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Whether you’re looking for a rugged day of hiking, a heart-stirring day of diving, or just a lazy afternoon relaxing on a veranda surrounded by the sounds of birds, wind through leaves, and scenes unfound anywhere else, Dominica—and its people—await you with open arms, restorative days, and relaxing nights.
Dominica is truly an adventure island, with amazing experiences to try in and out of the water. Plunging cliff walls, kaleidoscopic coral reefs, eerie caves and enchanting thermal vents — Dominica’s underwater world is just as rich, vibrant, and varied as its topside attractions. The island’s waterfalls and natural pools are a must-see – plan a hiking trip to take in abundance of natural beauty of Dominica.
Dominica has a tropical climate with plenty of sunshine interjected by intermittent rainfall. The island’s annual temperature averages at 27 C. Frequent rainfall cools the tropical heat, nourishes the island’s extensive rainforest, and feeds its rivers, lakes, and waterfalls. On the coast, average rainfall registers 1,780 mm, but in the interior that figure is triple.
International flights from the U.S. and Europe are connected to the island through hubs in Antigua (ANU), Barbados (BGI), Martinique (FDF), St. Maarten (SXM), Puerto Rico (SJU), Guadeloupe (PTP) and St. Lucia (SLU).
Dominica is serviced by two airports: Douglas-Charles (DOM), formerly known as Melville Hall, and Canefield (DCF) Airports. Most visitors to Dominica will arrive through Douglas-Charles, the larger of the two airports.
All visitors, including U.S. citizens to and from the Americas, the Caribbean and Bermuda, will be required to have a valid passport or other accepted document that establishes your identity and nationality to enter and re-enter the United States.
Taxis are available at the airports and in Roseau, and can be arranged all over the island. They are easily identified by the letters, H, HA or HB preceding the registration numbers on the number plates. There are standard fees from the city to both airports.
There are a number of car rental agencies on the island offering vehicles for rent. But before you get on the road, you will need to obtain a driver’s license which costs $30 (US$12). You must be between 25 and 65 years old, with two years’ driving experience to qualify for a driver’s permit.
Dominica has a reliable public transportation system consisting of primarily private minibus operators. Bus stops can be found at designated points throughout the city depending on your destination. The bus fares are standardized and range from EC$1.50 to EC$10.25 according to the specific route. Bus rotation is fairly frequent throughout the day, but this method of transportation is not suitable for night travel.
Dominica has a modern and reliable telecommunications system. It is easy to find public phones in the city and in most communities. Hotels offer International Direct Dialing from their rooms, and there are three major mobile service providers on the island: Cable & Wireless, Digicel, and Orange Cariabe. The island’s area code is 767.
Dominica is predominantly Christian and has a number of churches representing a large array of denominations, including Roman Catholic, Protestant, Baptist, and Methodist. Information about services is available at your hotel or by calling the church or synagogue directly.
Dominica is extremely well connected and even the most basic accommodation in the rainforest is likely to have wi-fi. Many bars, cafes and restaurants offer free wi-fi to their customers.
The same guidelines for tipping that are followed in the US are applicable in Dominica. More often than not a service charge will already be included in your price, if not add 10–15% to the bill.
The local currency is the Eastern Caribbean dollar (EC$), which trades at EC$2.67 to US$1.00. Banks will offer EC$2.68 for a US$1.00 traveler’s cheque. Everywhere on the island, businesses accept United States Dollars, British Pounds, and Euros.
Most tourism-related businesses, such as hotels, restaurants, tour operators, and car rental agencies accept Master Card, Visa, and American Express credit cards, including traveler’s cheques.
ATMs dispense Eastern Caribbean dollars but are scarce outside of Roseau and Portsmouth.
There are three public hospitals on the island: the Marigot Hospital, the Portsmouth Hospital, and the premier Princess Margaret Hospital. Intensive care units are available at the Portsmouth Hospital and the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH). Several specialists and general practitioners operate private clinics.
The emergency contact for the Police, Ambulance and Fire Department is 999.