Info & Resources

Bermuda

Written by Staff Writer

Country Overview:
Bermuda was first settled in 1609 by shipwrecked English colonists headed for Virginia. Tourism to the island to escape North American winters first developed in Victorian times. Tourism continues to be important to the island’s economy, although international business has overtaken it in recent years. Bermuda has developed into a highly successful offshore financial center. Although a referendum on independence from the UK was soundly defeated in 1995, the present government has reopened debate on the issue.

Location:
North America, group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, east of South Carolina (US)

Geographic coordinates:
32 20 N, 64 45 W

Area:
Total: 53.3 sq km, land: 53.3 sq km, water: 0 sq km

Area – Comparative:
About one-third the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:
0 km

Coastline:
103 km

Climate:
Subtropical; mild, humid; gales, strong winds common in winter

Terrain:
Low hills separated by fertile depressions

Elevation extremes:
Lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

Natural Resources:
Highest point: Town Hill 76 m

Population:
66,536 (July 2008 est.)

Nationality:
Noun: Bermudian(s)

Nationality:
Adjective: Bermudian

Ethnic groups:
Black 54.8%, white 34.1%, mixed 6.4%, other races 4.3%, unspecified 0.4% (2000 census)

Religions:
Anglican 23%, Roman Catholic 15%, African Methodist Episcopal 11%, other Protestant 18%, other 12%, unaffiliated 6%, unspecified 1%, none 14% (2000 census)

Languages:
English (official), Portuguese

Country Name:
Bermuda

Government Type:
Parliamentary; self-governing territory

Capital Name:
Hamilton

Independence:
None (overseas territory of the UK)

National Holiday:
Bermuda Day, 24 May

Constitution:
8 June 1968; amended 1989 and 2003

Legal System:
English law

Executive Branch:
Chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor Sir Richard GOZNEY (since 12 December 2007)

Head of Government:
Premier Ewart BROWN (since 30 October 2006); Deputy Premier Paula COX

Cabinet:
Cabinet nominated by the premier, appointed by the governor

Elections:
The monarch is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed premier by the governor

About the author

Staff Writer