Georgetown

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Georgetown is the largest city in and capital of Guyana.

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Cities

  • Metropolis over 100 hotels
  • Big city 50-100 hotels
  • Medium city 20-50 hotels
  • Small city 5-20 hotels
  • Village below 5 hotels

Points of Interest

  • Beach Beach
  • Business object Business object
  • Casino Casino
  • Civic property Civic property
  • Education Education
  • Entertainment Entertainment
  • Golf course Golf course
  • Green space Green space
  • Harbor Harbor
  • Historic site Historic site
  • Interesting place Interesting place
  • Medical Medical
  • Monument Monument
  • Museum Museum
  • Shopping Shopping
  • Skiing Skiing
  • Sports facility Sports facility
  • Theater Theater
  • Winery Winery

Points of Interest in Georgetown

If you have a day or two to spend in Georgetown, check out the markets listed below, take a walk down Regent Street, or through one of the markets and have a look at the Umana Yama Church (Amerindian cultural center) or some of the older colonial buildings around town, especially on Main Street.

The local seawall may be unimpressive, but it protects a city that lies 3 feet below high-tide level. The sea wall helps prevent flooding and drainage is aided by canals protected by sluices, built by the Dutch and later the British.

Georgetown has an abundance of tree-lined streets and avenues and contains many wooden colonial buildings and markets. Most of the main buildings are found around the western region of the town near Independence Square and Promenade Gardens. Interesting buildings include the Walter Roth Museum of Anthropology, the National Library, the Bank of Guyana, the National Museum of Guyana, State House and St. George's Anglican Cathedral.

  • National Museum of Guyana, On North Rd & Hinks St,  225-7191. M-F 9am-4:30pm, Sa 9-Noon. Two separate areas give a brief glance in the history of Guyana as well as the entire Guianas area. free.
  • Walter Roth Museum of Anthropology, Main St. (between Middle St & New Market St). A free museum with two floors showing the Amerindian heritage of Guyana. free.
  • Independence Square.
  • St George's Cathedral. One of the world's tallest wooden structures this cathedral is as attractive inside as out. Don't miss it.
  • Stabroek Market. Going back to 1881, the interesting design of this iron structure and clock tower certainly make it the most recognisable of buildings
  • Parliament Building. Dates back to 1829
  • Botanical Gardens. Open during daylight hours.. A large free garden where families and people hangout. The Guyana zoo is located within the grounds of the gardens and south of the zoo there are Victoria Lilies - Guyana's national flower, they are huge lilies, some of which are reported to hold up 50-100 pounds. free.
  • Guyana Zoo (inside the Botanical Gardens). A very small zoo with DIY cages for the animals. A lot of the cages are too small for the animal(s) they house. However, the zoo is a cheap way to spend an hour or two while in Georgetown. G$200/adults G$100/children.

Georgetown City Hall

Stabroek Market

National Library

Umana Yana

Parliament Building

University of Guyana

St. Georges Anglican Cathedral

Brickdam Cathedral

Georgetown Botanical Garden

Georgetown Lighthouse

Providence Stadium

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About Georgetown

Background

Georgetown is primarily the business and governmental seat of the country but its fascinating wooden colonial buildings also provide a different experience for tourists. However, most tourists visit Georgetown as a launching point to the rainforests of the interior.

Activities

  • Movie star Pauly Shore has a party mansion called the Class Act after his 1992 movie of the same name. The mansion is situated on the outskirts of town in a former mangrove that was drained in order to build the property. During January and February when Pauly is in residence, there are many "invite only" parties to attend with B-list semi-celebrities like Matt Dillon, Carrot Top and Seth Green. However, there are also some open parties for the locals to attend if you can get a ticket. These tickets are the hottest property in town, even more sought after than one-day-international cricket tickets.
  • Victoria. This was the first village bought by slaves. Come and visit and check out and sample local cuisine. Its a place that you will never forget. Be sure to check out Holy Communion Lutheran Church, the first Christian church in the country.
  • Demerara Rum Distillery (15min minibus ride). Tours are offered. G$30.

Food

Budget

  • Demico House- pastries, cakes etc.
  • JR Burgers (A Unique Guyanese Experience), Sandy Babb Street, Kitty,  226-6614. 9 AM - 11 PM. Flame-grilled beef burgers (complete with pineapple slices), rotisserie chicken, Jamaican patties, spicy wings, JR Fries, ice coffees, milk shakes, smoothies, donuts in the morning. Other locations at City Mall (Camp & Regent Streets) and Robb Street.
  • KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken) - There are several branches located in the Georgetown Area.
  • Popeyes and Pizza Hut, Vlissingen Road.
  • Salt and Pepper - good 'Creole' food.
  • Stabroek Market cookshops. The best for local foods, day time only.

Mid-range

  • Barrow Restaurant and Lounge, Linden (Mackenzie). Upscale Restaurant- very nice cocktails and local food
  • Brazilian restaurant, Alexander Street. This is a Churrascaria that offers good food and service and excellent caipirinhas.
  • New Thriving, Camp St (and other branches). Chinese restaurant. Also has a Buffet Menu.
  • Oasis Cafe, 125 Carmichael Street. And in Cheddi Jagan airport departure lounge. A nice range of cakes and pastries, together with coffee, capuccino and the rest. Free wireless.
  • Shanta's Restaurant, Camp & New Market street. Good local food such as curries for vegetarian and non-vegetarian, as well as roti, dhalpuri and other Indian food.
  • Sunflower, Cummings St. Wonderful Brazilian food.
  • Peppers, Regent Street. Good Brazillain food - though they weigh their portions!
  • Starbuds. Albert Street. A Good range of pasta, salads, sandwiches etc.
  • Windjammers. Kitty. Food reputed to be good, but always reluctant to give price info over phone!
  • Celina's On seawall, wonderful scenery and view. Food not always predictable in terms of availability and lighting at night so bad that you cannot see what you are eating, although it is usually good.
  • Coal Pot Carmichael Street. An established tradition of good Guyanese food.

Splurge

  • El Dorado, Le Meridien Pegasus.
  • Tic Tac, Middle Street. Excellent Brazillian Restaurant
  • Dutch Bottle. South Road. Lovely colonial ambiance. Good Creole and Continental food - vegetarian and omnivore options. Try the callaloo soup.
  • Bottle Restaurant, Cara Lodge Hotel in Quamina Street. Excellent food.

Drinks

The most popular national drink is Caribbean-style dark rum. The two national favorites are El Dorado and X-tra Mature which both offer 5, 10, 12 and 25 year varieties. El Dorado also offers a 15 year old variety which has won the "Best Rum in the World" award since 1999. Mix the cheaper ones with Coke or coconut water if you please. All are quality enough to drink neat or by themselves with the 25 year-olds comparing with high-quality scotch.

Banks is the national beer. It comes in a lager and a stout (Milk Stout). Also available are the lighter Carib (Trinidad and Tobago) and darker Mackisson's. Guinness is brewed locally under license and is a bit sweeter than its Irish counterpart, but just as good. Polar (Venezuelan) and Skol (Brazilian) can be found randomly throughout the country. You can also find Heineken and Corona at posher bars in Georgetown.

Non-alcohol: Malta is a popular sweet soda that is worth a try. Drink only bottled water.

There are small rum shops and bars throughout the city, those of note are:

  • Buddy's NightClub, Sheriff Street. The nightclub downstairs offers popular Caribbean Music (Dancehall, Soca, Reggae, Dub, etc.) with a dance floor open late into the night. The upstairs pool hall is a good place to start the evening, sit on the front porch to checkout the incoming clientèle.
  • Latino Club,Hatfield St. Despite the name, the club offers more Caribbean-style Music (Dancehall, Soca, Reggae, Dub, etc.) than Latin. A nice little patio outside serves good drinks and has ceiling fans to take cool-down breaks from the hot dance floor inside. Take cabs to and from this location at night as the surrounding areas can be a little sketchy.
  • Windies Bar. A nice little "sports" themed bar that pays homage to Guyana's national sport - Cricket.
  • Palm Court. Nice outside dancing and sometimes features live Brazilian Music.
  • Le Grande Penthouse. located in central Georgetown,this bar and lounge is a popular spot for both locals and tourists,and the bar's vibe is still laid back, just like it was almost 40 years ago.
  • Jerries. A 24 Hour drinking spot that plays a mixture of music (dancehall, soca, reggae) from nightfall until morning, and then begins serving breakfast. A nice little bar with a large outside seating area that is busy most nights of the week. Regular DJ's also play music but fairly centrally located as well in the Lamaha Newmarket block.
  • Local Rum Shops, Anywhere. 6am. Located anywhere that you would not find a bar or club. its mostly found in rural areas. you can chill out with a beer or the best in local rum; white rum, brown rum, El Dorado five year up to 25 years old sealed and preserved for your taste buds to enjoy. 100.

Shopping

  • Rum. Guyana is famous for its rum (see Drink). El Dorado has a good store in Departures at the airport but bear in mind that you cannot take a connecting flight carrying liquids unless they are in your suitcase. There are several places in town where you can buy the best brands.
  • The best place for buying souvenirs is The Hibiscus Plaza located outside the General Post office.
  • Buy wood carvings from the artists outside the Hotel Tower.
  • Stabroek Market. A major market in downtown. Be sure to keep an eye on your wallet.

The City Mall on Regent Street is the most modern of its kind in Georgetown and many tourist stores are located here. The central downtown shopping area is bounded by Hadfield Street on the South of the city, Water Street to the West, Albert Street to the East and Middle Street to the North. Most of the city's stores, supermarkets, boutiques and restaurants can be found within this zone. Every item a person could want can be purchased in the many stores in Guyana.

There are several well known places where you can get quality handcrafted Gold pieces, some of them being Royal Jewel House on Regent Street, TOPAZ Jewellers on Crown and Oronoque Streets in Queenstown; Gaskin & Jackson jewellers on Camp Sreet; Kings Jewelry World on Quamina Street with a branch on Middle Street; and Fine Jewelry by Niko's", located on Church Street.

Ask around too about designs by local and internationally acclaimed fashion designers, Michelle Cole, Pat Coates, and Roger Gary.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Georgetown City, Guyana is very high. For example approximate prices (as of Jan 2010) of Gasoline (Petrol) is US$5 per Liter, electricity price is US$0.33/unit, A domestic gas cylinder is slightly over US$20, Rent for average family accomodation may exceed 750 US$ per month in central (safe) locations and personal income tax, which is 33.33% (one third) of total taxable income makes the living further difficult. Employee's Salary is normally paid in Guyanese Dollars (1 USD = 205 Guyanese Dollars approx) and the income tax is deducted at source by employer.

This article is based on Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike 3.0 Licensed text from the article Georgetown (Guyana) on Wikivoyage.

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