One of the British Leeward Islands, Nevis is is part of the Federation of St Kitts and Nevis, an independent state on the eastern edge of the Caribbean Sea. Landing at Charlestown, tour the island which is dotted with old sugar plantations, some of them now turned into charming inns, many with interesting histories. It was at Morning Star Plantation that young Captain Horatio Nelson married Frances Nisbet. Alexander Hamilton was born at a Georgian style mansion in Charlestown, and a resident ghost is said to haunt the 18th century Eden Brown Estate.
Called Oualie ("land of beautiful water") by the Carib, Nevis is nearly circular in shape and surrounded by coral reefs and beaches of white coral sand. Its highest point, Nevis Peak (985 m/3,232 ft) in the centre of the island, is usually shrouded in mist. Nevis, along with St. Kitts, comprises one of the smallest countries in the world. The islands were discovered by Columbus in 1493, and because he thought the mountains were covered with snow, (they were actually covered by clouds) he named the smaller island Nevis after the Spanish word for "snow." It was settled by the British in 1628 and with St Kitts it was the first British colony in the West Indies.
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