Barbados

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Coordinates: 13°0′N 59°32′W / 13°N 59.533°W / 13; -59.533

Barbados (pronounced /bɑrˈbeɪdɒs, bɑrˈbeɪdoʊs/ ( listen)) is an island nation of the Lesser Antilles, 34 kilometres (21 mi) in length and as much as 23 kilometres (14 mi) in width, amounting to 431 square kilometres (166 sq mi). It is situated in the western area of the North Atlantic Ocean and 100 kilometres (62 mi) east of the Windward Islands and the Caribbean Sea;[4] therein, it is about 168 kilometres (104 mi) east of the islands of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and 400 kilometres (250 mi) north-east of Trinidad and Tobago. Barbados is outside of the principal Atlantic hurricane belt.

Once a Portuguese territorial possession known as Os Barbados, in 1625 it became an English, and later a British, colony.[5] The island has an estimated population of 275,338 people,[6] with around 80,000 living in or around Bridgetown, the largest city and the country's capital.[7] In 1966, Barbados became an independent nation and Commonwealth realm, retaining Queen Elizabeth II as Head of State.[8] Barbados is one of the Caribbean's leading tourist destinations and is the most developed island in the region, with an HDI number of 0.788.

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