A former Dutch colony in North Eastern coast of South America, dominated by verdant rainforest.
Suriname was formerly known as Dutch Guyana, gaining independence from the Netherlands in 1975. Although one of smallest countries in South America, Suriname has one of the most ethnically diverse populations, with a quarter of the population from India, the Maroons and Creoles with African descent and a smaller proportion of Javanese people from Indonesia. Dutch and English is spoken, but as you can imagine, each ethnic groups has its own languages.
Nearly everyone lives in the north of the country, along the Atlantic coast. The capital city is Paramaribo, a delightful city banks of the Suriname River. It’s known for ornate wooden Dutch colonial buildings. On the banks of the river, the 17th-century Fort Zeelandia houses the Surinaams Museum, with exhibits on the region's history. Nearby, the wood-and-stone Presidential Palace faces Independence Square and is backed by the Garden of Palms, a public park.
The Southern region of the country is relatively untouched Amazon rainforest, with the Central Suriname Nature Reserve covering 4m acres of virgin rainforest and now a UNESCO protected World Heritage site. Here, many species thrive including monkeys, jaguars, armadillos, sloths and tapirs.
Suriname has a tropical climate, with a mild rainy and a dry season from September to April and the heavy rainy season from May-August.
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