The Houses Of Ile-a-Vache

Ile-a-Vache House 4We had camera gear, water, trail mix and the vernal goal of walking several trails across Ile-a-Vache, but on this particular day we only wanted to conquer three trails.  The ultimate goal was to photograph the neat Haitian houses of Ile-a-Vache.  We marched up the mountain at a chelonian pace following the Odakacheman Trail.  The Haitian people are proud, but private tribes.  In many cases I would have to approach the doyenne of the house to politely request permission to photograph at will.  Only on one occasion was I refused this privilege.  A respectful approach and a ready smile was the only solatium needed.

–  The Odokacheman Trail

–  The Caye Coq (kay kok) Trail

–  The Port Morgan Trail

As we walked to a higher elevation on the trail more houses could be viewed up ahead.  Each house snuggled neatly amidst a tropical boscage.  I wish my friend Joan Medlicott was here.  She has an encyclopedic knowledge of all Caribbean plants.   There were many plants and flowers I had never seen before.  Most houses had a garden or yard area growing various fruits and vegetables.  Each property displayed some measure of organization in addition to being fenced and pleasantly painted.  This is a different Haiti here on the island.  The people appear to be happy and very healthy.  Here the homes are 100% paid for with no mortgage, no parasitic banks or property taxes.  The food each house produces, though modest in quantity, is high in organic quality and has not been poisoned by chemical farming. Walking about on Ile-a-Vache was an enjoyable outing.  We kept a weather eye on the sky, but there was no sign of rain clouds and due to the absence of wide roads, obtaining shade was never a problem.  (All photos on this site are copyrighted)



  1. Reba s/v White Rabbit says:

    I think these houses are absolutely precious. Ocean Trader should publish the full gallery of all the homes photographed. Very simple and beautiful photos. A nice contrast to those that have made a business out of the helplessness of Haiti. If there were roads the UN trucks and blue helmeted clones would have already despoiled the island with their presence.

  2. This looks like a part of Haiti the UN neglected to infest with their trucks, weapons and BS! These photos are terrific. I must go to that island and see this for myself before the golf course and condominiums begin to pop-up like an incurable rash.

  3. V. Greaux says:

    My family weighed anchor in the Baie A Feret last May after a two week visit to this quiet island in Southern Haiti. We did have plenty of opportunities to walk about the island. Everyone was hospitable and friendly. We only made one trip to the Mainland to attend to Customs and immigration and buy a few groceries. We sailed towards the Windwrd Passage and the the lower Bahamian islands with a good turn of weather. We could clearly see the deterioration of the clean air to the South as we left PAP and central Haiti to starboard. We left Haiti optimistic that the hordes of yachts will opt-out of attempting a passage to Haiti in favor of Caribbean “safe havens”.

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