The Isle of Man is a self-governing Crown dependency, located in the Irish Sea at the geographical centre of the British Isles. On a clear day you can see all parts of the UK from the highest point of the Island, Snaefell. The head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, who holds the title of Lord of Mann. The Crown is represented by a Lieutenant Governor. The island is not part of the United Kingdom but foreign relations, defence, and ultimate good governance of the Isle of Man are the responsibility of the government of the United Kingdom.
On top of all that it’s also a very nice place to live! A very high quality of life can be enjoyed on the island which reminds many people of what the UK used to be like. Crime is relatively low and whilst the island has certainly “changed” over time it is still a very safe place to live. Outside of the capital serious crime is very rare indeed. Public services are very well supported on the Isle of Man and the health care and education systems in particular compare very well to the neighbouring islands.
The Isle of Man offers many employment opportunities although the primary source of income for the island is through offshore company formation and other financial services. The island does still retain a healthy retail sector and the low tax regime offers many opportunities for those with entrepreneurial spirit! Tourism has been on the decline for decades now with the Island appearing to concentrate on annual events rather than a tourist season. By far the most popular of these events is the Isle of Man TT races, an event for which the island is well known around the world. Sporting events like the Parish Walk and End To End race also attract visiting competitors.
The main criticism of the Island from residents seems to be a lack of things to do. For an island with a population of only 80,000 people I can’t see that problem although one or two wet weather facilities wouldn’t go amiss. One thing is for sure though and this is when the sun shines there are few better places to be!
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