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French Guiana Information - Page 1
Geography
The Department of Guiana, known as French Guiana, is an overseas department of France in South America. It is bordered by Brazil, Suriname and the North Atlantic.

Cayenne is the capital. Other towns are Kourou, Matoury and Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni.

The terrain consists of low lying coastal plains, hills and mountains. Rivers include the Maroni and the Oyapock.

The climate is tropical: hot and humid.

Environment
A large percentage of French Guiana is covered with equatorial forest.

Parks and reserves in French Guiana include the Parc de la Guyane, Tresor, Marais de Kaw-Roura and Amana.

The Tresor Regional Nature Reserve covers areas of rainforest and wet savanna. Marais de Kaw is on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance.

The Amana National Nature Reserve is an important nesting site for leatherback turtles. The Reserve Animaliere Macourienne is the habitat of wildlife, such as jaguars, ocelots and tapirs.

Architecture
Colonial architecture can still be found in French Guiana. Examples of traditional styles with verandahs can be seen in the capital.

Cayenne's Franconie Museum, housed in a wooden Creole building, is listed as a cultural site. The Cathedral of Saint Sauveur, built in the first half of the nineteenth century, is also in the capital.

Population
The population of French Guiana was estimated at 221,500 in 2008.

Languages
French is the official language in French Guiana. Creole and indigenous languages are spoken.

Religion
Most of the people of French Guiana are Roman Catholics.

Food
The cuisine of French Guiana is influenced by French and Creole food. Asian cuisines are also available.

Rice is a staple food. Shellfish and fish are caught daily.

Stews are popular. Bouillon d'awara, a traditional dish, is made with fish, seafood, chicken and vegetables. The name of the dish is derived from the awara fruit, one of the ingredients.

Vegetables and tropical fruits include cassava, green beans, potatoes, taro, plantains, bananas, coconuts, mangoes, papayas, pineapples and rambutans.

Ti' Punch, consisting of rum and sugarcane syrup, is a favourite alcoholic drink.

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