Pétionville, Haiti

Pétionville is a suburb of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Founded in 1831 by then president Jean-Pierre Boyer, it was named after Alexandre Sabès Pétion (1770–1818), the Haitian general and president later recognized as one of the country's four founding fathers.

During our time in Pétionville, we stayed at the beautiful Hotel Kinam, a modern boutique hotel equipped with shops, great restaurants, a heavenly backyard, and one of the best views of the beautifully colored Jalousie neighborhood.

art for sale on the sidewalk in front of Hotel Kinam

Because Haiti doesn't have transportation infrastructure (i.e. buses, trains, etc), Tap Taps are independently-owned trucks and vans which residents use to get to their destinations. Each Tap-Tap operates more like a bus, with a redetermined route and patrons hop on and off as they feel. If you've ever ridden a Dollar Van in NYC then you already get the gist.
The Globe Unity Sculpture in Port-au-Prince, Haiti
 While in Pétionville, we took a day trip to Port-au-Prince and visited Ecole Nouvelle Zoranje (one of three schools operated by PRODEV, an non-profit organization which hopes to change the future of Haiti through education), the Iron Market (the best souvenir bazaar ever), and the Musée du Panthéon National Haïtien (MUPANAH), a museum and cultural center which features the story of the heroes of Haitian Independence. The museum traces the history of the Taínos, has a section dedicated to the heroes of independence including the silver gun with which Henri Christophe committed suicide and the bell used to announce the independence. It also contains chains of slavery, torture instruments, sculptures and temporary exhibitions of paintings. Also, the anchor of Christopher Columbus' Santa Maria is displayed there.

stolen from Snapchat :) it was fun hanging with the kiddies for a few.
rooftop sculpture water garden at MUPANAH

the anchor of the Santa Maria
model of the type of slave ship used to transport slaves from Africa to Saint Domingue, the colony that became Haiti
Les Jardins du MUPANAH (translation: The Gardens of MUPANAH), the museum cafe/bar
Marché en Fer (translation: The Iron Market)
a couple of souvenirs
One (of many) divinely amazing things I experienced while in Pétionville was djon djon chicken. Anyone who is familiar with Haitian cuisine, has heard (and, hopefully, tasted) the delicious du riz djon djon (or 'black mushroom rice' in english). It's a popular Haitian dish that uses Djon Djon, a type of mushroom that is only found in the mountains of Haiti. While I have had the pleasure of eating the rice my whole life, I was completely caught unawares to find out that the mushroom is also used to make chicken on the island! And, man-oh-man, was it delicious! I've been looking for recipes ever since. I have got to recreate this magic!

Dinner at Hotel Kinam. from L to R: djon djon chicken, roll, avocado salad, tasso kabrit (fried goat), banan peze (fried green plantain), rice 
dinner at Magdoo's, a Lebanese restaurant in Port-au-Prince. photo by: Miss Jetsetter
I really adored my time in Pétionville and I can't wait to go back. It's a beautiful and vibrant city with so much to do and experience. You can easily access so much art, culture, and history. I can't wait to go back next January!

Next week, we'll dive into my time at Côte des Arcadins! Stay tuned :)


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