Gonaives is a decent little city with a population of about 100,000. The city is historically important as it is the spot where Haiti's independence was declared by Dessalines in 1804. Gonaives is kind of a charmeless city in the country. The landscape is sprawling, but flat and dusty. It lies beside brackish beaches and much of the municipal architecture is modern, with little character.
With all of that said, Gonaives is a handy little town, being it is just about the half-way point between Port au Prince and Cap-Haitien. It is a great place to break your journey between the two cities, if going overland. There are some things to see in this town. There is a beautiful cathedral, and a historic monument, closeby the cathedral.
It is probably best to avoid the beaches near Gonaives. The US city of Philadelphia reportedly buried toxic ash beneath them in 1988.
There are a couple of hotels in Gonaives that are worth mentioning. First being the, Family Hotel and the other the Chez Frantz hotel, both are located on the main street, Avenue des Dattes.
street in town
near center of town
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