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Traveling from USA to Dominican Republic, few usef

;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D
Think about it, thats the easiest way to be happy. Lets talk about your luggage first.
The most important things are:
-Tanner (definitely needed)
-Fins, masks, diver certificate
-GPS Navigator
-Photo/Video camera + SD cards, replaceable accumulators
-Aquapack `and for phones, cameras and instruments that are not soaked in the sea)
-Your medicine kit (if you are an allergic person) with antibiotic or indigestion tablets
-Mosquito-repellent (not everywhere, but you may need it in case of “wild trips”)
Really, you can buy it Dominicana, but my wife, for example, she likes to travel with her own bed-clothes…

A few useful tips below.
[B]Step 1.[/B] First of all, you need to buy tickets… Using Expedia I found 270 dollars tickets of “America Airlines” from Miami to Santo Domingo (capital of Dominican Republic).

[B]Step 2.[/B] Then you should purchase some gps-navigator, like Garmin for example (so we did). Its better to buy a navigator than using dominican guide services, and its cheaper, guys! Then you search in Google for GPS Garmin map of Dominican Republic ([URL]http://dominicana.cc/[/URL] was our choice), and download the map…
Iam finding the price a little bit higher than expected (87 dollars), but the quality of this gps map is really nice. Look here, I made a few screenshot-fotos (Iam not a professional, sorry):

Also they offer free to download GPS Garmin tracks, which guide you to dominican waterfalls, Constanza city, Enriquillo lake with crocodiles or what you want :wink:
And you can send them your own track with description. We wanted to do it, but I could not turn on the track function in my garmin device.

The guy which sold me the Garmin map, told that they are going to release Windows mobile/Android/Symbian/BlackBerry/IPhone compatible dominican maps. But I had no time to wait, that`s why I bought a Garmin device! confused

[B]Step 3.[/B] Now you are in Dominican Republic! Start explorering this beautiful island.

[B]TIPS[/B]1. Its not necessary to rent a house for a long time, really, when we came to Dominican Republic I ordered an hotel for one week (you know, acclimatization and relax). 2. Dominican “rentacar”. You need to pay attention, cause most of them dont have a car-insurance (!!!). The best choice are european rentacars like AVIS or EuropCar or something else. If not – you need to check all the details (oil, brakes, engine, transmission) and do a trial ride.

If you are planning a lot of traveling – jeep like Montero Sport – is for you. We rent it from owner for 1 month, the cost was 40 dollars daily. Excuse me, I don`t remember the tel. of that guy…

  1. Dominican republic has lot of small cute motels named “cabanas” all over the country. The estimated price is 20-30 dollars per night, with your own closed parking place, clean room, hot water, sometimes it`s equipped with a big plasma TV (sure is chinese) and always has good air-conditioning. Usually they have a snack-bar with dominican “pica-pollo” (KFC) and cold beer.
    So, you will not spend lot of money traveling to Republica Dominicana. I wanted to give you a little bit more of useful information.
  2. Dominican currency is Dominican peso (RD $). Flights, tours and taxis – it`s better to pay in dollars, everything else - in pesos. :smiley:

1 US$ = approx. 37 pesos
Gas – 187/gallon Premium Class
Cigarettes – 100 pesos for package (20)
Beer – 60 pesos (1 liter)
Bottle of water – 10 pesos (0.5 liter)
Pineapple – 50 pesos
Coconut – 25 pesos
Watermelon – 150 pesos
Meat – 150 pesos/lb
We made a lot of BBQ in Barahona beach…

Who told I`am a vegetarian?

Lobster – 190 pesos/lb

Chief cooking his special daily menu with white wine sauce and a little bit of lemon juice. The price is about 7 dollars for one “langostino” with boiled “yuca” (it`s a kind of a plant root), potatoes or pan-tree.

Lobster-parties in Punta Cana.

Some guy selling “langosta”.

Shrimps – 180 pesos/lb. Fresh shrimps can be found only in a peninsula Samana region.

Sea crab (centolla in dominican language) – 130 pesos/lb
3 foot barracuda – 1000 pesos
Dinner in a good restaurant – 150 pesos/person
Dinner in a luxe restaurant – 500 pesos/person
Taxi (we don`t use taxi, but if somebody needs) – 200 dollars from Santo Domingo to Samana, 200 dollars from Punta Cana to Santo Domingo, 500 dollars from Punta Cana to Puerto Plata.

Rent 2-motor`150 fishing boat – 150 dollars for two persons, 4-5 hours of fishing.

Yeah, it was the biggest marlin I ever seen, but it was not mine ;).

My first dominican dorado. Tasty as a Floridian dorado!

[B]People in Republica Dominicana[/B]
This old man is 98 y.o, he has 12 children, ultimate one is 14 y.o (!!!). In this foto he is smoking tobacco inside the orange tree leaf.

Dominicans, like all Latin American people – are very happy, they don`t know nothing about aggression.

The best place to sit during “siesta” is a plastic chair, I think is a dominican symbol – sitting near “lying policeman” and looking “full HD video”.

[B]During 2 months we had:[/B]

  1. One day I found something like a spear in a beach. Probably somebody of dominican fishermen forgot it there.

My extraction in 2 hours =) Prepared with “green jalapeno” sauce and a bit of lemon. If you don`t want to waste your time huntering, you buy it for 200 pesos (6 $US)/dozen. Lot of “motoconches” (moto-taxists) are ready to sell it for you.

  1. We`ve visited Altos de Chavon, small city constructed in a colonial style. Very beautiful place with its greek style amphitheater wih 5 thousand seats (sponsored by Frank Sinatra), Taino Indians archaeological museum and “Chavon Art School” for young painters. Every student must present one of his works to the Public Gallery when leaving the city.
    In this photo: Saint Stanislav’s church. Many Americans celebrate their wedding in this church.
    We paid 25 $US for the city entrance ticket.

  2. Lot of sunshine-beer parties in a beach.

  3. Whale-watching in Samana peninsula. Sometimes you don’t find the whale during 1 or 2 hours, but then…Wow!
    I dont understand why dont they use echo-sounders??

The cost was only 50 dollars/person, 3 hours of journey with disembarkation on “Cayo Levantado island”. 1 hour for drink and eat, low prices quality seafood.

Its a great spectacle looking to this giant animals (Its not a fish!) with their babies. Dancing, jumping (its safety, dont be afraid).

  1. Waterfall near El Limon city (45 minutes from Las Terrenas). You can reach this waterfall only on a horse (10 dollars by one), because the road is dirty and difficult to go by foot. Special educated children are guiding your horse and showing tropical fruits (like mango, pineapple or avocado) you pay them some tips then (usually nearby 10 dollars).
    People say, that every person bathed in “El Limon” becomes a millionaire.

El Limon waterfall has 3 stages. One of them in this photo:

Don`t forget about dominican “siesta”, when all the shops are closed (except hotel gift shops): from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. I think some restaurants are closed too =)

[B]Obligatory to take away from Dominican republic:[/B]

  • Cigars
  • Rum (Haitian Barbancourt, Dominican Barcelo Imperial, Brugal)

Note: As you remember, “Barbancourt” factory was destroyed during the powerful earthquake in Haiti, so thats the ultimate opportunity to buy it. Its really tasty! I have never tried anything similar in my life.

  • Cocoa. In the cold winter, sawing off small slices and putting them in a coffee grinder, it will be pleasant to remember of Caribbean Islands breezes.

  • Flavorous dominican coffee, except “Santo Domingo Cafe” (its taste seemed to me bitter)

  • Haitian pictures, don`t pay more than 20 $US for each (!!!)

  • Fresh mangoes,

  • “Noni” juice. Noni its a powerful stimulator for all human body. Dominicans call it Viagra or “killer of 101 disease”. Dont buy it in a pharmacy! This noni juice will contain antioxidants, which damage the significant of this product. It`s better to ask dominicans, they always have.

  • Blue amber, which can be found near Santiago (I don` remember the city). 700 pesos for this perfect piece of amber.

[B]Small info about Dominican Republic.[/B]

Capital: Santo Domingo
Language: Dominican (seems to be Spanish)
Average annual air temperature: 28 S. Average water temperature: 28 'C in summer and in winter is 25S.
Climate: Tropical
Territory: 48 730 sq. km
Religion: Catholicism
Population: ~12 million of people

Sincerely yours, Yan and Mary.
P.S. Excuse me of my English, I am from Czech Republic. Happy travel!!! =)

awesome post, great,

Thanx =)

great photos I enjoyed looking at them… :smiley:

Thanks Yan y Mary.

Thanks!! I think I will make one more post, but a little bit later)))