On November 15, the Government of Dominica announced that protocols were approved to allow the resumption of ferry services to Dominica for the first time since March 2020. The protocols for the ferry passengers are the same as travelling to Dominica by air.
Disembarking travelers require:
a Negative PCR test taken 72 hours before arrival,
health notification of approval to travel to Dominica, after completing the health questionnaire,
vaccination certificate (if applicable), and
proof of payment for the entry Antigen test.
Upon arrival, vaccinated travelers will undergo the Antigen test and if negative, will be medically cleared. Non vaccinated travelers will also undergo an Antigen test, followed by five to seven days of mandatory quarantine.
L’Express Des Iles
L’Express Des Iles resumed services between Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, and St. Lucia on November 21, 2021. To book a trip and for updated schedules visit their official website: www.express-des-iles.fr
Val Ferry announced that its service between Dominica, Guadeloupe, and Martinique will start up again on December 10, 2021. To book a trip and for updated schedules visit their official website: www.valferry.fr
Initially only 50 passengers will be allowed to disembark the ferries in Dominica. However, the return of the ferry not only mean return of travelers from the French West Indies but also increased connectivity for travelers from Europe.
On December 8th, American Airlines commences the highly anticipated non-stop commercial jet service between Miami International (MIA) and Douglas Charles Airport. Announced by AA on July 23, Dominica is among the new destinations in the Caribbean as the airline expands its services in the region.
The airline will initially operate twice weekly on Wednesday and Saturdays using Embraer 175 aircraft. The Embraer 175 (E175) have a seventy-six (76) passenger capacity, with twelve first class seats, and sixty-four premium seats with extra leg room and main cabin seats.
December AA Schedule
In addition to offering easy access out of Miami, these flights greatly increases Dominica’s North American access connectivity. Through the American Airlines network, these flights allow for same day connections to 42 North American cities and territories.
AA Connecting Cities
There was such tremendous interest and response to the initial offering, that American announced that starting January 5th the flights will increase to three times weekly.
Hotel the Champs looks forward to welcome new and returning travelers via American Airlines.
Hotel the Champs received recognition by one of the world’s top recommendation and hotel search engine companies, Travelmyth. The Champs received 8 badges from Travelmyth as one of the best small hotels in Dominica.
Hotel the Champs continues to make strides providing five-star service in an intimate home away from home environment. We are certified for Safe in Nature and Work in Nature travelers wishing to enjoy nature island splendor.
It has been a few months since we gave an update on how our expansion is progressing. The COVID-19 pandemic did slow the construction works down some. However, our crew is working and it is all beginning to take shape. The bulk of noisy and dusty work is just about done.
The Walls are Up
We have walls! You can now see that our (soon to be) two new Superior XL Rooms coming together nicely. We are now able to distinguish between the two rooms and their interior spaces. With the bathroom walls in place, we are preparing to start the next phases of this project: tiling, fittings. Soon we will be painting and putting in furnishings. We can’t wait for the day when these rooms will be ready to welcome guests.
Looking out to The Cabrits from the Balconies
The views will be splendid!We are not sacrificing any of the signature Hotel the Champs views with this expansion. From their balconies, guests will still have uninterrupted views of the Cabrits as well as the Caribbean Sea and the community of Picard.
Balcony of Rooms 6 & 7
Our new Superior XL Rooms (Room 6 and Room 7) are on the middle level, and as with our existing Superior XL Room will comfortably accommodate up to 4 individuals with the different bed configurations. Our Superior XL Room has the option of a King bed or two Twin XL beds as well a Queen sofa bed, making it ideal for groups or family trips.
We are always telling you about how wonderful a stay at Hotel the Champs can be. Today we feature a beautifully written experience by Travel Blogger, Clem of the blog “Travel with Clem“. Clem recently visited Hotel the Champs accompanied by Dominican Bouyon Band, “Signal Band“. In her review of the hotel, Clem says,
“Regardless of the room that you pick, you get access to all the room amenities, high speed wifi throughout the whole property, and a modern style bathroom that fits the vibes of the room you choose.”
She also give high praises to our restaurant and the breakfast menu:
..I was particularly impressed with everything we could choose from in the breakfast menu! In fact, because of their breakfast, they can easily rank as one of the top restaurants in Dominica… I love staying at hotels where I don’t have to think about breakfast, because it helps me jump start my day and save time!
Breakfast at the Champs
Clem & Signal Band at Indian River
Beyond the hotel, Clem and Signal Band visited some of the sites and attractions in the area that we also include as part of a Hotel the Champs package. The sites visited were Indian River, Cabrits National Park, and Belle Hall Beach.
The visit was documented by Discover Dominica Authority as part of a travel series collaboration.
Clementine “Clem” Affana is a Medical Doctor by profession, an entrepreneur, travel blogger, business owner and life enthusiast. Passionate of travel and cultural immersion, she build the brand “Travel with Clem” in 2016, which teaches young millennials and busy professionals to travel the world without having to quit their full-time job. She has experienced cultural diversity in more than 20 countries.
This week we will take you away from Hotel The Champs and the surroundings. Behind the Macoucherie rum factory you can hike a long way. The Macoucherie rum Factory is 24 km from The Champs direction Roseau. Just before the (new) bridge you go down to the left where you see a walking trail.
The first part of the trail is “flat”… well as “flat” as it can be in Dominica, nothing is flat in this beautiful nature island but the beginning of this trail is nice and as I call it “flat”. You will see parts of the river on your right hand side on your way up.
After about 1 hour walking the trail goes steep up. (sorry we did not reached that point on or walk) For more information about this walk / hike we will put you in contact with the owner of Tamarind Tree who can also organise a guide if you wish.
The river is nice and calm and very relaxing to look at.
In the next blog we will show you some of the fruits we found on our Macoucherie walk.
Dominica is called the Nature Island of the Caribbean, once you will enter the country (by sea or air) you will understand why.
At Hotel The Champs we are not farmers but because it is so easy to grow fruits / veggies (plants, flowers and trees) we decided to put some herbs / veggies in the soil. Please check below in the first picture you see an eatable hibiscus it tastes like a wild spinach (also growing in Dominica) and some basil (tea / pesto / salads etc) In the second picture you see a small paracetamol (tea) and a patchouli oil: an essential oil derived from the leaves of the patchouli plant, a type of aromatic herb. In order to produce patchouli oil, the leaves and stems of the plant are harvested and allowed to dry out. They then undergo a distillation process to extract the essential oil and is used in perfumes, cosmetics, and incense. Tea: hot or cold.
Below our pool deck we made a special “bed” to grow some nice juicy watermelons;
Top 9 health benefits of eating watermelon.
Helps You Hydrate. …
Contains Nutrients and Beneficial Plant Compounds. …
Contains Compounds That May Help Prevent Cancer. …
May Improve Heart Health. …
May Lower Inflammation and Oxidative Stress. …
May Help Prevent Macular Degeneration. …
May Help Relieve Muscle Soreness.
Don’t forget our crispy cucumbers. Its so nice to pick a fresh cucumber for your salads
7 Health Benefits of Eating Cucumber
It’s High in Nutrients. Cucumbers are low in calories but high in many important vitamins and minerals. …
It Contains Antioxidants. …
It Promotes Hydration. …
It May Aid in Weight Loss. …
It May Lower Blood Sugar. …
It Could Promote Regularity. …
Easy to Add to Your Diet.
And what to think about our fresh chives delicious with every salad, on your eggs in the mornings in a salsa. In front of our Garden Rooms you will find some Papaya plants. Deliciously sweet with musky undertones and a soft, butter-like consistency, the papaya was called the “fruit of the angels” by Christopher Columbus. In Dominica we eat the Papaya ripe (orange inside) as sweet fruit or green in a salad or cooked in coconut oil.
Our last plant / tree in the garden is the Moringa. Moringa is believed to have many benefits and its uses range from health and beauty to helping prevent and cure diseases. The benefits of moringa include:
Moringa seed oil is beneficial for protecting hair against free radicals and keeps it clean and healthy.
Moringa appears to protect the liver against damage caused by anti-tubercular drugs and can quicken its repair process.
Moringa extracts might help treat some stomach disorders. Due to its antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties, moringa extracts might combat infections caused by Salmonella, Rhizopus, and E. coli.
Moringa also contains calcium and phosphorous, which help keep bones healthy and strong. The powerful antioxidants found in
Moringa extract might help prevent cardiac damage and has also been shown to maintain a healthy heart.Extract of moringa has been shown to help wounds close as well as reduce the appearance of scars.
Moringa helps to reduce the amount of glucose in the blood, as well as sugar and protein in the urine. This improved the hemoglobin levels and overall protein content in those tested.
And much more but I am sure for those who like more information about the benefits of Moringa will “google” and find the answers.
You don’t need a car, you don’t need a taxi if you like you can start walking from Hotel The Champs. You just walk direction Portsmouth an turn to your right at Borrow Square (“Bus station”) direction 1 mile / Calibishi. This will take you about 30 minutes.
When you turned to you right you keep following the road till you see a construction company on you right hand (you will see materials / cement trucks etc) here you turn to your right into the bush where you see a nice path to walk.
We had sun and rain on our early Sunday morning walk. The rain can be a nice refreshment. The walk is very easy and relaxing. After 25 minutes walking you reach the point where you see the signs of the Waitikubuli trail. We turned because we prefer short hikes on our Sunday mornings. But you can turn to your right at the signs (if you keep going straight it will be a dead ended road.
If you follow the road to your right you will go further up and will reach a nice view point. If you continue you will will end up at Ross Castle Estate in Picard where you will have to cross a (half broken) hanging bridge. Not too sure how long this will take it all depends if you are an experienced hiker.
On our short hike we enjoyed the view over Portsmouth and Cabrits National Park.
If you look well you can even see we had a rainbow on our way back.
Very relaxing walk for a Sunday morning. We, Hans and Lise (Owners of The Champs) like to walk for just an hour before starting our day. We take the car and drive a bit, park the car and start walking. For this walk we parked the car at the home of the elderly on Grange road, Portsmouth. If you like to have a nice and longer walk my advice is to start walking from the Champs. From the Champs to the beginning of Grange road is about 35 – 40 minutes walking, great on a Sunday morning when there is almost no traffic. The walk is not spectacular just relaxing and with some very nice viewpoints over the Portsmouth bay and Cabrits National Park.
In the next pictures you can see Prince Rupert Bay and Pointe Round (direction Roseau)
I have added some screenshots from Maps.me In the first 2 you see where you have to turn into Grange Road (after the market place) and in the last one you see the length of the road. Have fun and enjoy your relaxing walk.
Unlike many Caribbean islands, Dominica is blessed with several lakes, Freshwater Lake is the largest of Dominica’s four lakes. It is located at just over 2,500 ft above sea level and is the natural source of the Roseau River. The lake has been dammed to provide water to generate electricity. This body of water forms part of Morne Trois Pitons National Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s the largest lake on the island, and the second deepest after nearby Boeri Lake. The lake and surrounding area can be mysteriously shrouded in mist or gleaming in full sunshine, often changing between these climates within minutes.
A hike along the Freshwater Lake Trail provides an opportunity to study Dominica’s higher forests. Montane forest, which can be recognized by its short, thin trees and open canopy, covers the majority of the area surrounding the lake. The shallow soils and strong winds do not permit the luxuriant growth that is so characteristic of the rain forest. The Freshwater Lake hike requires a steep climb but the views are worth it. It is a beautiful spot in which to cool off since it’s at a higher elevation.
You have to take your way towards the path by the hydro-electric building (to the right of the parking lot when facing the lake). A few minutes further along, you plant your feet on carefully constructed steps as you make your way to the top of the ridge on the eastern side of the lake. As you make your way along the ridge, you will admire the views of the lake, abundant wildflowers, birds, verdant precipices and the mighty Atlantic in the distance.
The circuitous groomed track around Freshwater Lake takes an hour on average, or a little more if you wish to admire the spectacular views and/or catch your breath!
You can combine this hike with a hike to Boeri Lake or a visit to Middleham Falls to enjoy your day in the nature to the fullest…..