Religion is central to Guyanese people's lives. Approximately one-half of the population is Christian and Anglicans are the largest denomination. People of African, Chinese, Native or European descent are likely to be Christians. The remaining 50% includes people of the Hindu and Islamic faiths. Their religions were not given recognition by the government until Independence in 1966. After Independence, important events in the Hindu and Islamic religious calendar were declared national holidays along with traditional holidays from the Christian calendar.

Some Guyanese are superstitious. Local folklore is a mixture of African and East Indian as well as Native legends. One character of superstition is Old Hag, pronounced "ol' haig", a female vampire who sheds her skin and flies away in a ball of fire to suck someone's blood. Women know they are victims of Old Hag, which East Indians call a sukhanti, if they wake up in the morning feeling weak and find a blue spot on their body. A trap can be set to destroy a woman suspected of being a sukhanti by watching to see when she sheds her skin and flies off in the ball of fire. When she does, someone rubs hot pepper inside her empty skin. Then, because of the heat of the pepper, she can not get back into her skin and she dies.

Did you know?

St. George's Anglican Cathedral in Georgetown is the largest wooden free-standing building in the world.