About Isle of Man
Isle of Man (IOM) has a population of 84,497 (2011), and the capital is Douglas. Douglas is the main town, but smaller towns include Port Erin, Ramsey, Port St. Mary, Onchan, Peel and Castle Town. Isle of Man is not one of the countries forming the United Kingdom, but is a Crown dependent territory. The Queen of England is currently the head of state and is represented by the Lieutenant Governor. Isle of Man has established a special relationship with the EU according to the Protocol 3 to the Treaty of Accession (UK).
Isle of Man has a Parliament which is at least one thousand years old, making the legislature of the Isle of Man the oldest in the world. Isle of Man, despite being a dependency, takes care of administration domestically in terms of fiscal and social policies and laws. By convention, the government of the United Kingdom takes care of defense and external relations.
The legislature of Isle of Man is divided into the House of Keys and the Legislative Council. Party politics does not play a major role in the composition of the legislature, hence most members are independents. The House of Keys of Isle of Man comprises 24 members who serve a five year term and are elected by popular vote. Eight of these members sit on the Legislative Council of Isle of Man and three are ex-officio members.
Government in Isle of Man is based on a ministerial system, with the head of government being the Chief Minister. Government ministers are chosen by the Chief Minister and together make up the Manx Cabinet of Isle of Man.
The total area of Isle of Man is 13 miles wide and 33 miles long, north to south. Isle of Man is centrally located in the Irish Sea and as one of the British Isles. Isle of Man is famous for its diverse scenery and hills which are found throughout the Island. The farthermost northern parts of Isle of Man are generally flat and consist of accumulated deposits of glacial matter. In Isle of Man, there are beaches lining the coasts of the northern plain, which is generally considered to be very fertile and as a result is heavily cultivated.
Isle of Man has a temperate climate, and is generally unknown to have extreme weather, which is attributed to the impact of the Irish Sea. The sunniest months are May, June and July, while February is the coldest. Snowfall occurs but is uncommon in Isle of Man. Isle of Man is known to experience occasional sea fog along the south and eastern shores.