Best time to go to Haiti
As with most Caribbean islands, Haiti makes the ideal escape from the Northern winter any time from November through to March.
Rainfall begins to increase in April, falling heavily by May – at the same time as the temperatures soar up to unbearable, particularly given the high humidity. Haiti is at its hottest in June to August, and while the rainfall slumps a little during these months, August and September are peak hurricane season, so be warned. Hurricanes hit harder here due to poor building standards and mass deforestation leading to floods and landslides. Carnival season lasts for several weeks throughout January and February, with floats, processions, music and dance, ending on Mardi Gras.
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WHAT TO DO IN HAITI & WHAT NOT TO
Things to do in Haiti…
Things not to do in Haiti…
Haiti travel advice
Aled Evans, from our leading Haiti specialists Undiscovered Destinations, shares his advice on travelling to Haiti: “Haiti is not like any other place in the Caribbean. If you want a ‘Caribbean’ holiday, then Haiti is not for you! The best description I have heard of Haiti is that it is a small part of West Africa that just happens to be in the Caribbean. History, culture, beautiful scenery and beaches combine to create a unique holiday destination. If you go with an open mind and a friendly smile you will have one of the best experiences that travel can offer.”
Headlines vs realityCasey Mead, from our partner G Adventures, says: “Keep an open mind at all times. Haiti is a surprising destination and unlike other Caribbean locations. It’s a great mix of experiences, but its recent history can’t be ignored. You’ll be doing a world of good by visiting and help spread the wealth in a place that really needs it. The people are extremely friendly and, above all else, they are in desperate need of tourists to help them rebuild their island nation following the devastating earthquake that occurred back in 2010.”
Aled Evans, from our leading Haiti specialists Undiscovered Destinations, says: “There are many issues in the country and as the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere you have to expect a lack of infrastructure and services. Despite this, you will find a warm and friendly welcome. Having an experienced guide with you is important as this will keep you from wandering into areas that may not be safe for tourists. Do not let this worry you, though; this is the same for somewhere like New York as it is for Haiti. The once high crime levels have dropped dramatically in recent years and are now comparable, if not better, than most Caribbean nations.”
Haiti highlightsCasey Mead, from our partner G Adventures, says: “Haiti has such variety – every experience is different so it’s really hard to pick just one. Visiting the Citadelle (a large fortress) in the far north was highly impressive; not many people expect to find a UNESCO world heritage site in Haiti. It was built in the early 1800s to protect a newly independent Haiti from the French. And visiting a Vodou (note, not voodoo) priest was especially memorable. Vodou is very far from what Hollywood would have us believe.”
AND A TIP FROM OUR HOLIDAY REVIEWS...
The most memorable part? Riding horseback up a mountain to the Citadelle; what an amazing construction. Also being lowered by rope to the beautiful Bassins Bleu. Just take note of what the holiday provider recommends to take. I would have been lost without a torch.
– Grace McGill
More about Haiti
Haiti is a name that is usually found splashed across newspaper headlines – but our Haiti travel guide shows that it is more than worthy of inclusion in travel brochures, too. This stunningly beautiful Caribbean island has a fascinating history, vibrant French-Creole culture, beautiful waterfalls spilling into azure pools – and no tourists. Yet. Read on to find out how you can explore this still undiscovered nation.