Learning About Sint Eustatius/Stacia
Sint Eustatius is a small, charming Caribbean island known to the locals as Statia. It is a special municipality of the Netherlands located in the northern Leeward Islands of the West Indies. The island is a stunning showcase of the old-world Caribbean, with peaceful scenery and laid-back vibes.
With an area of just over 8 square miles, Sint Eustatius is home to a dormant volcano, incredible diving opportunities, a lush rainforest, and historical sites.
History of Sint Eustatius/Stacia
Like much of the Caribbean and surrounding areas, Sint Eustatius was first discovered in 1493 by Christopher Columbus. Many European empires claimed the island for the next 150 years, finally formally settled by the Dutch in 1636.
At the end of the 18th century, Sint Eustatius became an important free port. It was a massive transshipment point in the Caribbean and earned the nickname “Golden Rock.”
The port’s status led to the island becoming a center for contraband imported and sold to just about anyone. Furthermore, it became a critical factor in the American War of Independence. The British disagreed with Sint Eustatius’s involvement with the American forces and launched an attack in 1781. The British took control of the island only to have allies of the Dutch, the French, regain the island in 1784.
However, once the Dutch and French were no longer allies by 1795, Sint Eustatius was unfortunately tossed between the French and British 22 times in just 20 years.
Finally, the Dutch claimed the island once more. In 2010, Sint Eustatius was formally designated as a “special municipality” of the Netherlands.
The island’s peak was during its domination of trade in the 18th century. Because of the continuous swapping between different European empires, it has struggled to regain its previous popularity and status.
Culture in Sint Eustatius/Stacia
Sint Eustatius has a culture infused with many different nationalities. It is heavily influenced by the Netherlands regarding its holidays, cuisine, and traditions. However, Caribbean practices and influence are evident, as well as American culture.
The Island’s first language is English, and its unofficial currency is the US dollar. Locals enjoy the popular sports of soccer, basketball, and softball.
Food in Sint Eustatius is inspired by a blend of European, Asian, and American dishes. A typical restaurant may have a fascinating mix of options, including burgers, pizza, and Chinese dishes. The Islanders also adore the usual Caribbean cuisine. The locals’ favorites include pickled conch shell meat, grilled fish, and lobster.
CITED: Wikipedia.org, Iexplore.com, Tripsavvy.com