nauru as a client state of Australia. The sovereign state is a member of the United Nations, Pacific Islands Forum, Commonwealth of Nations and the African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States.
Tuvalu is counted as the fourth smallest country in the world. It is also located in the Pacific Ocean like Nauru. This country was previously under Britain. It became independent in 1978. Its area is 26 square kilometers. The population of this country is about 12,373. In terms of population, it is considered to be the third least populous country in the world. Only the Vatican and Nauru come to countries with less population than this.
Liechtenstein, officially the Principality of Liechtenstein, is a German-speaking microstate situated in the Alps and in the southwest of Central Europe. The principality is a semi-constitutional monarchy headed by the Prince of Liechtenstein; the Prince’s extensive powers are equivalent to those of a President in a semi-presidential system.
Liechtenstein is bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and Austria to the east and north. It is Europe’s fourth-smallest country, with an area of just over 160 square kilometres (62 square miles) and a population of 38,749. Divided into 11 municipalities, its capital is Vaduz, and its largest municipality is Schaan. It is also the smallest country to border two countries. Liechtenstein is one of only two doubly landlocked countries in the world, along with Uzbekistan.
Economically, Liechtenstein has one of the highest gross domestic products per person in the world when adjusted for purchasing power parity. The country has a strong financial sector centered in Vaduz. It was once known as a billionaire tax haven, but is no longer on any blacklists of uncooperative tax haven countries. An Alpine country, Liechtenstein is mountainous, making it a winter sport destination.
Liechtenstein is a member of the United Nations, the European Free Trade Association, and the Council of Europe. Although not a member of the European Union, it participates in both the Schengen Area and the European Economic Area. It has a customs union and a monetary union with Switzerland.
The Marshall Islands, officially the Republic of the Marshall Islands (Marshallese: Aolepān Aorōkin Ṃajeḷ), is an island country and an associated state of the United States near the Equator in the Pacific Ocean, slightly west of the International Date Line. Geographically, the country is part of the larger island group of Micronesia. The country’s population of 58,413 people (at the 2018 World Bank Census) is spread out over 29 coral atolls, comprising 1,156 individual islands and islets. The capital and largest city is Majuro. It has the largest portion of its territory made of water of any sovereign state, at 97.87%.
The islands share maritime boundaries with Wake Island to the north, Kiribati to the southeast, Nauru to the south, and Federated States of Micronesia to the west. About 52.3% of Marshall Islanders (27,797 at the 2011 Census) live on Majuro. Data from the United Nations indicates an estimated population in 2018 of 58,413. In 2016, 73.3% of the population were defined as being “urban”. The UN also indicates a population density of 295 per km2 (765 people per mi2) and its projected 2020 population is 59,190.Micronesian colonists reached the Marshall Islands using canoes circa 2nd millennium BC, with interisland navigation made possible using traditional stick charts. They eventually settled here. Islands in the archipelago were first explored by Europeans in the 1520s, starting with Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese explorer in the service of Spain, Juan Sebastián Elcano and Miguel de Saavedra. Spanish explorer Alonso de Salazar reported sighting an atoll in August 1526. Other expeditions by Spanish and English ships followed. The islands derive their name from John Marshall, who visited in 1788. The islands were historically known by the inhabitants as “jolet jen Anij” (Gifts from God).Spain claimed the islands in 1592, and the European powers recognized its sovereignty over the islands in 1874. They had been part of the Spanish East Indies formally since 1528. Later, Spain sold some of the islands to the German Empire in 1885, and they became part of German New Guinea that year, run by the trading companies doing business in the islands, particularly the Jaluit Company. In World War I, the Empire of Japan occupied the Marshall Islands, which, in 1920, the League of Nations combined with other former German territories to form the South Seas Mandate. During World War II, the United States took control of the islands in the Gilbert and Marshall Islands campaign in 1944. Nuclear testing began on Bikini Atoll in 1946 and concluded in 1958.
The US government formed the Congress of Micronesia in 1965, a plan for increased self-governance of Pacific islands. The Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands in 1979 provided independence to the Marshall Islands, whose constitution and president (Amata Kabua) were formally recognized by the US. Full sovereignty or self-government was achieved in a Compact of Free Association with the United States. Marshall Islands has been a member of the Pacific Community (SPC) since 1983 and a United Nations member state since 1991. Politically, the Marshall Islands is a parliamentary republic with an executive presidency in free association with the United States, with the US providing defense, subsidies, and access to U.S.-based agencies such as the Federal Communications Commission and the United States Postal Service. With few natural resources, the islands’ wealth is based on a service economy, as well as some fishing and agriculture; aid from the United States represents a large percentage of the islands’ gross domestic product. The country uses the United States dollar as its currency. In 2018, it also announced plans for a new cryptocurrency to be used as legal tender.The majority of the citizens of the Republic of Marshall Islands, formed in 1982, are of Marshallese descent, though there are small numbers of immigrants from the United States, China, Philippines, and other Pacific islands. The two official languages are Marshallese, which is one of the Oceanic languages, and English. Almost the entire population of the islands practices some religion: three-quarters of the country follows either the United Church of Christ – Congregational in the Marshall Islands (UCCCMI) or the Assemblies of God.
Malta in Maltese, officially known as the Republic of Malta (Maltese: Repubblika ta’ Malta) and formerly Melita, is a Southern European island country consisting of an archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea. It lies 80 km (50 mi) south of Italy, 284 km (176 mi) east of Tunisia, and 333 km (207 mi) north of Libya. With a population of about 515,000 over an area of 316 km2 (122 sq mi), Malta is the world’s tenth smallest country in area and fourth most densely populated sovereign country. Its capital is Valletta, which is the smallest national capital in the European Union by area at 0.8 km2 (0.31 sq mi). The official and national language is Maltese, which is descended from Sicilian Arabic that developed during the Emirate of Sicily, while English serves as the second official language. Italian and Sicilian also previously served as official and cultural languages on the island for centuries, with Italian being an official language in Malta until 1934 and a majority of the current Maltese population being at least conversational in the Italian language.
Malta has been inhabited since approximately 5900 BC. Its location in the centre of the Mediterranean has historically given it great strategic importance as a naval base, with a succession of powers having contested and ruled the islands, including the Phoenicians and Carthaginians, Romans, Greeks, Arabs, Normans, Aragonese, Knights of St. John, French, and British. Most of these foreign influences have left some sort of mark on the country’s ancient culture.
Malta became a British colony in 1813, serving as a way station for ships and the headquarters for the British Mediterranean Fleet. It was besieged by the Axis powers during World War II and was an important Allied base for operations in North Africa and the Mediterranean.
The British Parliament passed the Malta Independence Act in 1964, giving Malta independence from the United Kingdom as the State of Malta, with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state and queen. The country became a republic in 1974. It has been a member state of the Commonwealth of Nations and the United Nations since independence, and joined the European Union in 2004; it became part of the eurozone monetary union in 2008.
Malta has had Christians since the time of Early Christianity, though was predominantly Muslim while under Arab rule, at which time Christians were tolerated. Norman rulers expelled all Muslims who did not convert, and Aragonese rulers expelled unconverted Jews. Today, Catholicism is the state religion, but the Constitution of Malta guarantees freedom of conscience and religious worship.Malta is a tourist destination with its warm climate, numerous recreational areas, and architectural and historical monuments, including three UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni, Valletta, and seven megalithic temples which are some of the oldest free-standing structures in the world.
Maldives, officially the Republic of Maldives, is a small archipelagic state in South Asia, situated in the Arabian Sea of the Indian Ocean. It lies southwest of Sri Lanka and India, about 700 kilometres (430 mi) from the Asian continent’s mainland. The chain of 26 atolls stretches from Ihavandhippolhu Atoll in the north to Addu Atoll in the south (across the Equator). Comprising a territory spanning roughly 298 square kilometres (115 sq mi), Maldives is one of the world’s most geographically dispersed sovereign states as well as the smallest Asian country by land area and population, with around 515,696 inhabitants. Malé is the capital and the most populated city, traditionally called the “King’s Island” where the ancient royal dynasties ruled for its central location.The Maldivian Archipelago is located on the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge, a vast submarine mountain range in the Indian Ocean; this also forms a terrestrial ecoregion, together with the Chagos Archipelago and Lakshadweep. With an average ground-level elevation of 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) above sea level, it is the world’s lowest-lying country, with even its highest natural point being one of the lowest in the world, at 5.1 metres (17 ft).In the 12th century Islam reached the Maldivian Archipelago, which was consolidated as a sultanate, developing strong commercial and cultural ties with Asia and Africa. From the mid-16th-century the region came under the increasing influence of European colonial powers, with Maldives becoming a British protectorate in 1887. Independence from the United Kingdom came in 1965, and a presidential republic was established in 1968 with an elected People’s Majlis. The ensuing decades have seen political instability, efforts at democratic reform, and environmental challenges posed by climate change.Maldives became a founding member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). It is also a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, and the Non-Aligned Movement. The World Bank classifies the Maldives as having an upper-middle income economy. Fishing has historically been the dominant economic activity, and remains the largest sector by far, followed by the rapidly growing tourism industry. Maldives rate “high” on the Human Development Index, with per-capita income significantly higher than other SAARC nations. Maldives was a member of the Commonwealth from July 1982 until withdrawing from the organisation in October 2016 in protest at allegations by the other nations of its human rights abuses and failing democracy. The Maldives rejoined the Commonwealth on 1 February 2020 after showing evidence of functioning democratic processes and popular support.
Grenada is a sovereign country in the West Indies in the Caribbean Sea at the southern end of the Grenadines island chain. Grenada consists of the island of Grenada itself, two smaller islands, Carriacou and Petite Martinique, and several small islands which lie to the north of the main island and are a part of the Grenadines. It is located northwest of Trinidad and Tobago, northeast of Venezuela and southwest of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Its size is 348.5 square kilometres (134.6 sq mi), and it had an estimated population of 112,523 in July 2020. Its capital is St. George’s. Grenada is also known as the “Island of Spice” due to its production of nutmeg and mace crops.
Before the arrival of Europeans in the Americas, Grenada was inhabited by the indigenous Arawaks and later by the Island Caribs. Christopher Columbus sighted Grenada in 1498 during his third voyage to the Americas. Although it was deemed the property of the King of Spain, there are no records to suggest the Spanish ever landed or settled on the island. Following several unsuccessful attempts by Europeans to colonise the island due to resistance from the Island Caribs, French settlement and colonisation began in 1650 and continued for the next century. On 10 February 1763, Grenada was ceded to the British under the Treaty of Paris. British rule continued until 1974 (except for a period of French rule between 1779 and 1783). From 1958 to 1962 Grenada was part of the Federation of the West Indies, a short-lived federation of British West Indian colonies. On 3 March 1967, it was granted full autonomy over its internal affairs as an associated state.
Independence was granted on 7 February 1974 under the leadership of Eric Gairy, who became the first Prime Minister of Grenada. The new country became a member of the Commonwealth, with Queen Elizabeth as Head of State. In March 1979, the Marxist–Leninist New Jewel Movement overthrew Gairy’s government in a popular bloodless coup d’état and established the People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG), headed by Maurice Bishop as Prime Minister. Bishop was later executed by military hardliners, prompting a U.S.-led invasion in October 1983. Since then democratic governance has been restored and the island has remained politically stable.Grenada is known for its beaches and resorts. The best time to travel there is between January and April.
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Kitts and Nevis, officially known as the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis, is an island country in the West Indies. Located in the Leeward Islands chain of the Lesser Antilles, it is the smallest sovereign state in the Western Hemisphere, in both area and population. The country is a Commonwealth realm, with Elizabeth II as Queen and head of state. It is the only federation in the Caribbean.
The capital city is Basseterre, located on the larger island of Saint Kitts. Basseterre is also the main port for both passenger entry (via cruise ships) and cargo. The smaller island of Nevis lies approximately 3 km (2 mi) to the southeast of Saint Kitts, across a shallow channel called The Narrows.The British dependency of Anguilla was historically also a part of this union, which was then known collectively as Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla. However, Anguilla chose to secede from the union and remains a British overseas territory. To the north-northwest lie the islands of Sint Eustatius, Saba, Saint Barthélemy, Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten and Anguilla. To the east and northeast are Antigua and Barbuda, and to the southeast is the small uninhabited island of Redonda (part of Antigua and Barbuda) and the island of Montserrat.
Saint Kitts and Nevis were among the first islands in the Caribbean to be colonized by Europeans. Saint Kitts was home to the first British and French colonies in the Caribbean, and thus has also been titled “The Mother Colony of the West Indies”. It is also the most recent British territory in the Caribbean to become independent, gaining independence in 1983.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
It is a country in the Caribbean region in the continent of North America.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, also often known simply as Saint Vincent, is an island country in the Caribbean. It is located in the southeast Windward Islands of the Lesser Antilles, which lie in the West Indies at the southern end of the eastern border of the Caribbean Sea where the latter meets the Atlantic Ocean.
Its 369 km2 (142 sq mi) territory consists of the main island of Saint Vincent and the northern two-thirds of the Grenadines, a chain of 32 smaller islands. Some of the Grenadines are inhabited — Bequia, Mustique, Union Island, Canouan, Petit Saint Vincent, Palm Island, Mayreau, Young Island — while others are not: Tobago Cays, Baliceaux, Battowia, Quatre, Petite Mustique, Savan and Petit Nevis. Most of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines lies within the Hurricane Alley.
Barbados is an island country in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies, in the Caribbean region of North America. It is 34 kilometres (21 miles) in length and up to 23 km (14 mi) in width, covering an area of 432 km2 (167 sq mi). It is in the western area of the North Atlantic and 100 km (62 mi) east of the Windward Islands and the Caribbean Sea; therein, Barbados is the most easterly of the Caribbean Islands. Barbados is east of the Windwards, part of the Lesser Antilles, roughly at 13°N of the equator. It is about 168 km (104 mi) east of both the countries of Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and 180 km (110 mi) south-east of Martinique and 400 km (250 mi) north-east of Trinidad and Tobago. Barbados is outside the principal Atlantic hurricane belt. Its capital and largest city is Bridgetown.
Inhabited by Kalinago people since the 13th century, and prior to that by other Amerindians, Barbados was visited by Spanish navigators in the late 15th century and claimed for the Spanish Crown. It first appeared on a Spanish map in 1511. The Portuguese Empire claimed the island between 1532 and 1536, but later abandoned it in 1620 with their only remnants being an introduction of wild boars for a good supply of meat whenever the island was visited. An English ship, the Olive Blossom, arrived in Barbados on 14 May 1625; its men took possession of it in the name of King James I. In 1627, the first permanent settlers arrived from England, and it became an English and later British colony. As a wealthy sugar colony, it became an English centre of the African slave trade until that trade was outlawed by the Slave Trade Act 1807, with final emancipation of slaves in Barbados occurring over a period of years following the Slavery Abolition Act 1833.
On 30 November 1966, Barbados became an independent state and Commonwealth realm with Elizabeth II as its queen, though the country is set to remove her as its head of state and become a republic by 30 November 2021. It has a population of 287,010 people, predominantly of African descent. Despite being classified as an Atlantic island, Barbados is considered to be a part of the Caribbean, where it is ranked as a leading tourist destination. Of the tourists, 40% come from the UK, with the US and Canada making up the next large groups of visitors to the island.
Seychelles, officially the Republic of Seychelles, is an archipelagic island country in the Indian Ocean at the eastern edge of the Somali Sea. The country consists of 115 islands. Its capital and largest city, Victoria, lies 1,500 kilometres (932 mi) east of mainland Africa. Other nearby island countries and territories include the Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius, and the French overseas regions of Mayotte and Réunion to the south; as well as Maldives and the Chagos Archipelago (administered by the United Kingdom as the British Indian Ocean Territory) to the east. With a population of roughly 98,462 , it has the smallest population of any sovereign African country.Seychelles was uninhabited prior to being encountered by Europeans in the 16th century. It faced competing French and British interests until coming under full British control in the late 18th century. Since proclaiming independence from the United Kingdom in 1976, Seychelles has developed from a largely agricultural society to a market-based diversified economy, characterized by rapidly rising service, public sector, and tourism activities. From 1976 until 2015, nominal GDP grew nearly sevenfold, and purchasing power parity increased nearly sixteenfold. Since the late 2010s, the government has taken steps to encourage foreign investment.
Today, Seychelles boasts the highest nominal per capita GDP of any African nation. It is the first African country with an HDI score exceeding 0.800, and therefore the only country in the continent with a very high Human Development Index. It is one of only two countries in Africa classified as a high-income economy by the World Bank, the other being Mauritius. Despite its relative prosperity, poverty remains widespread as the country has one of the highest levels of economic inequality in the world and markedly unequal wealth distribution, with the upper and ruling class commanding a vast proportion of the country’s wealth.Seychellois culture and society is an eclectic mix of French, British, and African influences, with more recent infusions of Chinese and Indian elements. The country is a member of the United Nations, the African Union, the Southern African Development Community, and the Commonwealth of Nations.
Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda is a sovereign island country in the West Indies in the Americas, lying between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. It consists of two major islands, Antigua and Barbuda separated by 63km (39 miles), and smaller islands (including Great Bird, Green, Guiana, Long, Maiden, Prickly Pear, York Islands and further south, the island of Redonda). The permanent population number is about 95,900 (2018 est.), with 97% being resident on Antigua. The capital and largest port and city is St. John’s on Antigua, with Codrington being the largest town on Barbuda. Lying near each other, Antigua and Barbuda are in the middle of the Leeward Islands, part of the Lesser Antilles, roughly at 17°N of the equator.
The island of Antigua was explored by Christopher Columbus in 1493 and named for the Church of Santa María La Antigua. Antigua was colonized by Britain in 1632; Barbuda island was first colonised in 1678. Antigua and Barbuda joined the West Indies Federation in 1958. With the breakup of the federation, it became one of the West Indies Associated States in 1967. Following self-governance in its internal affairs, independence was granted from United Kingdom on 1 November 1981. Antigua and Barbuda is a member of the Commonwealth and Elizabeth II is the country’s queen and head of state.The economy of Antigua and Barbuda is particularly dependent on tourism, which accounts for 80% of GDP. Like other island nations, Antigua and Barbuda are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, such as sea level rise, and increased intensity of extreme weather like hurricanes, which have direct impacts on the island through coastal erosion, water scarcity, and other challenges.