Mauritius celebrates Independence Day. It became a free nation in 1968, but it is still part of the British Commonwealth. About 2/3 the size of Rhode Island, this island country is located in the Indian Ocean east of Madagascar. The island had been colonized by various countries and often served as a way station for navies. About 1.3 million people live on the island, and sugar cane is the predominant crop. Port Louis is the capital.
Bahamas celebrate Independence Day. The islands became free of British rule in 1973, although it is still part of the British Commonwealth. Almost 700 islands make up the country, but the combined area is equal to the area of Connecticut. Over 300,000 people live there, and many of them earn livings from tourism. The country’s capital is Nassau.
Jamaica celebrates Independence Day. It became free from Great Britain in 1962, but Jamaica remains a part of the British Commonwealth. Located in the Caribbean Sea, Jamaica is about the size of Connecticut. This mountainous island has a tropical climate. Almost three million people live there, and tourism is an important industry. Kingston is the capital. Children could learn more at: Jamaica.
Papua New Guinea celebrates Independence Day. The country became independent in 1975, but it remains part of the British Commonwealth. It is composed of the larger island of New Guinea, the second biggest island in the world, and 600 smaller islands. About 6.4 million people live in Papua New Guinea, and Port Moresby is the capital.
Tuvalu celebrates Independence Day. In 1978 it became an independent country, but it is still part of the British Commonwealth. The fourth smallest country in the world, Tuvalu has an area about the size of 0.1 the area of Washington, DC. Located about halfway between Hawaii and New Zealand, the country’s three islands and six atolls support about 11,000 people. Funafuti is the capital.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines celebrate Independence Day. Located in the Caribbean, the one large island of St. Vincent and the fifty smaller Grenadines islands gained their freedom from the United Kingdom in 1979. However, they are still part of the British Commonwealth. The total area of the country is about twice the size of Washington, DC. Banana production and tourism provide many of the local jobs. About 103,000 people live there, and Kingstown is the capital.
Tonga celebrates Independence Day. It became independent from the United Kingdom in 1970. A constitutional monarchy, Tonga still remains part of the British Commonwealth. The country, located in the South Pacific, is composed of 172 islands. Its total area is about four times the size of Washington, DC. Slightly over 100,000 people live on the islands. Its capital is Nuku’alofa. Captain James Cook explored the area in 1773. Today Tonga exports copra, bananas, and vanilla.
Barbados celebrates Independence Day. It became free from Great Britain in 1966; however, it has remained in the British Commonwealth. This easternmost island in the Caribbean is 166 square miles, about 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC. In the colonial days the economy depended on sugarcane. Today, however, tourism is a big source of revenue. Almost 300,000 people live in Barbados, and close to half the population lives in Bridgetown, the capital.
Saint Lucia celebrates Independence Day. Although it became an independent country in 1979, it is still part of the British Commonwealth. According to the CIA World Factbook, Saint Lucia is about 3.5 times the size of Washington, DC. The island, located in the Caribbean Sea, exports bananas and cocoa. About 160,000 inhabitants live on the island, and many of them depend on tourism for income. Castries is the capital.