Dominica Tourist Sites Recovering Post-Erika
PHOTO: Dominica’s Indian River. (Photo courtesy of the Discover Dominica Authority)
Dominica continues to recover from the devastation of tropical storm Erika, said officials at the Discover Dominica Authority (DDA). The agency this week released an update on the rebuilding of island public and tourist facilities following the August storm, which dumped 12 inches of rain on the island causing extensive flooding, loss of life and more than $200 million in damage.
While the majority of the island’s 94 hotels and resorts are open, Jungle Bay, a southeastern Dominica-based luxury eco-resort, sustained “severe damage” during the storm and remains closed, officials said. “The future of the resort has not yet been determined,” they added in a statement.
Among the operating properties, Dominica’s Rosalie Bay Resort recently received the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA)’s CHIEF award for sustainability. "Rosalie Bay Resort's sustainability management plan has always guided us and continues to do so, particularly as we recover from the recent devastating effects of Tropical Storm Erika," said Daryl Aaron, the resort’s manager.
CHTA announced it had raised $51,000 through "Caribbean Hotels Unite for Dominica," a joint initiative and online auction with the Dominica Hotel and Tourism Association (DHTA) launched by Karolin Troubetzkoy, CHTA’s acting president. The funds will be distributed in Dominica under guidelines created by a joint CHTA/DHTA committee.
Obstructions and infrastructure damage shut down parts of the Waitukubuli National Trail following Erika, said Forestry Division officials. Seven segments of the trail are currently open to hikers, who are “advised to exercise caution when hiking the open segments of the trail as some landscape features may have changed,” officials said.
The level-four difficulty mountain hike to Dominica's Boiling Lake, which features hot streams, hot boiling mud, mini-geysers and forests, is also accessible. Other popular nature and hiking sites including Trafalgar Falls, Emerald Pool, Middleham Falls, Freshwater Lake, the Cabrits National Park and the Syndicate Nature Trail are open.
Long a significant entry among Caribbean cruise ports, Dominica experienced strong growth in 2014, hosting 286,573 cruise ship visitors, a 24.3 percent increase over 2013. Erika’s impact is not expected to slow the cruise traffic growth. DDA officials expect 174 cruise ship calls through April, carrying approximately 290,395 passengers on ships from Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line and P & O Cruises.
"It was difficult in the days following the storm, but it is remarkable how quickly we have recovered,” said Colin Piper, Dominica’s director of tourism. "Travelers will be pleased to know that their favorite locations and activities are open for business and ready for their next visit."
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