Update: Most unfortunately the Episcopal Cathedral of the Holy Trinity was completely destroyed in the earthquake. Only one of the marvelous and historic murals was able to be saved and the organ was lost. They are currently trying to raise money to rebuild the cathedral. The Halle Ste. Cecile, Haiti's premier concert venue, was also destroyed in the earthquake.
Visit the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity (Eglise Ste. Trinite), the seat of the Episcopal church in Haiti. A former bishop commissioned the early Haitian naif artists to paint murals inside the cathedral and they are stunning. The murals are by the most famous of the Haitian artists and each mural is different in style and mood from the others.
The small windows are clay sculptures and they are very interesting too. You could easily spend an afternoon inside the church enjoying the art work. It may be the coolest place in Port-au-Prince!
When you are finished, leave the cathedral and take an immediate right across the school yard. Go straight through the portal into a charming courtyard. On your left is a wonderful gift shop. There are Haitian paintings for sale along with all sorts of Haitian handicrafts. These are made by parents of the school children to help support the school. It's a great place to shop but you don't bargain here. The marked price is what you pay. The prices are very fair though.
In February there is the Carneval, the most important event in Haiti. But for 3 years already the fear of attacs leads to less people in the streets and there is not the same party as it used to be. This year (2005) several people were shot dead by the chimeres.
Haiti en Feu is a great theatrical presentation on the history of Haiti. Although some is in French most is in Creole. I had someone who understood the language translate what I didn't understand. What a play! Very rich in culture and the costumes were breathtaking. Although I don't know the exact specifics of where they put on the show, hopefully I will find out soon. If you hear of it and have the time for it, I definitely recommend it!
The press cafe is a small pub/bar located in Petionville. We went there one night to see Mamina. She is a young singer that sings here every thursday evening. It is very jazzy/dancy type music as she is an amazing saxophone player and singer. It was well worth the under 10$ (don't remember exactly how much) cover charge. If your lucky, she may even play some Witney Houston for you!!!!!
This Hotel is located in the middle of Petionville. Although I forget its exact address, it is by a big square. It seems as though this is where a lot of the UN/ non-governmental employees etc. would go. It is a very nice little place. We just stopped in to have a quick drink before going to the art gallery. I got the house drink and it was the strongest drink I have ever had in my life (even for in Haiti!!!!) Although I paid 5 bucks for it, I can say that I probably did get a fair amount of rum!!!! This is a great quiet place to just go and relax.
Yes, the beer is a must see activity! The most common beer in Haiti is "Prestige". Seriously it is not to bad.....I actually liked it!
This stuff is found anywhere and is approxiamtely 60 cents US. Yes 60 cents US!!!
November 2004-- It looks as the Prestige beer company has followed in the western worlds footsteps. They have now created a shmirnoff like cooler named "Prestige Silver"
Tasting sugarcane is a must when in Haiti. It is something that is very popular in this region. you can compare it to some sort of branch. You cut the red peeling off to get to the nice and juicy center. Suck out the sweet juice until you have had enough! I found it to be very addicting. I turned into the team peeler during the second trip!
We were quietly sitting down for supper one night when we were told there was a band coming to play for us. The organization had arranged for the band to come play at no cost to us. The band name was "Trouboudou" and they definetly knew how to get a bunch of Canadians dancing!!! There were 4 members, one playing the base, one the maracas, one the tamtams and the other the banjo.
As travelers know, travelling leads travellers to learn about different cultures (say travel what!!). I took this oppurtunity to play in this 3 nation volleyball match. It's not everyday you will be able to play volleyball with Canadians, Jordanians, and Pakistinians. It was pretty darn fun!!
Hatians are unbelievably artistic in many ways. The most amazing I find is there ability to paint. I have seen some of the most beautiful paintings during my travels to Haiti Haiti. One night we decided to visit a well known art gallery (I beleive called la gallerie Nader). The paintings were not your normal street paintings that you see on every corner. The average painting went for over 1000 american dollars. A little over my budget although the team leader boguht a few. I will stick to the paintings that you can bargain foron the street. Plus they are also beautiful and sometimes have a special meaning.
The pic is of me with my favorite picture at the gallery. Told myslef I would go back and get it someday!
When driving about to your destination sometimes it is important to accentuate the positive. In the midst of mass poverty, hope is found in the reconctruction that is going on here and there. I was stunned to see this nice looking building being built just a few minutes from the airport.
The nicest Hotel in town, but also the one in the worst condition and a lousy menu.
This historical place became famous through Graham Greenes novel "The Comedians". Now it is famous for the setting and the concert of RAM every Thursday.
I just arrived and did not have much time for sightseeing yet, but Petionville is a nice suburb of Port-au-Prince and at least it is no problem to walk around by foot for hours. have a look at the other pages, too.
Great dance and music! I wasn't expecting much when we went....boy was I suprised. These are young boys who originaly used to live on the streets of Port-au-Prince. Now they live at this home where they sleep, eat, go to school, pray and well yeah...DANCE! I was blown away by the choreography. They were truly amazing. For 5$ US it was well worth it!!!! They also have a guesthouse.
Was fortunate enough to see an internationaly renown band named RAM. They play Haitian music which is unbelievable. It is kind of a mix of rock/hatian/raggae. I was blown away. Well worth seeing! I would even pitty you if you missed it during your trip....