Caribbean Islands Forums

Post New Topic

Recent Activity

View all Caribbean Islands activity »
  1. 1 St. Maarten with older teens
  2. 2 Samana - Dominican Republic Help
  3. 3 Trip Report Trip Report Vieques and San Juan, Jan. 30 - Feb. 6 2016
  4. 4 Tortola Where to stay on a Budget?!
  5. 5 Restaurant selection in Grand Case
  6. 6 San Juan Restaurant Rec for 48
  7. 7 4 days in PR !! Need some help
  8. 8 Looking for destination suggestions
  9. 9 Favorite Anguilla Restaurants
  10. 10 Virgin Islands, Bahamas, or Puerto Rico
  11. 11 Trip Report In search of rum and revolution - Mr & Mrs Annhig go to Cuba.
  12. 12 Which of these hotels in Turks?
  13. 13 Help! Adventure vacation ideas
  14. 14 Suggestions for 75th Birthday for father
  15. 15 Special Trip for Mom - 83
  16. 16 Trip Report Manchebo Aruba Trip Report - August 2015
  17. 17 Any suggestions??
  18. 18 Gustavia stay
  19. 19 Dominican Republic vs Mexico
  20. 20 Trip Report My week in Guadeloupe
  21. 21 Ridiculous Airfare to Virgin Gorda
  22. 22 Which Island?
  23. 23 Planning ~$1000/person AI vacation from DC
  24. 24 Trip Report Limin' in Love City (Dec 6-11 St. John trip report w/photos)
  25. 25 Freeport, Bahamas
View next 25 » Back to the top

Trip Report Trip Report: Haiti

Jump to last reply

I finally got to go to Haiti a few weeks ago. I’ve loved the country from afar for some time now - long before the earthquake. I’ve read books about the place, studied its history, studied Voodoo (or Voudoun, depending on your spelling preference). I’d actually been to the cruise ship port of Labadee in the north (although I know that doesn’t really count) so, when the chance came to participate in a missionary trip there, I leapt at the chance.

The first thing that may surprise people who have not been there is that I didn’t feel in danger of physical violence while I was there. Yes, the people are poor - really, really poor - but they were very friendly. Having said that, I have to point out that I was part of a large group and I didn’t wander around Port-au-Prince alone at night. Whenever people are that hungry, there will be crime. I am told however, that most of the kidnappings are directed at wealthy Haitians.

If you’ve never been to Haiti before, prepare yourself to see poverty like you’ve probably never encountered before. Port-au-Prince is still a disaster after the earthquake - there is rubble and destroyed buildings everywhere. Many of the people in the group had done missionary work before but none of them had seen a place as devastated as this. We stayed on the Arcadian Coast and the feeling one gets traveling there is that you leave a slum to travel through another slum to travel through another slum.

The Arcadian Coast was lovely. We stayed at the Kaliko Beach Resort. This would be a modest resort on another island but it is extreme luxury on Haiti. The Arcadian Coast is where the other beach resorts are and it is the most tourist-friendly area. I still wouldn’t necessarily recommend Haiti for a purely recreational beach vacation. If you go, you are probably going to lend a hand. You can go there for a vacation, I guess, but it would be best not to go alone or to hire a full-time guide. After all, why go to Haiti if you are not going to experience its culture and just sit on a beach - you can do that anywhere.

The hotels in Port-au-Prince are like fortresses. I stayed at Le Plaza, which was serviceable but anonymous. I was told not to go out after dark but I hired a guide and went for a rum punch at the famous Hotel Oloffson - it is just as beautiful and charming as I imagined. My guide then took me for a ride around Petionville - a vibrant, wealthy city full of hotels, restaurants, and nightlife. (We saw the Karibe Hotel there, which looks truly exceptional.)

Haiti has so much to offer. I hope it becomes a place that people feel free to go to in the future.

7 Replies |Back to top

Sign in to comment.

Advertisement