Essence Guesthouse Montserrat


General information

The island was discovered in 1493 by Christopher Colombus and was named Montserrat, because of its terrain similarity with a monastery in Spain. Montserrat has been under British control since the mid 17th century except for two brief periods of French influence.

The mango shaped island measures about 39 square miles or 100 square kilometres. It is approximately 12 miles (19 km) long and 7 miles (11 km) wide. The neighbouring islands of Redonda and Nevis can be seen from the West; Antigua from the North-East; and Guadeloupe from the South-East. 
Because of the Soufriere Hills volcano eruptions since 1995, the south of the island cannot be entered (exclusion zone). The last volcanic eruption took place on February 2010.

Temperatures are between 70°F and 90°F or 21°C and 33°C . The driest part of the year is generally between February and May. You’ll never get too hot thanks to the cooling tradewinds blowing from East to West. Unpolluted air is guaranteed.

The tap provides fresh spring water from the mountains and is perfectly safe to drink. 

Nowadays population: around 5000.

Montserrat takes part in the OECS (Organization of Eastern Caribbean States), uses the Eastern Caribbean Dollar as currency and is also a member of the Caricom. 
The XCD (most people use EC$) has a fixed rate against the USD: USD 1.00 = XCD 2.70 (EC$) .

More detailed information can be found on the following GoM (Governemnt of Montserrat) web sites:


What to expect:

What not to expect:


Things to do and see:


The two main events are the Calypso Festival at year end and St. Patricks mid March.

For more events see the Tourist Board web site.



The devastated capital Plymouth can be visited with registered tour guides.  This must be planned upfront with the tour guide of your choice. The town visit is possible since 2016 but it must be requested in advance (one to two days) for safety reasons.



Go on a trip that is hard to believe, sad but yet very interesting to experience the force of Mother Nature…
Cross over what used to be Belham Bridge. You are going to pass the villages evacuated since 1996. Drive through Cork Hill, Weekes and go towards Plymouth, pass the old sugar mill "museum" and further North of Sturge Park going to the former Springs Hotel.  This place is certainly worth a visit. See how the greenery survived the ash deposits. Also capture, from distance, the sad views of the ruins and completely covered parts of a once glorious capital…
Than, return towards Cork Hill and take a turn to see Fox’s Bay beach, one of the most beautiful on island.



Located on the main road in Olveston. Houses a nice gift shop. Tour the exibitions (when organised) and botanical gardens maintained by the Montserrat National Trust.
More about the fauna and flora of Montserrat:  

The museum in Little Bay also has a permanent exibition under the guidance of the National Trust



The observatory can be visited from Monday to Thursday.  The 30 minutes volcano film gives you a very good overview of what happend at the Soufriere Hiills. 

One can just drive up there anytime and get views of the volcano, Plymouth in far distance, and the panoramic Belham Valley.



Enjoy the scenic East coast ride. The road is not in the best condition but certainly do-able. At Jack Boy Hill you have a beautiful spot to watch the volcano on the east side. It overlooks the devastated old airport and eastern villages.



There are several beautiful hikes in the Central Hills forest and also in the Silver Hills North, we summarize some below



Montserrat’s beaches are remarkable: for swimming and sunbathing they provide the most calming and leisurely experience available, all without harassment and removed from the population of resorts and other commercial activity. Nature at its best! Below is a short description of the West coast beaches, from North to South up to the Exclusion Zone).

The East coast also has beaches but less suitable for bathing (Atlantic sea side).



Go sports fishing or take an unhurried boat ride to view the coastal areas of the island, while observing the Maritime Exclusion Zone, including devastated Plymouth and surrounding villages.

By catamaran to GUADELOUPE? For more information and reservations



To explore the underwater beauty of Montserrat check-out the two dive centers:



Caribbean helicopters based at Antigua provide tours of Montserrat. A very impressive tour…. 



Check the Trip Advisor visitor feedback pages on Montserrat attractions and restaurants


Let us know where we can help or assist. We want to make your stay in Montserrat as pleasurable as possible!