I’ve read quite a few great comments about this tour company and wondering if anyone can comment on any of the shopping tours they have available and if they are worth taking or is it just best to take a taxi and bargain for 1/2 day with them to Puerto Plata, Sosua shopping trip. I’m always a little nervous to venture on our own.
you can take a planned shopping trip or arrange something on your own with martin… he is great and so are the people in his company
I could not agree more with suefromns, it is a great company. They are very knowledgable and friendly, and will take you anywhere you would like to go. They will also take you on a private excursion, and it is very personalized. A full day for 3 adults was $120.00US plus the tip, and we went several places with ample opportunity to shop. I would not hesitate to use them again.
Thanks for the info. I’ll certainly pay them a visit and see what they offer.
arlauski : Did they wait for you everywhere you visited ?
Martin or his driver will take you where you want and wait while you shop, their priority is keeping you happy. Wonderful friendly man, he has also adjusted his trips to suit my requirements in the past so feel free to ask for what YOU want to do and he will make the tour fit your needs.
Cheers Amandalou :-*
January 2007, we took the day excursion/shopping venture to Santiago with Martin Espinal’s Isaira Tours. Our driver/guide stayed with us all day, even carrying our purchases for us. He was translator, historian, weather guide, shopping expert & money exchanger. When Martin phoned us the day after our excursion, we gave a glowing report on our driver Juan…without his help, we could have been in a bad spot.
We used the services of Isaira Tours again this year when we stayed at the Iberostar CD. A very professional company, well thought of, courteous & punctual. Would we use them again?..YES
Just a few more questions about booking the tour. If we book a tour through them more or less personalized (not from their listed tours), will they specify the day or would I choose the day they take us. Also where are they located from Grand Oasis Marien ?
You should be able to pick your day, within the limits of other prior bookings and available drivers/vehicles. I was at his office last year and it’s not very far from your hotel. Not that it matters; he’ll pick you up at the Marien.
Thanks Bob. That’s great that they will pick us up at the Resort. I was thinking of walking over to actually book our tour or should I be calling them ?
Martin & staff is absolutely the best & will take you on a package tour or a tour by your design.
He will gladly accommodate you on your choice of day or maybe if he has a small family with similar choices & ask if the two groups could go same day & make the tour even more reasonably priced.
This would only happen if both agreed upon & makes for a great day travelling with new found friends.
They will wait for you & take you wherever you desire. Wait for as little or long as you desire.
We even had a hard time getting the driver to join us for lunch & refreshments. They will “NOT” drink a beer or otherwise while you are in their care.
You will have a great trip with no worries.
Sunseeker, we booked our tour with Martin’s company via e-mail before we even left Canada (I assume he still has a website). We picked the day before we left, then he called the day after we had arrived in the DR to see if the day we chose still suited us.
We had a great day with one of his drivers, Enrique. The best part from our perspective was that we could customize it to fit our interests. While we asked for a basic tour of Puerto Plata – including the amber museum, fort, etc. – we had NO interest in seeing the rum factory so we just asked to skip that. Later we had lunch and snorkeled and shopped for souvenirs in Sosua while he waited for us. It was a fantastic day.
is the office (isaira tours) located in the playa dorada complex? If not how far outside the complex is it?
[quote=@linric]is the office (isaira tours) located in the playa dorada complex? If not how far outside the complex is it?
No, it’s across the street and down a bit, closer to Costa Dorada.
MRA, you’ve piqued my curiosity. ???
Could you elaborate on this? I ask because I’ve considered a trip to Santiago myself.
Did you notice any bookstores with English books?
hi Tom…while we were in Santiago, we decided to purchase our “take home” rum & other liquor at the Supermarcado. We chose what we wanted, went to the cash register to check out & after our stuff being rung in, we find out that they DO NOT accept US$$…ouch!! Our driver, Juan was very helpful in that he calculated how much money we needed to exchange for RD$$ & he went to the front of the line in the Western Union kiosk at the store. Needless to say, we were quite embarassed !!
The trip to Santiago is very eye opening…especially going the ‘mountain’ road. We visited a proper cigar factory, the Monument of Heros, a ceramics factory & found an enjoyable place for lunch just below the monument. Can’t remember seeing bookstores, but I would imagine that there would be some.
When away from the tourist areas and in the interior of the country, $RD is the currency to use, places like Tamboril, Moca, Santiago, Higuey are not tourist oriented towns.
were you on a tour of santiago? if so what resort where you at and any datails for the tour would be great …price etc. we are looking for a tour thats a bit more sight seeing and history as we have done all the jungle safari and tour of p.p.
sorry just read a bit more from above
i guess my ? is price? and was it a group tour or indv. one?
This is pretty much what we are interested in doing for a tour. A basic visit of PP, places of interest, perhaps a few shops and then off to Sosua for some snorkling and shopping. I’ve read about a store in Puerto Plata that sell Jeans for a good price.
I thought about emailing off of the website to request this tour and see what he could offer and a price quote. Not sure how early I could send him a message. Do you pay online or only the day of tour ?
We booked it online (via e-mail, actually) but paid the driver the day of the tour. This was about three years ago, so things may have changed. But probably not. I wouldn’t pre-pay for something like that.
shaunandeb…our trip/tour to Santiago was an individual tour. We left Gran Ventana about 9am & returned about 6pm…I think it cost $100US incl tip for the 2 of us. (Isaira Tours web site says $45ea). It was a very informative trip!!