We were glad to get off the boat and take a tour of the island. The moorings at the capital are totally exposed to anything from the west. As it turns out the waves were coming from the southwest and also the west at times so the boat was continuing to roll around.
The water taxi came as planned. Once on shore at the Anchor Bar, owned by a Texan couple now, our tour driver met us. Of course being local we got to drive to the gas station with him then return to the Anchor to pick up three nice folks from Guadeloupe who where touring the islands with their boat. They did not speak any English but the drive was fairly good in French. So then off to Customs and Immigration. Not a bad process, a few forms to fill out then the proper stamps. Dominica allows you to Clear in and Clear out with one visit as long as it does not extend beyond two weeks.
Now off on the tour. Dominica is a mix of shacks and very nice homes. Many North Americans, Europeans and now Japanese and Chinese are investing in the place. Building some public center, schools and of course buying land to build nice houses. Tourism has replaced agriculture as the main source of revenue for the island. Cruise ships come most days to the small town. Tour drivers are happy but the passengers never buy meals in the restaurants, everything is on the ship and paid for already.
Our tour included a couple of waterfalls, rain forest, views of the town from above, a great lunch at a small restaurant hanging right over the tropical river and the botanical garden. We also stopped at the super market to buy some additional provisions. Very nice driver and the price was extremely reasonable for a 7 hour tour.
Dominica gained independence at the same time as Grenada form the UK. So they drive on the left but still have French influence in things since they also controlled the place. Originally it was conquered by the Spanish who took out the local inhabitants.
This is one of the wood stave pipelines that carries water from the upper rainforest areas to small hydro-electric power plants. A large percentage of the electricity is generated this way. Additional power is produced from diesel generation. Currently they are constructing several geothermal power plants with the help of a company from Iceland. Iceland is very good at this type of power and should be able to assist the country. Dominica is located on fissures that allow volcanic derived thermals to come to the surface so the heat is free.
Our tropical lunch stop. Down below the railing is the river from Trafalgar Falls. At this higher elevation it is like you are sitting in the trees having a meal. Very nice Mahi Mahi was served with sides of tropical fruits and veggies.
Trafalgar Falls, at least part of it. There are actually two falls that come together then combine with several other below to form the Roseau River to the sea. Part of the water passes through some thermal underground sections and comes out warm to hot. Volcanic activity is never far away in the Caribbean.
Like from Jurassic Park movie the trees have huge buttresses since the soil is poor and they would fall over otherwise. Interestingly there are no mosquitoes or other biting insects along the trails.
Do not park here. This school bus was crushed by the huge tree limb that fell. No one was in the bus. The tree is still alive and doing well. This is part of the botanical gardens at the edge of town.