Dominica – The Nature Island of the Caribbean
Christopher Columbus first sighted the island in 1493 and it probably has not changed too much since then! Come for the dense forests, the numerous waterfalls and fast flowing rivers, the misty mountains, volcanic sand beaches and charming ramshackle villages.
Dominica offers a unique Caribbean experience, essentially appealing to the adventurous eco-influenced traveller, with a variety of trekking opportunities and bird watching. Whilst at sea, you have whale watching and some of the best diving in the region.
Night-life is almost non-existent, and restaurants tend to be hotel based, although there are a few really interesting rum shop options – we particularly like River Rock cafe located at the foot of Trafalgar Falls.
One of the larger islands in the Leeward chain, it also has one of the smallest populations (and longest living), so you really do get a feeling of space, a real sense of exploration and slow paced easy-going attitudes and genuine smiles.
Sandwiched between the French Islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe, with creole patios used in everyday conversation, although English is widely spoken. Its known as the nature island of the Caribbean – I might also add Rainbow Island, as hardly a day will pass without sunshine, heavy showers and brilliant rainbow.
Dominica has an easy charm and has deliberately followed a tourism path that embraces old time values. It has shunned the glitz and manicured tourism found on so many islands for something proudly authentic and totally natural and uncompromised, an attitude many clients find rather refreshing. The pleasures here are mainly nature-based, either in land or at sea.
It is undoubtedly one of the most scenic islands It is a favourite port of call for several of the larger cruise ships and they can disrupt the gentle pace with long lines forming for the most popular waterfalls etc. but by early afternoon they are usually gone.
We feature just three hotels – the Fort Young which is probably the only conventional international class hotel on the island. Located in the capital Roseau, facing the harbour front. Then we offer Secret Bay which is perched on a cliff top on the north-west coast at Portsmouth (see lead image), a one hour drive up the coast from Roseau. Eco influenced with just 4 sumptuous bungalows and suites, very different and perfect for the curious, adventure-minded and independent traveller. And the Rosalie Bay Resort, a delightful charming property located adjacent to the Rosalie River where it enters the wild Atlantic, a great place to totally chill out for a few days.
Of all the islands in this part of the Caribbean, Dominica is probably the most individual. It is wonderfully underdeveloped, almost proudly ramshackle and incredibly scenic. Mountains, dense forests, rivers, wildlife, eco-adventures galore at every turn. It seems to have hardly moved forward in the last decade at least, but that is all part of the attraction. Marie-Helene of Chic loves it, she was born there and seems to have been trekking, climbing and snorkelling even before she could walk!
The most popular months are November to May, when the days are usually bright and sunny, however as the island is lush and very green, it can attract rain all year – although this will usually fall in heavy bursts. Tropical storms and on occasions cyclones can be experienced June to October.
There are daily flights from Barbados and Antigua into Melville Hall airport in the north and then a scenic drive across the island. High-speed ferry service from St Lucia several times weekly.
Hotels & Resorts in Dominica
“There’s no such thing as the best hotel, just the right one…”
Click for Booking Terms, Price Guides & Flight Information
All price guides are Per Person Sharing Double Room (Entry level), based on travel between May and/or June when prices are generally at their lowest and include promotional offers.
Supplements will probably apply at other times, particularly mid-summer in the Med, and for rooms and/or transfers arranged for single travellers.
For example, the Caribbean and Indian Ocean prices for winter can be approximately double the May – June level and about 50% more in Asia.
Please refer to Travel Advice on our home page or look at www.fco.gov.uk as the Foreign Office may have issued specific destination information on safety and terrorism.