Montserrat is a British Overseas Territory located in the Caribbean. The island is located in the Leeward Islands, part of the chain of islands known as the Lesser Antilles, in the West Indies and is nicknamed The Emerald Isle of the Caribbean, both for its resemblance to coastal Ireland and for the Irish ancestry of some of its inhabitants. Before its lower half became devastated by cataclysmic eruptions of the Soufrière Hills Volcano in 1995, Montserrat was a carefree little island paradise famous as the birthplace of the late “Alphonsus Cassell”, creator of the soca hit ‘Hot, Hot, Hot’, and as the home of Air Montserrat, the famous recording studio founded by Beatles producer Sir George Martin. Sting and Eric Clapton were among the stars who recorded here.
Life changed dramatically on July 18, 1995 when a series of ash falls, pyroclastic flows and mud flows buried the capital, Plymouth, and smaller settlements, farmland and forests. Around 11,000 residents were evacuated and resettled in the north or immigrated to Britain. Today, most tourists come for volcano-related day trips. Driving down the coast, you quickly get a feel for the island’s rich tropical life and take in jaw-dropping vistas of the destruction. But don’t miss out on Rendezvous Bay – this beautiful white sandy beach is a lovely (though facility-free) perfect for swimming, snorkeling and diving. Montserrat has many landmarks, monuments, natural beautiful landmarks, museums, galleries and don’t forget to enjoy dancing in the sand at Soca Cabana, a classic beach bar that serves delicious lunches and is always packed for Saturday night karaoke! There are hiking trails, beautiful beaches and unique sights only to be found on this ‘Emerald isle of the Caribbean”. Sounds like a plan to me!