Photo essay: Rowing up the Indian River in Dominica

The Indian River is the widest river in Dominica and flows inland into the Caribbean Sea.

And if you want a relaxing afternoon floating down underneath a jungle canopy, then the Indian River in Dominica is just the place to go.

Our tour guide – Fire

Our tour guide Fire greeted us warmly and was all smiles. Just look at his face below – have you ever seen a friendlier grin?

Fire rowing us down the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Fire gave me and my mum gifts made out of leaves by the local women . I loved mine and still have it.

Trinket gift given on the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Chilling out

Our relaxing journey begun – the Indian River was dead still and peaceful. We could take in the view of a few local fishing boats as Fire rowed us up stream.

Boat on the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Sailing down the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Fire waved to his mates as he passed them but before long we’d entered the mangroves and had the Indian River to ourselves.

Rowing down the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

The scenic beauty

Palm trees hung down over the Indian River, creating a canopy. It was both creepy and beautiful at the same time.

My mum remarked that it felt like a Disney film set, as though all the trees had been perfectly placed – yet it was real life.

Trees over the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

I loved the way the light shone through the trees, creating the dappled light below.

Trees dappled light Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Nature on the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Pirates of the Caribbean

But the Indian River in Dominica had been a Disney film set – for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.  The witch’s hut was built deep in the jungle alongside the Indian River.

It was a fitting location for the set and the atmosphere was further enhanced by the designers placing smoke machines and candles along the river banks to create a haunted feel.

The film crew dismantled the hut before they left but a rich Russian man built a replica for his grandson’s birthday and that still stands today.

Pirates of the Caribbean Witches hut Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

The Indian River shore

Every now and then we’d come across a patch of sand along the shore and see freshwater crabs scurrying away from the boat.

Palm tree Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

About 30 minutes into the journey we docked at a rum bar and had some strong rum punches to get us into the pirate spirit.

We timed it well – as we left the boat it began to belt with rain and we could shelter underneath the bar, warming our stomachs with rum.

Boat at jetty Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

Rum bar on Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

The end of the tour

The rain soon died down and we took the opportunity to sail back up the river before bidding goodbye to Fire.

Fire in his boat the Indian River Dominica Double-Barrelled Travel

What you need to know:

How to get there: The mouth of the river is just south of Portsmouth and is where the tours leave from.

Cost: Between US$15 – US$25 per person – some guides take you for a short walk through a neighbouring plantation, which costs the extra. (We didn’t do this.)

When to go: The Indian River tours operate seven days a week and if there isn’t a cruise ship in town you can probably just turn up without booking. Ask for Fire! If you’d like to book beforehand, you can call Fire on 767-614-0002. You can also contact the Dominica Department of Tourism or Cobra Tours for other tour options.

The Tourism Department of Dominica gave us complimentary tickets for the Indian River tour but, as always, our opinions are our own.

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About the author

Carmen has been nomadic since May 2013 and the co-founder of Double-Barrelled Travel. She loves experiencing new cultures and learning new languages. She is having the most fun when skiing down a mountain, scuba diving in the Caribbean or curled up with a good book.

8 comments on “Photo essay: Rowing up the Indian River in Dominica”

  1. Pingback: Naked Eye Travel » Blog – My favourite travel stories of the week

  2. Discovery Reply

    I organize private packages to Dominica, Thank you for these nice pictures and this free promotion to Dominica. Everyword make it amazing for nature lovers!

  3. Pingback: Dominica, the stunning Nature Island, on a budget: Tips and advice - Price of Travel

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