After a night of Dominica we obviously wanted to see what else was going on, on the island. On the 14th and the 15th of December we visited the Indians and hiked up to the boiling lakes.
Dominica is a very green island. They have a lot of jungles, forest, and different types of plants. There aren’t very many houses and the houses which are there, are multicolored. There biggest city is one big street with a couple of local shops. Most of their roads are dirt roads and I believe there isn’t very much money on the island. Also, there aren’t very many tourists and most of the tourists are American or British. However, the island does have an atmosphere; a positive atmosphere. Everybody is relaxed and ready to help. A lot of the people there are Rastafarians which already probably gives you an image of the vibe on the island.
On the 14th we went with the bus from where the boat was to the Indian reserve. The Indians don’t live as they used to but they try to preserve their cultures and traditions and share them with the rest of the world. On the tour we learnt about their culture, for example that women and men never used to live together in a house. The men had a separate house and the women had a separate house. After that some Indians showed us their local dance, which was quite interesting. It was however a bit touristic and you kind of got a fake feeling with it. But, on the other hand it was interesting to see how the Indians tried to preserve their culture. After the dancing we walked up to a waterfall. At the waterfall there were children jumping of cliffs and chilling there. Quite funny to see that children are just having fun in a place that is actually meant for tourists. From the Indian reserve we drove to Indiana River which was more a creek but definitely very beautiful. In this creek we took a boat and got a tour of one of the Dominicans. The guide took us through the creek which was in a jungle and showed us the different flora of the creek. We also knew that some of the Pirates of the Caribbean were filmed on the island. In the creek Pirates of the Caribbean 2 and 3 were filmed. There was an area where the trees were cleared out and our guide told us that Pirates of the Caribbean built a house there and one of the major scenes were filmed there. What was even cooler was that one of the tour guides brought Keira Knightly and Johnny Depp from the place where we started to the set. The creek was really green and picturesque. After the boat tour we went back to our own ship to get a good night’s rest before the hike to the boiling lakes.
On the 15th we hiked up to the boiling lakes. It was a quite tiring hike but interesting hike. In the jungle parts of Pirates of the Caribbean were also filmed. The hike took us about 6 or 7 hours. It started out with a little waterfall and along the way we almost constantly walked next to the stream. The beginning of the hike was quite easy but after we took a break and ate fruit at the stream it only got harder. Finally however we got to a point which I thought were the boiling lakes but it turned out to be desolation valley. In desolation valley one of the guides boiled eggs for us in the water and we got a mud facial. I was all prepared to go back down when it turned out we had to hike another part up. Finally, we arrived at the boiling lakes after a quite tiring hike. The boiling lake was very interesting though. It was one huge lake and the water inside was actually properly boiling. Bubbles came up through the surface and you saw it cook. The reason why the lake was boiling was because the boiling lakes are actually volcanoes and there is a crevasse in the earth where heat comes up. This heat is so warm it boils the water of the lakes which brings you boiling lakes. At the boiling lakes we had our lunch and after that we hiked back down. Along the way down we stopped at a stream so that we could swim. This was really refreshing! Everybody dripping from sweat, but the stream you didn’t really cool down. The stream was very warm because it was quite near to the boiling lake. Nevertheless, it still felt good. The hike down went much faster than the hike up. Maybe that was because we had one of the tour guides with us. This tour guide had that vibe the rest of the island also had. We were just walking down and suddenly he started singing/ rapping. It was really funny and we all joined along. He called himself DJ Forest. Our mood was instantly changed from negative to positive. This made it much more enjoyable to walk through the warm, humid jungle. Finally, we arrived at the little waterfall again. It was already quite dark but there was a cliff where you could jump off. The water here however, was really cold. But this was really nice after the long hike. After cliff jumping we walked back to the bus. We were so tired. Then all of a sudden one of the teachers said, “I think we have a flat tire”. No way is what we were all thinking. However, there was no reason to worry because only seconds after we stopped the bus about three cars stopped and what people walked by to help us. Also, they of course had a spare tire so after a few minutes we had a new tire and were well on our way back home.
The next day we left for Martinique. Dominica is probably not the first island that comes to mind when you think of vacation, but it definitely is a beautiful and very interesting island to visit.
Greetings from Dominica,