Jacmel, Haiti

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Jacmel, Haiti

Region: Sud-Est Department

Geographic Coordinates: 18.235300, -72.536700
Temperature Range: 20.0°C to 35.0°C (68°F to 95°F)
Climate: Seasonal variations in Jacmel, Haiti’s climate and weather patterns.
Population: 137966
Language: Haitian Creole

Jacmel is a picturesque coastal town situated in the southern part of Haiti. It is famous for its vibrant art scene, Colonial architecture, And stunning beaches, Making it a popular tourist destination. One of the significant attractions in Jacmel is its historic city center. The town was established by French colonizers in the late 17th century, And many buildings still stand from that time period. Visitors can explore narrow streets lined with brightly painted wooden houses, Shop at local markets selling handmade crafts and souvenirs or visit landmarks like the Cathedral Notre-Dame de l’Assomption.

Jacmel has an artistic heritage that draws visitors to view Haitian art displayed at local galleries or sold on the streets by artisans from all over Haiti. The artwork ranges from traditional paintings to contemporary sculptures made from recycled materials. For nature enthusiasts, Jacmel offers various outdoor activities such as hiking, Swimming and snorkeling opportunities. Tourists flock to Bassin Bleu waterfall nearby to swim in crystal-clear waters surrounded by lush greenery. The annual Carnival de Jacmel is another major attraction that takes place every February before Lent begins.

This colorful festival features lively parades with music, Dance performances and street vendors selling food and drinks. Despite facing natural disasters like hurricanes and earthquakes over recent years, Jacmel has maintained its unique charm thanks to the resilience of its people who continue to welcome visitors warmly. Overall Jacmel offers an unforgettable experience combining history, Artistry culture , And natural beauty making it one of Haiti’s most alluring destinations worth exploring!

Important Landmarks

  1. Jacmel Beach
  2. Bassin Bleu Waterfall
  3. Jacmel Cathedral
  4. Place Toussaint Louverture
  5. La Coquille Park and Gardens
  6. Iron Market (Marché en Fer)
  7. Fort Ogé Museum and Memorial Park
  8. The Art Center of Jacmel (Centre d’Art de Jacmel)
  9. Cap Lamandou Hotel and Resort
  10. The Carnival of Jacmel (held annually in February)

Primary Industries

  1. Tourism
    • Significant industry in Jacmel
    • Due to historic architecture and cultural festivals
  2. Handicrafts
    • Popular among tourists
    • Includes pottery, woodcarving, and metalwork
  3. Agriculture
    • Important industry
    • Crops produced include coffee, cocoa beans, and mangoes
  4. Fishing
    • Major source of income for local population
    • Fish caught from the Caribbean Sea
  5. Small-scale manufacturing
    • Includes textiles and clothing production
    • Food processing industries such as sugar refining and rum production

Noteable History

  1. The city was founded in 1698 by French colonists.
  2. Jacmel played a significant role in the Haitian Revolution (1791-1804) against French colonial rule.
  3. The city was a major center for coffee and sugar production during the 19th century.
  4. Notable Haitian leaders who were born or lived in Jacmel include Jean-Jacques Dessalines, Alexandre Pétion, and Antoine Simon.
  5. During the American occupation of Haiti (1915-1934), Jacmel served as a base for U.S. Marines.
  6. The city is known for its vibrant arts scene, particularly its Carnival celebrations and papier-mâché masks made by local artisans.
  7. In 2010, Jacmel was severely impacted by the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti, resulting in widespread destruction and loss of life.
  8. Notable landmarks in Jacmel include the historic town center with its colonial architecture, the Bassin-Bleu waterfall, and several beaches along the southern coast of Haiti near Jacmel Bay.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Jacmel Art Center is a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts as it features the works of local artists and artisans.
  2. Bassin Bleu is a stunning natural attraction that boasts crystal clear blue water surrounded by lush greenery, perfect for swimming, hiking, and picnicking.
  3. Marche de Fer (Iron Market) is a bustling market filled with vendors selling fresh produce to handmade crafts.
  4. Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption is an exquisite cathedral built in the 19th century that showcases intricate architecture and stained glass windows.
  5. Fort Ogé played an essential role in Haiti’s fight for independence from France and serves as an important historical landmark.
  6. La Colline Enchantée (The Enchanted Hill) offers breathtaking views of Jacmel Bay and the surrounding mountains from its beautiful hilltop park.
  7. Musée d’Art Haïtien du Collège Saint-Pierre houses an impressive collection of Haitian art, including paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts.
  8. Place Toussaint Louverture located in the heart of Jacmel honors Toussaint Louverture, a key figure in Haiti’s fight for independence through its public square.
  9. Parc Historique de la Canne à Sucre is an open-air museum featuring exhibits, artifacts, and demonstrations showcasing Haiti’s history of sugar cane production.
  10. Maison Cadet was once a restored 18th-century mansion now serving as a cultural center featuring exhibitions on Haitian history & culture along with live performances by local musicians & dancers.

Cultural Events

  1. Carnival of Jacmel – This is one of the most famous cultural events in Jacmel that takes place every year before Lent. It features music, dancing, colorful costumes, and parades.
  2. Fête Champêtre – This festival celebrates rural life and agriculture with traditional music, dance performances, food fairs, and agricultural exhibitions.
  3. Festival Film Jakmèl – This annual film festival showcases Haitian cinema and international films in different venues around Jacmel.
  4. Artisanal Fair – This fair brings together local artisans who showcase their crafts including pottery, paintings, sculptures, jewelry making among others.
  5. Saint-Jacques Day Celebration – Every July 25th the town celebrates its patron saint with a religious procession followed by cultural activities such as music performances and street parties.
  6. Independence Day Celebration – On January 1st each year the country celebrates its independence from France with parades, fireworks displays, and other festivities that take place throughout the city.
  7. La Fête de la Mer (Sea Festival) – Held annually on August 15th this event celebrates Haiti’s connection to the sea with seafood dishes served at local restaurants along with live music performances on beaches around Jacmel coastline.


  • Le Lamantin – a seafood restaurant with a beautiful ocean view.
  • La Coquille – a French restaurant known for its delicious crepes and pastries.
  • Ti Mouillage – a beachfront restaurant that serves fresh seafood and Haitian dishes.
  • Chez Raymond – a local favorite for traditional Haitian food such as griot (fried pork) and rice and beans.
  • Le Jardin de la Paix – a garden restaurant that offers vegetarian options, live music, and an art gallery.
  • La Kay Restaurant – another popular spot for Haitian cuisine, including fried plantains, conch stew, and goat meat dishes.
  • Cafe Koze – an artsy cafe that serves coffee, smoothies, sandwiches, and salads made from locally sourced ingredients.
  • Le P’tit Creux de Jacmel – a cozy bakery that sells fresh breads, pastries, quiches pizzas sandwiches,and other snacks to go or eat on site with coffee or juice.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Parc de la Liberté
    2. Bassin Bleu Waterfall
    3. Fort Ogé National Historic Park
    4. La Vallée-de-Jacmel Nature Reserve
    5. Jacmel Beaches (Kabic, Raymond les Bains, Ti Mouillage)
    6. Place Toussaint Louverture (public square)
    7. Maison Georges Anglade Cultural Center
    8. Kay Piat Art Gallery
    9. Jacmel Carnival (annual event)
    10. Ecole de Musique Dessaix Baptiste (music school)


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