Mona Passage

Mona Passage (mōˈnä, –nə) [key], strait, c.80 mi (130 km) wide, between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Connecting the N Atlantic Ocean with the Caribbean Sea, it is a favored shipping lane, but its waters are treacherous for small craft. At the southern end, midway in the strait, is Mona Island, c.20 sq mi (50 sq km), part of Puerto Rico. It was visited by Columbus in 1493, and in 1508 Ponce de León stopped there. In 1511 the island was ceded to Columbus's younger brother Bartolomé, but it soon became a haven for pirates. Uninhabited, it is a nature reserve, with cliff walls as high as 200 ft (60 m) and caves. A lighthouse is on the north side.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Mona Passage from Fact Monster:

  • Aguadilla - Aguadilla Aguadilla , town (1990 pop. 59,335), NW Puerto Rico, a port on Mona Passage. It is a ...
  • Caribbean Sea - Caribbean Sea Caribbean Sea , tropical sea, c.970,000 sq mi (2,512,950 sq km), arm of the Atlantic ...
  • Mayagüez - Mayagüez Mayagüez , city (1990 pop. 100,371), W Puerto Rico, on Mona Passage. It is a ...
  • Puerto Rico: Land - Land Smallest and easternmost of the Greater Antilles, Puerto Rico is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean ...
  • Mona, island, Puerto Rico - Mona Mona, island, Puerto Rico: see under Mona Passage.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Latin American and Caribbean Physical Geography