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Time difference
with New-York 0, GMT -5.

Electricity
220 Volts in Port-Morgan (110 Volts elsewhere in the country).

Climate
A tropical climate tempered by the trade winds: a hot and sultry season (about 30°C - 86°F)
From August to October and a dry and cooler season (about 26°C - 79°F) from November to April. Water temperature: 26 to 28°C - 79° to 83°F.

Average hygrometry: 60%.
Average rainfall is 50% less than that of the neighbouring islands.
Lightweight clothing is recommended (natural fibres: linnen, cotton…) and also something warmer for higher ground (on the main island) or for nights during the dry season.

Weather
Daily weather forecast and the satellite photo.

For sailors : the maritime weather forecast of the Caribbean

Languages
French and Creole are the official languages of the country although Creole remains the most spoken language in Haiti

Local currency
The official currency is the Gourde although Haitian Dollars are generally used for counting. However, Haitian Dollar coins and bank notes do not exist!
1$ (Haitian dollar) = 5 Gdes

Means of payment
Banks are open from 9am to 1pm from Monday to Friday.
American Dollars are recommended. Other currency cannot be exchanged in all banks.

You can either pay by cheque or by credit card in Port Morgan. We also offer you the possibility of exchanging your foreign currency.

Formalities
A passport is compulsory but a visa is not necessary.

Useful address
The Embassy of Haiti in Paris : 10 rue Ribot, 75017 Paris. Phone : 01 47 63 47 78

How to get there ?

By plane
 » The airport of Port au Prince, 13km from the town centre.
Airport taxes: 30 US $.
Direct flight (12h) with Air France from Roissy airport
Flight with stopover in Miami, mainly with American airlines.

 » Interior flight to Les cayes (45mn) or by road (4h).
And transfer from Les Cayes to Port Morgan by boat (1h).

By boat

VHF canal 16 or 9
From Beata Island (southern point of the Dominican Republic), it is 148 nautical miles.
Allow about 30 hours with a tail wind using either a spinnaker or Genoa jib with western trade winds.
Entering Ferret bay and access to Port Morgan
Circumnavigate L’Île à Vache from the south, then sail along the western coast then north until you reach 18°06’63”N / 73°41’78”W.
Change course to 175° and enter the very sheltered bay on the port side.
Anchor in 4 to 5 metres of water or moor.
US nautic maps
DMA 26210 (general, from the south of the Dominican Republic to the east of Haiti)
DMA 26203 (map of L’Île à Vache + map of Cayes)

Transports in Haïti

in town
Taxis
Taps-Taps (taxi cars, colourful minibuses)

between towns
4x4 rental
Buses (old American school buses)
Taps-Taps (taxi cars, colourful minibuses)

Transports on Île à Vache

No cars are allowed (for the preservation of the area)
You can travel on foot, on horseback or by boat

Festivals

 » January 1 : Independance Day
 » February 18 : Carnival
 » May 1
 » May 18 : Flag Day
 » August 15 : Assumption
 » Octobre 17 : Fête Dessalines
 » November 1
 » November 18 : Fête Vertières
 » December 5 : Discovery Day
 » December 25 : Christmas

Art and Culture

 » music : racine music, kompa, carnival meringue
 » primitif art : paintings, wrought iron, wood caerving
 » craft : wood painting, lace, embroidery

Things to taste

» Accras : deep-fried speciality that can be eaten either warm or cold as a starter with cress and seved with haitian puch.
» Blanc-manger : coconut-based dessert
Drinks Barbancourt rhum, Crémas, Bois d’Ebène, Mmmh, Le Brasier, Mabi, ...
» Bouillon de calalou or gombo : minuscule long and pointed fruit-vegetable, filled with white seeds which produces a sticky liquid when wet.
» Fruit : pineapple, figs (name given to bananas), coconut, corrosol, chadèque, guava, mango, papaya, p’tite malice, ...
» Riz diondions : rice with mushrooms which grow on the bark of trees.
» Chiquetailles de morue : served during cocktails
» Shellfish : crabs, shripms, crayfish, rock lobsters, ...
» Grillots : grilled pork, spiced with chilli and bitter orange juice.
»  Lambis : spiced shellfish (conch), rubbed with papaya leaves then cooked
» Sauces : paille de fer, ti malice, ...
» Soupe jouroumou or soupe grasse : soup made with srarchy fruit, resembling a melon.
» Tassos : The preparation of tassos comes from Indians and buccaneers who used to dry their meat in the sun for days. You can get meat and poultry tassos.

What to read

» Le Charme des après-midi sans fin : Dany Laferrière
» Le manuscrit de Port-Ebène : Dominique Bona (Prix Renaudo 1998)
» Les Comédiens : Graham Greene
» Pays sans chapeau : Dany Laferrière
» Recettes Simples de Cuisine Haïtienne & Conseils Utiles de Ménage : Mme Niniche Gaillard