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Top 7 reasons to visit Haiti

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Traveling to a country is to go with curiosity to discover it, even if it is not the first time going there. Thus, several reasons can push someone to escape toward a destination which will do him good as much as possible. Whatever one may say, all the reasons are a legitimate loophole to run away from everyday stress and routine, in order to offer oneself a dream vacation. Each sun destination has its own way of allowing its visitors to experience an extraordinary experience. As far as Haiti is concerned, here are 7 mega reasons to step on its soil one day or another.

1.- The beaches

The north and south of the country are full of beautiful beaches with blue-green, turquoise blue, azure blue waters ready to amaze you.

Whether it’s at Île-a-Vache, at Côte des Arcadins, in Jacmel, Cap-Haitien or elsewhere in the country, these beaches are well worth a visit. Their fine white, gray or brown sands are perfect for lying down or playing a game of volleyball. Even more, they are ideal to do water activities (jetskiing, snorkeling, kayaking, etc.).

Furthermore, a swim in the sea will give you the opportunity to relax your aching muscles due to the many months of work without holidays. There are no better places than at the edge of one of these beaches to watch a beautiful sunset while the evening gently comes in. It’s even truer for Haiti because this show can be accompanied by a musical performance and a tasting of delicious seafood grilled on the fire; you must absolutely live such experience.

2.- The Gastronomy

It would be pretentious to say that Haitian cuisine is the best in the entire Caribbean, however, nothing prevents us from saying that it is distinguished by its unique flavors.

For instance, in the north of the country, particularly in Cap-Haitien, people are known to be outstanding cooks. However, that does not diminish the merit of people in other parts of the country who are good at cooking as well.

Basically, Haitian dishes are delicious, and their tastes are enhanced with natural and local spices. Not only that, all the ingredients used are collected the same day, so they are cooked with all their freshness.

During your visit there, don’t miss the opportunity to try a fritay dish. It consist of fried plantain, usually accompanied by gryo (fried pork meat) or taso (fried goat meat), akra (salt-flavored malanga donut), salad and pikliz (a hot pepper flavored condiment). Take also the opportunity to taste a good diri djondjon (mushroom flavored rice) with a delicious Creole sauce, no matter where you make your stay.

3.- Seafood

Of course, seafood is part of the gastronomy. However, the fact that they are cooked directly on the fire gives them an exquisite taste; and that's a valid reason to split them from the gastronomy.

Without dethroning Haitian cuisine as a whole, grilled seafood is probably the best way to enjoy a divine Haitian dish. Whether it is lobster, langoustine, shrimp, grilled conch or smoked fish, these seafood are always freshly caught and often cooked before your eyes. Thus, you and your taste buds will live a delicious culinary experience. That's why we strongly suggest you to taste one or more seafood grilled right on the fire to really consider your stay in Haiti as completed, even if you do not take a gastronomy stay.

4.- Tourist attractions

Haiti is literally synonymous with tourist attractions. There is a multitude of sites to visit, in the north as well as in the south. It is with the help of these sites that Haiti will let your curiosity discovered it and will explain all its tourist wealth.

Buildings like Citadelle la Ferriere, built since the indépendence war, are still standing to prove the efforts made by the precursors of the independence, to get the country out of the French domination.

Other attractions such as Bassin Bleu, Saut-Mathurine, Touyac waterfall, Marie-Jeanne cave, etc., you will have to see them face to face and experiment them to understand the natural beauty of the country.

Some others like the National Pantheon Museum, Limbe Museum, Ogier Fombrun Museum will use their authentic contents since the time of the Tainos to make you live the country’s history.

5.- The Barbancourt rum, the Prestige beer and the Clairin

It is true that these three drinks are very popular in the four corners of the country, but each of them differs from the other two by its unique taste.

However, the fact that Barbancourt rum has crossed several borders overseas, that gives it a certain notoriety over the other two. With its range of 5 products: (White, 3 Stars, Special Reserve 5 Stars - aged 8 years, Domain Reserve - aged 15 years, Pango), Barbancourt has not left anyone indifferent. You certainly have noticed it already or will notice it during a visit.

As for the Prestige beer, it's not that we want to compare it to the Corona or the Heineken, but its name speaks for itself. Old and young people appreciate it very much for its taste. For many Haitians, a person who has never tasted a Prestige has never drank real beer.

What about the Clairin? Properly speaking, it is a brandy, and the distilleries that make it swarm all over the country. All the distilleries make it the same way, but each brand contains a different alcohol concentration. Some even go up to 46.5%.

When you’ll go to Haiti, you will have to taste at least one of these products to experience what you have just read.

6.- The Jacmel Carnival and the National Carnival

Talking about Jacmel inevitably involves talking about its famous carnival.

Every year, this event increases the popularity of Jacmel, as Haitians from all over the country and even those living abroad rush into the city to celebrate the festivity that is out of the ordinary with the Jacmelians. For one day only (2nd Sunday of February), citizens adorned with shimmering colors costumes and papier mache masks perform folk dances in the streets of the city with catchy music to express the carnival. When you’ll be there, the music will play in your head until the national carnival, a week later.

Usually the national carnival takes place in Port-au-Prince, but it can be celebrated in another city. Its concept is exactly the same as Jacmel’s; however, it is obvious that there are more spectators.

7.- The Port-au-Prince International Jazz Festival

Offered to the general public and festival-goers since 2007, the Port-au-Prince International Jazz Festival, with cultural and musical flavors, is worthy of what can be seen in big cities like Montreal.

This event is a golden opportunity to enjoy a musical salad prepared by big names in the music industry in general. For a whole week, concerts take place in several places of the capital and its surroundings: the Sugar Cane Historical Park, the Champ-de-Mars, halls of the big hotels, etc.

Always celebrated in the month of January, it is an opportunity for you to escape the winter and let the heat of the music transpose you in the same «groove» as the musicians performing on the different stages.

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7 bonnes raisons de visiter Haiti

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