The flag of the British Virgin Islands was adopted on 15 November 1960. It is a defaced Blue Ensign with the Union Flag in the canton, and defaced with the coat of arms of the British Virgin Islands. The coat of arms features Saint Ursula and the lamps of her virgin followers, which gives the islands their name.
The civil ensign is a red ensign with the coat of arms of the British Virgin Islands. The red ensign is to be flown on board vessels either registered in the British Virgin Islands or by vessels visiting the British Virgin Islands.
The Governor of the British Virgin Islands has a separate flag, a Union Flag defaced with the coat of arms. This design is similar to flags of the other Governors in British overseas territories.
The British Virgin Islands comprise 60+ islands and keys, with more than 43 of them being uninhabited islands. The islands fall into two types: the majority are steep volcanic islands (including the main islands, Tortola and Virgin Gorda), and a small number of relatively flat coral islands (such as Anegada and Sandy Spit). In fact, Anegada is referred to as "the drowned island" because its elevation is so low. Many people miss it altogether until they sail close to it. The highest point is Sage Mountain on Tortola.
With a tropical climate tempered by easterly trade winds, relatively low humidity, and little seasonal temperature variation, the weather in the BVI is rather enjoyable. In the low season, there are some hurricanes, although in recent years they have had little consequent damage beyond some flooding.
The economy is one of the most stable and prosperous in the Caribbean. The US dollar is the legal currency within the British Virgin Islands. The islands of the BVI are highly dependent on tourism, generating an estimated 45% of the national income, together with the offshore financial industry.