Isla Margarita (Margarita Island) Venezuela is a mountainous tropical Caribbean island paradise located off the north shore of Venezuela.
Margarita is blessed with an average of over 330 days a year of sun, beautiful tropical beaches lined with palm trees like Playa el Agua or Playa Parguito and a temperature that is never too hot or too cold.
Margarita is well known for the quality of its beaches. Being an island, it is surrounded by beaches, and there is one for every taste. You can find a beach with or without waves, large or small, crowded or not, deep or not, cold or warm, windy or not, just select what you want, and you've got it.
Isla de Margarita was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1498, and was given the Greek name La Margarita, meaning 'pearl.' However, the name was later changed to Isla de Margarita, by Spanish monarchs, in honor of the princess from Austria who was set to marry Spanish Prince Don Juan. The local natives, Guaiqueries, welcomed Christopher Columbus and his crew, unaware that they would be exploited and made into slaves. Their extraction of pearls profited into a third of the Spanish Crown.
In 1561 the Spanish rebel, Lope de Aguirre, seized the island, and brutally opposed any threat of suppression against him. He was eventually captured and killed after crossing South America in an attempt to gain control of Panama. Throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, forts were built along the coast of Isla de Margarita, to counter the growing number of pirate invasions.
The island successfully gained independence from the Spanish in 1814, and became the first permanent free territory of Venezuela. In 1974 Margarita Island was declared a free port by the Venezuelan government, which led to a major growth in the economy and tourist industry. Today, the main source of income for the island is tourism; which comes as no surprise, considering the island is fabled for consistently sunny weather, and some of the most desirable beaches in the Caribbean.