Commonly known as the island of Spice, Grenada is a beautiful country that encompasses picturesque landscapes, breathtaking flora and fauna and a wide variety of exciting activities suitable for all ages. With sister islands Carriacou and Petite Martinique neighboring Grenada and definitely worth a visit, the aesthetic quotient of the island gets an additional push.
Traveling to Grenada is convenient and the warmth of its people ensures you will enjoy a comfortable stay. The architecture and culture of the country reflect a smooth blend of an old and new tradition. An example of this is through the music one hears. While calypso is the native style of music, one will experience the sounds of a fusion of parang, reggae, dancehall and pop resonating from cars and buses, shop fronts and even through the windows of people's homes, especially during festival seasons. Similarly, while you will find many newly constructed structures – especially in the parish of St George – many parts of the country still retain the old-fashioned Caribbean charm, thereby adding to the authenticity of the place.
Although an island known for its stunning beaches and laid-back vibes, Grenada offers an array of attractions to visitors and locals alike; hiking trails, rain forests, hot springs, waterfalls, and some of the most beautiful underwater experiences in the world. The people are proud of their heritage and have many historic sites and stories to share as well. The tropical location of the island makes it a popular tourist destination for all.
Standard (British) English is the official language of Grenada and is widely spoken. However, majority of the population is well versed with two creole languages, one based on English and the other on French; Both languages have African and Indian influences, reflecting Grenada's rich cultural heritage.
Grenada offers a pleasant climate throughout the year with the average temperature ranging from 240 C to 300 C (750 F to 850 F). Even though the island is pleasantly warm year-round, tourists can experience a change in season at different altitudes on the island. The temperature is at its lowest between November and February, while the country experiences dry season between January and May. It generally rains from June to December. Located just below the hurricane belt, the island is safely protected from most of the major hurricanes in the region, with most weather extremes not lasting more than a few days.
Grenada is a paradise for all food lovers. From gourmet dining to rustic local fare, avid foodies can satisfy their taste buds with a variety of dishes. Throughout the island, spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, bay leaf, clove and ginger grow in abundance. Fruits and vegetables surround you and many homes have their own coconut, mango and breadfruit trees with the sweetest harvests throughout the year.
The national dish of Grenada is oil-down, though there are many other local delicacies to savor; Fried Bake and Saltfish, Lambie Souse, and Callaloo Soup to name a few, along with a variety of desserts featuring the island’s famous nutmeg, and cocoa flavors.
Another commonly enjoyed meal is roti, which is a type of wrap filled with curried meat or vegetables.
Grenada has held top rankings in the world for its fish, seafood, superior cocoa, nutmeg and spices. The tri-island state provides for a unique culinary experience for food aficionados from across the globe to enjoy a variety of interpretations that will all leave you wanting more.
The currency of Grenada is the Eastern Caribbean dollar (EC$, ECD or XCD) which is common to the small group of Eastern Caribbean States. To protect it from the vagaries of trade, the government entered into an agreement with the US government to peg a fixed conversion rate of 1 USD = 2.7 ECD.
Notes are in denominations of EC$100, 50, 20, 10 and 5, while coins are in denominations of EC$2 and EC$1, and 25, 10, 5, 2 and 1 cents. US Dollars are widely accepted as an alternative currency, and many also accept the British pound; The change returned would mostly be in ECD, though you can manage to get currency for currency return in banks and some hotels.
Tourists and travelers should note that while credit card acceptance is common, it is not universal. Cash is required for most taxis and public transport as well as local markets. If taking travelers’ cheques for payment, it is advisable to take them in US dollars rather than in sterling, as this will avoid additional exchange rate charges.
Grenada is one of the safest places in the Caribbean, so feel free to carry change in US or ECD to meet sundry expense.