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Depending on its geographic position and its climate, there are better times in the year to visit a country. However, climate is not the the only reason why a the country is visited. Special events celebration plays a major role in someone’s decision to visit a given country.
Located in the northern hemisphere and with a tropical climate, Haiti is well grounded in this reality attesting that there are best times to visit a country. As the year goes by, Haiti experiences different seasons that last a few months each. There is the very warm season, the dry season, the cool season and the rain season.
La saison fraîche apparait à la mi-novembre pour s’en aller à la fin du mois de février. Pour ce laps de temps, la température moyenne maximale se situe autour de 32°C. À ce moment là, le jour le plus «froid» de l’année, 21 janvier, la température peut descendre jusqu’à un minimum de 23°C et monter jusqu’à un maximum de 31°C. En moyenne, le mois le plus frais est décembre.
The rain season starts in the third week of April and ends in early June, then starts again in August and ends in the second week of November. Every day during this period, the probability of having rain reaches 11%.
May is the wettest month : on May 19th (they say), this probability can go as high as 18%. This month should be avoided if you don't like too much rain.
In general, temperatures are high all year long, but are cooler in altitude (e.g. in Furcy). However, some cities have a better climate than others, and they say the weather is good at least nine months a year. These cities are: Cap-Haitien, Les Cayes, Fort-Liberte, Les Gonaives, Ile de la Gonave, Ile de la Tortue, Port-de-Paix and St-Marc. For Port-au-Prince, the water’s temperature is good all year long to bathe in it.
According to our data and many experts from the tourism industry and weather, the best time to visit Haiti is between November and March, because the temperatures are less warm and the rains are rare.
Besides the climate and the temperatures, special events and important dates that highlight the country’s culture and history are a good reason to visit Haiti. That being said, Haiti has many important dates in its calendar; dates that are expressed by activities organized in certain regions or all over the country, depending on the event or the Day.
The Independance Day is celebrated on January 1st of every year in the whole country. This celebration alway includes activities all across the country and the traditional « squash soup ». January is exactly in the middle of the best time to visit Haiti, because of the temperature. Numerous Haitians living in Canada, the United States and Europe go to celebrate the day over there.
The Port-au-Prince International Jazz Festival is a more or less recent event; celebrated only since 2007 in the month of January. This musical and cultural event is made of several concerts on several sites, which gives to a maximum of local citizens and tourists the opportunity to participate. This festival makes the non-Haitian tourists discover the local musical style (Konpa), but also shows them that Haitians are opened and adapt themselves to other musical styles.
The Jacmel carnival, celebrated in February each year - one week before the national carnival is a celebration that gathers all the people in the city. The carnival is a folk event expressed by the citizens wearing costumes and papier mache masks while dancing in the streets. It is an occasion for the tourists to assist a palpable representation of the city’s culture in all its facets.
The national carnival takes place in the capital (Port-au-Prince) and other cities like Gonaïves and Jacmel. This one is also a folk event with a different theme each year. Some of the Haitian musical bands (T-Vice, Djakout, Kreyol-La, etc.) play during the event.
The Flag Day is commemorated May 18th each year, mainly in Arcahaie, a city located at about 30 km north of Port-au-Prince. The decision to create a flag was taken in that city. This day is as important as Indépendance Day, because it’s celebrated all over the country and testifies the Haitian people’s pride. During the celebration, many Kids in costumes do choreographies and sing songs while the fanfare is playing along.
November 1st, Haitians celebrate what they call La Toussaint. It’s a catholic holiday during which all the Saints are honored. The next day (November 2nd), it’s the Day of the Dead, also known as fèt gede (in creole). This day is mainly celebrated by the voodoo people who do ceremonies in cemeteries. On some streets, there are people disguised and possessed by spirits called Gede doingshows for passers-by.
Christmas Day, the date is the same as anywhere else (December 25th). However, as family is a very strong value in Haiti, people gather with their family in particular and with close friends of the family to celebrate. It is also the time of the year for many christians (catholics and protestants) to assist special religious services in the nearby churches. Moreover, denpending on their economic power, many of them decorate their house and a Christmas tree, even if they’re celebrating a Christmas without snow.
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