Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory features Paramaribo, the capital city of Suriname at the mouth of the Suriname River. The United Nations (UN) has designated part of the city center as a world heritage site.
“Composed of mainly wooden buildings, the plain and symmetrical architectural style illustrating the gradual fusion of Dutch and other European architectural and later North American influences, as well as elements from Creole culture, reflects the multi-cultural society of Suriname,” reports the UN.
According to ESA, the Dutch established a trading post at the mouth of the Suriname River in 1613, although Indigenous groups have lived in the region for thousands of years.
“England and France also had settlements along the river early in Paramaribo’s history, but the Dutch asserted full control of the area in 1667 during the Second Anglo-Dutch War. Until the mid-19th century, Dutch planters in the area relied on the labor of enslaved people to produce sugar, coffee, cacao, cotton, and other crops,” says ESA.
“In modern times, Paramaribo has grown to be a city of 240,000 people, half of Suriname’s population. The country’s main exports are bauxite, gold, oil, hardwood, and bananas.”
Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory