Haiti (Haitian Creole: Ayiti, French: Haïti ) is a Caribbean country on the western half of the island of Hispaniola. Haiti is a country with a troubled past, and its future still remains uncertain. Decades of poverty, environmental degradation, violence, instability, dictatorship and coups, and a devastating earthquake, among other things, have left it the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. Tourists who are unsettled by grinding poverty probably should visit elsewhere. However, for those with patience and an open mind, Haiti reveals a rich culture that is unique among post-colonial nations.