Island Lessons (Dominican Edition)

We hiked to the breathtaking Trafalgar Falls (photo courtesy of Amirh)

 It’s taken me quite some time to write this post.  I’m partly in denial that I’m back in the States. Dominica is such a small island but there is SO much to see and do.  Dozens of waterfalls, the 2nd largest boiling lake in the world, the Indian River (where parts of Pirates of the Caribbean was set), the Carib Territory where the indigenous Caribbean people still live, the beautiful and refreshing Emerald Pool, the Old and New Markets, Purple Turtle Beach, tons of sulphur spas and sulphur springs, village festivals…. Should I keep going? Needless to say I’ll have to return to the “Nature Isle” very soon to cover all of the activities I didn’t get to do in the 5 days I was there – I didn’t even mention anything about the beautiful life-loving French Creole (or Patwa) speaking Dominican people and how could I could forget the rum??

Here are just a few of the lessons I learned and experiences I enjoyed while in Dominica: 

Amirh at Ti Kwen Glo Cho Sulphur Spa (photo courtesy of Alex)

Don’t Wear a White Swimsuit to the Sulphur Spas:

There’s an awesome little village called Wotten Waven just south of Roseau that has these amazing wonders of nature called sulphur spas.  I’ll allow you to simply wikipedia all of the benefits of sulphur, but as a hint it’s called “nature’s beauty mineral.” Yes, the smell is horrid – but I only noticed it in certain areas on the way to the spa and not at the spa itself.  I highly recommend the spa called Ti Kwen Glo Cho because not only does it have the big hot sulphur pool, but it also has relaxing individual cast-iron tubs with bamboo pipes bringing more hot water straight from the surrounding rivers and waterfalls. Note to self (and you guys) for future visits though: since the sulphur turns the water a yellowish -brown color, leave the white bathing suit at home.  I would probably be mad if that swimsuit weren’t almost 6 years old – but even if it was new, the sulphur spas were SO worth it!

Read on to hear about the other experiences. Continue reading

Next Stamp: Dominica

When's my next passport stamp coming?

I think about time in terms of travel. I’ll always remember 2006 was when I toured Western Europe. Junior year spring break was San Juan, Puerto Rico, and senior year was the Bahamas. I’ll be turning 25 in Brazil this December (hopefully!) and in 2 days I’ll be visiting Dominica in the Caribbean.  It’s always easier to remember time in terms of travel because trips are so much more memorable than memorizing dates or years or ages. That said, I’m always looking forward to my next trip – specifically those that will earn me a passport stamp. Within the next year, I hope to go to Brazil, take my first trip to the continent of Africa (visit the original Memphis), try to visit another one of my friend’s who’s in the Peace Corps in Cambodia, and maybe hit up Greece. Sounds like a lot, but there is a certain beauty of being a teacher with paid summers off (insert evil laugh here).

Dominica - the Nature Island of the Caribbean

I’ve said ALL of this to say: my next international trip is less than 72 hours away! I’ll be visiting my very good college friend who is a Peace Corps Volunteer in Dominica. NOT the Dominican Republic! I get that a lot. Dominica is a small Caribbean island near Martinique and St. Lucia. It’s called the “Nature Island” of the Caribbean and I can’t wait to just relax and enjoy everything nature has to offer – and I’m not even an outdoorsy person!  I’m looking forward to hiking through its rainforests and stumbling upon waterfalls (but definitely not the animals!).  Some other things you should know about Dominica is that it has the 2nd largest boiling lake in the world (big feat for such a small island) and cricket is THE sport here.  Hopefully, when I get back I’ll be able to tell you a lot more about Dominica. Until then, check out this site Discover Dominica. The tagline is “Defy the Everyday” – I already know I’m going to love it here!

What do you want to know about Dominica? What are some of your other favorite Caribbean destinations?