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A Third Visit to Suriname

By Mieke Koenraadt — last modified Jun 14, 2013 11:05 AM

Published: 2012-06-12 10:45:00
Countries: Suriname

Mieke sent a report to Noonsite in 2006 about Suriname. She then sent updates in 2009, and now again in May 2012. Read her latest report below.

May 24, 2012

As I am visiting Suriname again, here is some latest news. My previous report on Suriname from Nov. 2009 is still very accurate, however I am passing on some extra information as well from my latest visit (May/June 2012).

Overview

Suriname is a fantastic and safe country to visit, by yacht or otherwise. Suriname is part of the Caricom and one of the three Guyana's in the north part of South America. Coming from Europe or Brazil, Suriname is a good choice to stop before going further to other parts of the Caribbean. It is also a perfect alternative during the hurricane season in the Caribbean being 6 N and 55W .

The people of Suriname are very friendly and make you feel at home. With some 10 nationalities living together, it is a special country to visit. They were multi-cultural before the term got invented. The population consists of Amerindians , Maroons, Indians, Creoles, Indonesians, Dutch, Lebanese, a Jewish community and Chinese. Dutch and Sranang Tongo (a mixed language of all) is mostly spoken next to their own respective native languages. English is well understood everywhere. You get overwhelmed by the locals' charm and hospitality!

Their cuisine is an outstanding unique one. Local produce is very good with lots of fruit and vegetables excellent butcher shops, and good supermarkets. Not being spoilt by mass tourism and embracing eco tourism makes Suriname so special to visit.

Arrival in Suriname

Enter Suriname through the Suriname river, preferably when the tide comes in. It is well buoyed. Entering the Suriname river is still best entered by daylight, as there are many coloured lights in the distance which can easily get confused with the buoys. You can safely anchor in the river mouth out of the shipping lane, and wait till daylight.

Approx. 8 miles in you pass Paramaribo (capital city). Contact MAS (Maritime Authority Suriname), channel 12 or 16 and let them know of your arrival. You can stop at Paramaribo at the Torarica Hotel, however the holding is poor (use all the chain you have) and be sure to always have someone on watch when going to town. The best option is to go further up to Domburg, as there are no moorings anymore in Paramaribo and Domburg is much safer. Pass the bridge and 8 miles further you reach Domburg.

DOMBURG

Most yachts come together here and are welcome to stay. A beautiful spot surrounded by nature. Upon arrival in Domburg you can get all the info. you need from the contact person there.

Domburg Clearance

Visa applications can be done after arrival, there is no need for yachts to obtain a visa in advance. These are now much quicker to obtain due to new management. Visa office (corner Lim A Po/Watermolen street).

Foreign police (vreemdelingen politie)- (Jaggernath Lachmon street #167).

Both are to be visited, with your crew list (and all crew) after arrival, to obtain the necessary documents. All info. on this is available in Domburg.

Domburg Facilities

Domburg has most facilities such as:
- Local bus to town (30 min), taxi, police office, medical clinic, barber, post office/internet.
- 3 smaller grocery stores with fresh produce, a vegetable market, butcher shop and RBTT bank.
- Several small cosy bar/restaurants where one will have a great time meeting each other.
- Digicell and others provide an easy mobile system while in Suriname. Digicell is advised as they all over the Caribbean as well. In Domburg paid WIFI is available from your boat.
- Water, Fuel, Repairs, Laundry, Haul out, all available through the contact person at Domburg.

A renovation of Domburg waterfront is making the place much nicer than it already is. A new dingy dock is included, and a landing bridge for bigger boats.

In Paramaribo there is a central market with all fruits and vegetables you need. And also bigger supermarkets which are very well stocked and good butcher shops with very good provisions.

Attractions

One is safe and free to go anywhere. The capital city Paramaribo is considered a jewel of Caribbean architecture as the old plantation houses and historic centre of town were placed on the Unesco World Heritage list in 2002, and much is renovated since then. The unspoiled nature in the interior is spectacular and overwhelming in diversity and in a balanced eco system.

Trips can be made to visit up country for several days, with organised tours, to meet the Maroons and Amerindians in their respective villages. A great experience. A few of the rivers are deep enough to visit the interior by yacht. Birds in many varieties are seen and heard everywhere. Dolphins greet you at the river mouth and there is plenty of fish to eat as well.

Tourists have it even better now as the roads are now well tarred to a great distance inland.

Tourist information at Waterkant #1. Several websites do exist from tour operators.

If this becomes your choice of next destination sooner or later, be assured you will have a very good time. We have visited Suriname several times.

To all who are interested, any questions about Suriname, please feel free to mail me, mcakoenraadt@planet.nl.

Mieke Koenraadt
www.visitsurinameonline.com

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marjam
marjam says:
Jan 23, 2014 12:09 PM

This report is outdated please read the latest report on Suriname , as many new changes have been made to the improvement of all.