Haiti is alive with art, music, culture and incredible scenery. The palm-fringed beaches and turquoise bays are some of the most beautiful in the Caribbean. Venture inland to discover cascading waterfalls, forest-covered mountains and jewel-toned natural swimming pools.
Things to do in Haiti
The bustling capital of Port-au-Prince is a gateway to Haiti. While most travellers make a beeline for the beach, it’s worth staying to visit attractions like Musée du Panthéon National. Exhibits are engaging and get you up to speed on Haitian history. Learn about Haitian Revolution leader Henri Christophe and see an enormous anchor used by Christopher Columbus.
Slip into holiday mode in Southern Haiti, where you’ll find gems like Jacmel. The town will charm you with its colonial-style architecture, colourful handicrafts and a breezy beach boardwalk. The bustling town of Les Cayes is a gateway to Île-à-Vache, where you’ll find some of the country’s best beaches. Coconut palms frame the sugar-white sand of Port Salut. Laid-back bars dot the beach and serve grilled fish and fruity rum cocktails.
Walk or ride a horse up to Citadelle Laferrière. The enormous mountaintop stronghold commands spectacular views in all directions. Within the 40-metre-high walls, you’ll find a huge central courtyard and a maze of hidden passageways. Run your hands over the enormous cannons and walk along the ramparts for a bird’s eye view over the jungle. Together with Sans Souci palace at the base of the fortress, Citadelle Laferrière is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Of all the tiny islands off the coast of Haiti, Île-à-Rat is one of the most idyllic. White sand and aquamarine water wrap around the island, with plenty of shade just steps from the beach. The snorkelling is incredible, thanks to the crystal-clear water and coral-covered cannons and anchors just offshore.
Hire a guide to visit Bassin Bleu, a trio of sapphire-blue pools linked by cascading waterfalls. Bassin Clair is the prettiest and surrounded by fern-covered rocks. The mineral-rich water will leave your skin feeling soft and smooth.
Getting around Haiti
Brightly painted “tap-tap” buses are a fun and affordable way to get around Haiti. Rental cars offer the freedom to explore Haiti at your own pace. Toussaint Louverture International Airport is a 15-minute drive from Port-au-Prince.