The Caribbean is a marine area that lies between North and South America’s continents. The northern shore of the Caribbean is the continental United States. Its southern shore is shared with nations in South America and French Guiana, a French subsidiary.
The western coast of the Caribbean is made up of land that belongs to Mexico and Central American nations. The Atlantic Ocean sits to the east of the Caribbean.
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The Caribbean’s location
More than 7,000 islands, 13 sovereign countries, and 12 dependencies make up the Caribbean. The territory is around one million square miles in size. The Caribbean’s nations and dependencies are typically regarded to be a part of North America.
The Caribbean’s Island Groups
There are three different groupings of islands in the Caribbean. The first category is the Greater Antilles in the northern Caribbean, which includes the major islands such as Cuba, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, and Hispaniola, which is shared by the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
The Lesser Antilles, situated in the southern Caribbean, is the second island cluster. The northern Leeward Islands and the southern Windward Islands make up this collection of islands. The Lucayan Archipelago, which includes the Bahamas as an independent republic and the Turks and Caicos Islands as a British colony, is the third group of islands.
The Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands are officially in the Atlantic Ocean, not the Caribbean Sea, but they are socially and politically connected to the Caribbean and therefore considered part of the area.
The Caribbean’s Demographics
The Caribbean has a population of roughly 44 million people. Haiti, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic are the most populated nations in the area, with populations of 10 million or more.
The French Dependency of St. Bart’s and the British Dependency of Montserrat, both with populations of fewer than 10,000 people, is the least populated.
Geographical Connections Between the Caribbean and North America
The Caribbean islands are often regarded to be part of North America. The great majority of Caribbean islands are located on the continental shelf of North America. However, there are certain exceptions.
The islands of Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, and Trinidad and Tobago are located on the South American continental shelf. Surprisingly, certain islands under the jurisdiction of South American nations are found on the continental shelf of North America. Venezuela’s Isla Aves and Columbia’s San Andreas and Providencia are among them.
Even though they are physically different from the Caribbean, nations bordering the Caribbean Sea, such as those in Central America and the northern regions of South America with Caribbean coasts, are often considered part of the Caribbean community.
Political and economic ties between the Caribbean and North America
The Caribbean is recognized to be part of North America not just geographically, but also politically and economically. For example, the United States, which is undeniably a part of North America, has sovereignty over certain Caribbean territories, including Puerto Rico and the several Virgin Islands.
Furthermore, the United States is one of the Caribbean’s most important commercial partners for both imports and exports. The only exception to this trend is Cuba, which for political reasons does not participate in regular trade with the United States.