In the 17th century, Placencia was settled by the English Puritans, originally from Nova Scotia and latterly from the island of Providencia. This settlement died out during the Central American wars of independence in the 1820s. The Placencia Peninsula was resettled in the late 1800s by several families. Placencia prospered and soon became a village, earning its livelihood from the sea. In the late 20th century it became a significant tourism destination, and is now referred to as Placencia Village, or simply Placencia.
The eastern side of the Peninsula is a long expanse of white sand beach and heavy mangrove in some areas; the western side is bounded by a long narrow north-south trending bay of the Caribbean Sea. A significant settlement on the peninsula is the Garifuna village of Seine Bight. Placencia is served by Placencia Airport.
The village is home to 458 permanent residents according to the 2000 census. The 2009 population estimate for Placencia Village is 750.