The Changing Face of Berbice

Most regions in Guyana have their own history, character and special features. The name Berbice immediately conjures images of Dutch architecture, agricultural plots and industrial estates.

The Berbice River Bridge 

The Berbice River Bridge

The Berbice County, commonly known as the Ancient County, is quickly transforming into a tourist location, where visitors can commute along the longest straight road in the Caribbean, and travel along its waterways where the national bird, Hoatzin, locally referred to as the Canje Pheasant can be seen. In addition, a visit to any of the four sugar estates, Blairmount, Rose Hall, Albion  or Skeldon, would reveal wooden edifices in their original design, reflecting previous symbols of wealth and prestige of the colonial planters.
Cuffy, a house slave, grew up on a plantation in Lilienburg, and subsequently lead the infamous Berbice Slave rebellion in February 1763.
The Berbice river bridge, linking the region with Demerara is described as a part of the South American highway network which will improve, significantly, the road system between several regions. In addition to a scheduled ferry service across the Corentyne River where daily visits can be made to our neighbouring country Surinam, a swim at the Number 63 beach is a must for every visitor.
Symbols of the various religions, reflective of our history, are seen in all the towns and villages; and for those who prefer to be otherwise engaged, particularly on a Sunday morning, a battle for supremacy among the Ruddy breasted seed eater or the Towa Towa and the fire red birds can be seen in the vicinity of Chapel Street in the New Amsterdam township. The winner then flies off with the title of the best whistler and shares his trainer earnings.

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Guyana Facts

Official Name
The Co-operative Republic of Guyana. Georgetown is the capital city.

National Symbols
Coat of ArmsNational Flag

 

Population

Approximately 751,223 (Census 2002) of which 90% live along the coastal strip and banks of the three major rivers. The ethnic composition of the population is as follows:

  • East Indian 43.5%
  • Black (African) 30.2%
  • Mixed 16.7%
  • Amerindian 9.1%
  • Other 0.5%

Location

North East of South America between 1o & 9o North Latitude and 57o & 61o West Longitude, bordering Venezuela to the West, Brazil to the South, Suriname to the East.

Language

The official language is English. Often spoken with a Caribbean Creole flavour. Guyana is also the only English speaking country in South America.

Government

Guyana became independent from Britain in 1966 and a “Cooperative Republic in 1970, when a non executive President replaced the Governor-General. A new constitution in 1980 gave the President wide executive powers. The Cabinet is headed by the President, and there is a 65-member National Assembly elected by proportional representation.

President: Bharat Jagdeo
Prime Minister: Samuel Hinds

Other information

Currency: Guyana Dollar
Time Zone: GMT – 04:00
Area: 214,970 km2 or 83,000 sq mi
Country Code: 592
We drive on the left side of the road.

More information about Guyana | World Cities: Georgetown

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