A map of St Kitts and Nevis St Kitts and Nevis is an island nation, part of the Leeward Island group in the West Indies. Nevis lies about 1.6 kilometres (1 mile) to the southeast of St Kitts, which is where the capital Basseterre is situated and where most of the country’s people live. Both islands are volcanic and mountainous, covered by tropical rainforests; the land levels out towards the coasts. Both islands have a warm sunny climate. Like many eastern Caribbean islands, they lie in the Atlantic hurricane belt and are at risk from devastating tropical storms.
People from St Kitts are called Kittitians, and people from Nevis are called Nevisians. Most of the islanders are descended from Africans brought to work on sugar cane plantations in the 17th and 18th centuries. The country’s population is shrinking as each year more than a thousand people emigrate abroad, mainly to the USA.
Christopher Columbus named St Kitts after his patron saint, Christopher. “Kit” or “Kitt” was a popular nickname for Christopher in the 17th century
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