Paramaribo Things to Do

  • Take off your shoes before entering
    Take off your shoes before entering
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  • Roaring fire
    Roaring fire
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  • Priest walking around the pile with fire
    Priest walking around the pile with fire
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Most Recent Things to Do in Paramaribo

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    Reformed Church

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    The original Reformed Church - founded in 1668 - was destroyed by fire in 1821. The current building was completed in 1837 to a similar octagonal design.

    Until around year 1850, the church was a state church (the state was paying for the clergy and running costs) and was used almost exclusively by the elite of the city with all services conducted in Dutch. After the 1850s the church opened its doors to African slaves and the lower classes. “Negro-English” — a pidgin language used by the slaves — was introduced in the services.

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    Currency museum

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    On 1 January 2004, the Surinam Dollar replaced the Surinam Guilder as the new monetary system. It was decided to make the change for two reasons, firstly as the Netherlands no longer use Guilder since the introduction of the Euro, and secondly to bring Surinam in line with the other Caribbean countries which all use dollar as their currency. Notes are in denominations of SRD100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of 250, 100, 25, 10, 5 and 1 cents.

    Guilder notes and coins are still in circulation, however they have been re-valued to a ratio of 1000 Guilder per 1 Surinam Dollar.

    I was very interested to see square coins on display in the museum.

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    Susannah du Plessis House

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    Susannah Maria Duplessis was an infamous plantation owner - infamous because of her horrendous treatment of slaves!

    One of the stories about her tells how she became increasingly fed up with the baby of one of her slaves who was crying. When the mother was unable to silence the crying infant, Susannah insisted on her own method to stop the baby' screams - she held it upside down in the river until it was silent - for good!

    Another story relates to he husband's alleged affair with one of the young female slaves. When Susannah heard her man tell his mistress that he "couldn't live without her beautiful breasts", she had them cut off the poor girl and served them on a plate for her husband's dinner!

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    Presidential Palace

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    This building which originates from 1730 was formerly used as the Governor's residence. Since independence, it has been the Presidential Palace, and was restored in 1995. It is on one side of Independence Square in the centre of Paramaribo.

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    Ministry of Finance

    by grets Updated Oct 19, 2004

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    The Lodge House from 1836, was originally built to perform weddings, the tower being added to imitate the wedding hall in Vlissingen in Netherlands. Its bricks were the ballast from the ships that came from Europe in the years that Suriname was a Dutch colony. The building is now used by the Ministry of Finance an is found on Onafhankelijksplein (Independence Square), a grassy square that forms the centre of Paramaribo.

    In front of the Ministry of Finance is a statue of Suriname's most famous politician Johan Adolf Pengel, a prime-minister of the sixties.

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    WWII Memorial

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    The bauxite export was probably Suriname's most important contribution to the allied forces during World War II. Aluminium, made from bauxite, was very important for constructing airplanes.

    Suriname was on its own during the German occupation of The Netherlands (1940-1945). At the time The Netherlands got occupied, the Germans had a large ship, the Goslar, in Paramaribo. The captain of the ship managed to sink the ship before it could be taken over by the Surinamese authorities. The remains of the ship still lie in the harbor of Paramaribo.

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    Jules Albert Wydenbosch Bridge

    by grets Updated Oct 19, 2004

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    The 1 ½ km long bridge spans the Surinam River, linking Paramaribo and Commonwijne. The bridge is 55m high and was built in Year 2000. Wydenbosch was president of Suriname from September 15, 1996 to August 12, 2000, The Surinam River carries mud from the Amazon, hence its brown colour.

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    Queen Wilhelmina

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    Also within the Fort Zeelandia Complex is a statue to the Dutch Queen Wilhelmina.

    Queen Wilhelmina Helena Pauline Orange-Nassau (August 31, 1880 - November 28, 1962) was Queen of the Netherlands from 1890 to 1948, tghus also reigning over Surinam which at that time was a Dutch colony. She is revered in Surinam, although not everyone shares the pride in the Dutch heritage. Whilst standing by her statue, we encounter a deranged local man who shouts and swears that Surinam is South American, NOT Dutch.

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    Red letter box

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    I was aware that the Uk was famous for its red letter boxes, but I didn't realise that the Dutch used the same design back in the old days. This letter box was found alongside Fort Zeelandia, and dates from the 18th century.

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    Another famous bust

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    Titus Anthony Jacob van Asch van Wijck (b. 1849 - d. 1902) was governor of Surinam between 27 Jun 1891 - 12 May 1896. He was very well respected as he did lots of good for Surinam and has a mountain range named after him.

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    Officers' Buildings

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    All around the fort complex are the remains of some beautiful 18th century white-painted wooden buildings which served as accommodation for the officers stationed at the fort. They still retain much of their grandeur today.

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    Fort Zeelandia

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    Our first stop is at the Fort Zeelandia on the waterfront. The fort was built by the French in 1640 and taken over and reinforced by the English in 1651, who named it Fort Willoughby after their leader, but it was later renamed Fort Zeelandia when the Dutch conquered Surinam in 1667. Many changes have taken place to the fort over the centuries and since 1968 it has housed the National Museum, apart from a small period of eleven years when it was used for the detention and torture of political prisoners after the coup of 1980. The fort is pentagonal with five bastions, one on each corner, and the walls are made of shell-stone. The museum is housed on two floors and include such displays as Susanna du Plessis belongings (a rich and infamously cruel plantation owner), pharmaceutical jars, a bottle collection which includes modern Coke bottles, a model of the fort, a reconstructed Amerindian dwelling, guns, a cobblers workshop and an excellent photo exhibit on slavery in Surinam. No photos are allowed inside.

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    Duch in South America? ck out streets in Suriname

    by Prinsalsita Written Dec 2, 2007
    gravenstraat main road in suriname
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    drive, walk, bike around town and you will feel in Dutch land with a mix of india, africa, asia and all the cultures

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    Flowermarket in the Cultuurtuin

    by theo1006 Updated Feb 19, 2007

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    On Sunday-mornings there is a flowermarket in the Cultuurtuin. For flower lovers in general and orchid lovers in particular.

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    Arya Dewaker Hindu Temple

    by grets Written Oct 19, 2004

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    One of the largest Hindu temple in the Caribbean, it took 25 years to build, financed by donations only, and was completed only two years ago.

    35% of the population of Surinam are Hindu.

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Paramaribo Things to Do

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