The Bay Islands have faced many major changes in recent years. Fishing has always been the mainstay of this former British Colony, but, tourism is seen as the future. Environmental changes and an increased population on the islands has caused a decrease in fish stocks and now sustenance fishing is in conflict with the Bay Islands’ number one tourist draw, diving.This has caused many problems between the fishermen and dive conservation and ecological groups, as areas that were once prime fishing grounds are now marine reserves.
Unique local cuisine includes white bread made with coconut oil, mango jam, iguana, lizard and crab. Interestingly, grated coconut, such as is used to decorate pastries in many countries is considered not fit for human consumption and fed to chickens and hogs.