Dominica

Lesser Antilles: Dominica

“Not the Dominican Republic, Dominica,” I corrected my friends for the umpteenth time regarding my upcoming trip. Then again, it was easy to understand how the gaffe had come about. While the former is home to sprawling resorts and package tourism, the latter is a tropical gem in the Lesser Antilles which is a far cry from its similarly-named Caribbean cousin.

Sperm Whales of Dominica

The memory of my first sperm whale encounter is so visceral that I can almost feel myself there again if I close my eyes. As is common to most whale encounters, it wasn’t a particularly long one; the juvenile male merely drifted by slowly, effortlessly, turning on his side so he could stare at me with a tiny little eye before disappearing into the blue.

Three Caribbean Islands: Dominica, St Lucia & St Vincent

Sponges on reef, Dominica. Photo by Steve Jones
Sponges on reef, Dominica. Photo by Steve Jones

It’s not by chance that the producers of the Pirates of the Caribbean series of Hollywood movies chose St Vincent and Dominica as locations. They both offer the rustic charm and unspoiled richness of environment that can, with little effort, take you back hundreds of years.