"West Indies Tour Guide" Portsmouth by wakejunkie

Portsmouth Travel Guide: 2 reviews and 13 photos

Dominica- "The Nature Island of the Caribbean"

Dominica is a great place to visit if you're into beautiful waterfalls, rainforests, or kick-ass hiking with the greatest views. I'm actually living here now for med school so of all the islands, I know this one the best. Whenever I get the chance, I rent a car and see something new but I do have my favorites. Dominica isn't known for it's beaches but if you're an adventurer, you can definately find some gems like Aba Wavine Cyrique. Alot of locals don't even know about this place. Just imagine a waterfall misting down onto a completely secluded sand beach with nice swells. Situated on the Altantic side, this is the only place I've found to surf without getting slammed over rocks. There's just one catch, to get to the beach, you must first hike down a hundred some foot cliff. Don't worry, there's a rope and plenty of roots to hold onto. I've been down with ladies and new hikers alike and no LifeFlight was needed.

Island Life

The locals here are very friendly, English speaking, and helpful with directions. There aren't any names for the streets so as you'll have to ask many people along the way if you're looking for something specific. I don't recommend driving around here for several reasons. One is left-hand driving which is the easiest to get used to. The real problem is the sahpe of the roads down here. If you're lucky you might end up on a double wide road. In US standards this is a one lane driveway. Nevertheless, here where two cars can pass, they will, even with inches to spare at 80km a piece in opposite directions. And don't think you can just hit the ditch, each side of the road is a two feet deep gutter to manage the torrential rain. Just hire a guide, a taxi, or jump in a bus. The buses look like long minivans and are very cheap to ride. Problem is you gotta know when to tell them to stop and they only run down one road (the one that goes around the island). As soon as you tell the bus driver where you want to go, your bus just turned into a cab and the price went up. All the locals know the set rate for everything, so ask prices before you do something. It helps if you pay in ECs (Eastern Caribbean Dollars) because you could pass as a local and lower the price. As a guideline expect to pay $20 EC for every 15 minutes of transport in a taxi. By the way, $1 USD = $2.67 ECD.

Come as you are

Rainy season here is from June to about October. Keep your flight plans flexible in case of rain. There are only three airlines that come here: American Airlines, Caribbean Star/Sun, and LIAT (Luggage In Another Terminal). LIAT is the cheapest but not as reliable. Air Dominica is new but hasn't got off the ground as of yet. The airport here doesn't have lights so if it's storming, good luck landing cause they won't do it and you might end up in Antigua for the night (best case) or sleeping in the San Juan airport (worse case). As should be a rule everywhere you travel, keep an open mind to the oddities you experience and go with it. On my first flight here, our landing was postponed because of a loose dog on the runway.

  • Last visit to Portsmouth: Jun 2006
  • Intro Updated Jul 1, 2006
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