Dougaldston Estate, Gouyave
Dougaldston Estate is the first stop into Gouyave from the south. It was once one of the largest and most productive cocoa and banana plantations on the island. At Dougaldston, you can still witness the remnants of old slave and laborer barracks that lie in ruins amidst the shadow of the “big house”, commonly called the “great house.”
This, of course, is the name accorded to the former slave master or subsequent estate owner’s house. The plantation itself, though just a shadow of its former self, still operates on a small scale.
Here is a photo of a Cocoa tree with cocoa pods at Dougaldston Estate. This is where your chocolate products really begin.
The processing of cocoa, that prime bean that produces some of the world’s finest chocolate, is the main agricultural activity still evident. Banana trees, once the economic life blood of the plantation, now are few and far between as are nutmeg trees that largely were victim to Hurricane Ivan in 2004.
To the left is a photo of “Drying Cocoa”, an intermediate step before it is exported for manufacturing.
Dougaldston Estate is still an interesting tourist destination as many of the traditional activities are scheduled to accommodate visitors. Make this a quick stop off on your way into Gouyave.