Haiti has progressed after the 2010 earthquake that left most of the country in ruins. Most of its efforts are focused on tourism developments, which only improved its map to economic recovery. In fact, Haiti remains to be one of the alternative destinations for travel in the Caribbean for its blue waters and golden sand stretches. It can rival any island in the vicinity and features a plethora of activities for any type of island lover. Aside from its natural beauty, Haiti also has a rich culture and a prominent history. These two aspects are reflected in the country’s age- old sites, like the Citadelle la Ferriere.
Important and Interesting Facts about Haiti
- Haiti is a Caribbean country. It occupies the western, smaller portion of the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antillean archipelago, which it shares with the Dominican Republic.
- Haiti also occupies small satellite islands known for tourists, including; Île-à-Vache (Cow Island), which includes Port Morgan and Abaka Bay resorts.
- Haiti is the most mountainous nation in the Caribbean and the country’s highest point is Pic la Selle, at 2,680 metres (8,793 ft).
- Haiti is about the size of Maryland, It is two-thirds mountainous, with the rest of the country marked by great valleys, extensive plateaus, and small plains.
- Haiti is the third largest Caribbean nation (after Cuba and the Dominican Republic), with 27,750 square kilometres (10,714 sq mi) (roughly the size of the U.S. state of Hawaii or the country of Belgium).
- Petionville is one of the well-liked tourist attractions in Haiti. It is located in the country’s capital city and is quite a popular area in Port-au-Prince. Here you will find a lot of the modern amenities, which is a welcome treat after a day’s worth of touring a Caribbean heaven.
- Plaine du Cul de Sac is an accepted landmark in Haiti and is also a significant tourist appeal. It is located near the country’s border with the Dominican state. It’s a great place for those who want to go nature tripping since this huge stretch of lush land features rare species of nature including herons, flamingos, and ducks.
- Labadie Island could well be the biggest tourist magnetism in the whole of Haiti if not the most popular one. Labadie Island is best known for her indisputable scenic beauty. Visitors can take a cruise all approximately the island and enjoy the scenery. If you want to take a dip in the cool Caribbean waters then you can go beach jump or dive in one of the bays and leave the different reefs.
- Since one of the major magnetism of the country is the marvelous amount of water activities that tourists can try, one should not miss heading out to the Bay of Acul. It is located along the west coast and is quite superb. The place is of course shielded from storms and was chosen by Christopher Columbus himself as a shelter when he went on his first journey.
- History and culture buffs will enjoy a trip to Musee de Guahaba. It is a past museum among others in the country. It has a bit of a slant, however, for philantrophic help. Its collections portray how the variety of groups of people that the natives have group home with has prejudiced their culture and way of living.
- There are those who associate the Caribbean with rum for some reason. Maybe it is due to the fact that some of the best rums you can ever sample are made here. If you want to some of the best rums in the country then you should pay a appointment to the Barbancourt Rum Distillery. This brewery is a popular tourist magnetism that demonstrates to visitors how rum is made. Not only do you get a tour and a rum production demonstration, you will also be treating to a free sample after the tour.
Cool, Funny, and Fun Facts about Haiti
- Haiti has the second longest coastline in the Caribbean after Cuba; 1.100 miles. Over 70% of its beaches are still virgin.
- For 4 centuries, 15th -19th century, the world’s top 3 major super powers were in war with each other to have control of Haiti for its geographical position. Spain, France and England.
- Haiti was the second country in the world to issue a Declaration of Independence, only 33 years after the United States of America.
- Haiti is the first and only country in the history of mankind whose independence is the result of a successful slave rebellion.
- Haiti is the first Black Republic in the World.
- Haiti is the first country in the Western Hemisphere to abolished slavery; it would take the United States of America another 65 years to follow suit.
- Haiti is the only country in the world with Vodou as an official religion.
- Cattle/cow were first introduced in the Americas, in Ile-a-Vache (cow island), a small Island off Haiti’s southern coast by the Spanish.
- For 105 years (1697-1802) Haiti was responsible for 40% of the sugar consumed in the entire world; 123 millions pounds in 1788 alone.
- For much of the 17th and the 18th century, Haiti was responsible for 60% of the world’s coffee exports.
- For over a century, the livelihood of as many as 25 million inhabitants of France, directly depended on the colonial trade centered in Haiti.
- Upon Independence, Haiti became the first country in the American Continent to constitutionally grant all Its citizen full rights regardless of gender or race.
Historical and Cultural Facts about Haiti
- Originally inhabited by the indigenous Taíno people, the island was first discovered by Christopher Columbus during his first voyage across the Atlantic in 1492. When Columbus first landed in Haiti (western Hispaniola), he had thought he had found India or Asia.
- In 1697, Haiti became the French colony of Saint-Dominique, which became a leading sugarcane producer dependent on slaves.
- Haiti occupied the Dominican Republic for 22 years. From 1822 to 1844, holding the entire Island of Hispaniola under Its jurisdiction. Today’s Dominican Republic was called Spanish Haiti at the time.
- By winning the Vertieres Battle on November 18th 1803, Haiti forced France to sell to the US, it’s Louisiana territory, doubling the size of the United States of America. The Louisiana territory makes up today 15 US states and part of Canada. Namely, the US states of Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska; part of Minnesota, North Dakota and most of South Dakota, northeastern New Mexico, northern Texas, portions of Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, all Louisiana and, land that will eventually become part of the current Canadian Provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan.
- On December 5th 1803, the exact day of the 311 years anniversary of when the first European sat foot on Haiti’s soil, Jean Jacques Dessalines, the country father of Independence chased off the last remaining European off of Haiti.
- Rice and beans are considered the national dish and are the most commonly eaten meal in urban areas. Traditional rural staples are sweet potatoes, manioc, yams, corn, rice, pigeon peas, cowpeas, bread, and coffee. More recently, a wheat-soy blend from the United States has been incorporated into the diet.
- When entering a yard Haitians shout out onè (“honor”), and the host is expected to reply respè (“respect”). Visitors to a household never leave empty-handed or without drinking coffee, or at least not without an apology. Failure to announce a departure, is considered rude.
- Haiti is famous for its popular religion, known to its practitioners as “serving the lwa ” but referred to by the literature and the outside world as voodoo ( vodoun ). This religious complex is a syncretic mixture of African and Catholic beliefs, rituals, and religious specialists, and its practitioners ( sèvitè ) continue to be members of a Catholic parish. Long stereotyped by the outside world as “black magic,” vodoun is actually a religion whose specialists derive most of their income from healing the sick rather than from attacking targeted victims.
- People make pilgrimages to a series of holy sites. Those sites became popular in association with manifestations of particular saints and are marked by unusual geographic features such as the waterfall at Saut d’Eau, the most famous of sacred sites. Waterfalls and certain species of large trees are especially sacred because they are believed to be the homes of spirits and the conduits through which spirits enter the world of living humans.
- Associated with the beginning of the religious season of Lent, Carnival is the most popular and active festival, featuring secular music, parades, dancing in the streets, and abundant consumption of alcohol. Carnival is preceded by several days of rara bands, traditional ensembles featuring large groups of specially dressed people who dance to the music of vaccines (bamboo trumpets) and drums under the leadership of a director who blows a whistle and wields a whip.
- Haitian literature is written primarily in French. The elite has produced several writers of international renown, including Jean Price-Mars, Jacques Roumain, and Jacques-Stephen Alexis.
- Haitians have a predilection for decoration and bright colors. Wood boats called kantè , second hand U.S. school buses called kamion , and small enclosed pickup trucks called taptap are decorated with brightly colored mosaics and given personal names such as kris kapab (Christ Capable) and gras a dieu (Thank God). Haitian painting became popular in the 1940s when a school of “primitive” artists encouraged by the Episcopal Church began in Port-au-Prince.