Absolute Travel’s tours in Haiti showcase this misunderstood country’s European influences, vibrant people, and striking natural beauty for the world to see. Whether you’re seeking an active adventure, quick getaway, or a more meaningful responsible vacation, our adventure vacations in Haiti are a wonderful option.
Although this French-speaking country is part of the sparkling Caribbean islands, Haiti has an identity all its own. Haitians are working hard to move past their reputation as one of the world’s poorest countries and is now getting back on the map for its assets, not just its hardships. A trip to Haiti is not just for non-profits and volunteer-focused vacations anymore—Haiti is a destination worth visiting to appreciate the sheer beauty of this multi-layered country.
Years of perceptions about Haiti—insecurity, corruption, poverty—make it hard to believe that just decades ago celebrities like Mick Jagger and Jackie Onassis chose to vacation here. Travel to Haiti was a major part of the Haitian economy during the dictatorship of Duvalier. Haiti was a common vacation option for people who were impressed by the Creole cuisine, Caribbean beaches, voodoo rituals, and the rich history. After many ups and downs and a long pause put on visiting, it’s time to consider vacationing in Haiti again. If you’re interested in a private trip to Haiti, expect a destination packed with a unique and mesmerizing history.
In 1804, Haiti became the first independent nation of Latin America, and was the first country to be established after a slave revolt (all the leaders were former slaves). That revolution only lasted a decade. This Caribbean country is packed with a storied history, and visitors will be in awe of what these welcoming islanders have overcome. Travelers to Haiti will visit the Citadel, a striking fortress built on top of a mountain in 1820. The imposing structure can be seen from far away, and is a reminder of Haiti’s past, and how much its people have overcome. Travelers to Port-au-Prince, the capital city, will include a visit to the Iron Market, where visitors will find everything from chickens to chairs and everything in between. The red structure was initially created in France for the train station to Cairo. The plan never unfolded, so then president of Haiti, Florvil Hyppolite, shipped the Iron Market to Haiti to become their central market. Travelers to Haiti must also visit Port-au-Prince and the growing number of boutiques, galleries, cafes and people, who offer a kaleidoscope of color and energy.
Jacmel is known as the handicraft hub of Haiti, and visitors will be pleased that strolling through the streets you will be able to purchase beautiful colorful crafts directly from the artisan. Much of what is for sale is actually recycled material, and almost every piece has its own story. We highly recommend strolling through this area for its beaches, its people, and its beautiful keepsakes to remind you of your adventure in Haiti.
Another reason to visit–the beaches. For American’s seeking a nearby beach getaway, a custom trip to Haiti may be the answer. Modest beach hotels that focus on the sunshine, salty air, and simple things reign here and are a low-key answer to other Caribbean Islands’ lavish over-the-top properties. Watersports from surfing to snorkeling to paragliding are a fun way to enjoy the coastlines, or opt to relax with a book, a hammock, and a refreshing cocktail.
With its smattering new upscale properties, optimistic people, and renewed interest in the Haitians and their culture, Haiti is back. Whether non-profits, adventure travelers, business travelers or people seeking something off-the-beaten-path, Haiti will impress. We’re proud to share this misunderstood destination with travelers.
Note: In addition to our custom private trips to Haiti, Absolute Travel is the travel partner for American Jewish World Service, who funds 40 extraordinary organizations in Haiti and is a leader in the U.S.-based movement for Haitian-led redevelopment. Please contact our Managing Director, Leslie Overton, should you want more information on our voluntourism journeys to Haiti alongside this incredible Absolute Awareness partner.