Dominican Republic Destinations
Dominican Republic Overview
Love with plenty of Latin flair is in the air in the Dominican Republic. It is full of warm hospitality and spark, the grace of days gone by and the sophisticated vivacity of the 21st century—all cloaked in plenty of Spanish charm.
Lovers can enjoy everything from pines to palm trees. The island of Hispaniola which it shares with Haiti, is ringed with pristine beaches and clear aquamarine waters. The cool Dominican “Alps,” covered with shady pines and cool breezes, nestle in the center around Jarabacoa and Constanza. Legendary resort towns such as Barahona, La Romana, Punta Cana, Cap Cana, Samana, Puerto Plata and others dot the majestic coastline, offering plenty of tropical fun in the sun.
On this island, you can do anything from river rafting to mountain biking; trace the paths of colonial history (downtown Santo Domingo is a World Heritage site), go whale watching or scuba diving, shop for chic resortwear and accessories or decorative items for your new home, get out into a countryside nature preserve or dine and dance in ultra modern restaurants and clubs. This is an island where romantic memories can be made around every corner!
- SANTO DOMINGO: This is the island where Christopher Columbus first landed. Stroll the romantic cobble stone streets, visit the Mercado Modelo handicrafts market, dine in a romantic restaurant, and walk the paths of history. UNESCO has declared the colonial area a World Heritage site!
- PLAY GOLF on one of the spectacular championship courses. Most have plenty of breathtaking water views. Punta Cana, Casa de Campo and others are world renowned.
- DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY: Dominicans love to dance and you will too. There’s music everywhere and you can usually dance almost anywhere. Upscale clubs as well as small cafes and restaurants have dancing areas. Try the lively, sexy meringue. The rhythm will make you fall even more in love!
- GET INTO NATURE: There are nature preserves and national parks throughout the island.
- GO SHOPPING: Domincan handicrafts are both sophisticated and primitive. Places like Altos de Chavon in La Romana, Mercado Modelo in Santo Domingo, and other shops throughout the country carry beautiful decorative items and furniture for your new home as well as resort wear and jewelry with international flair. This is one of the few places in the world where amber and larimar (a blue stone) are found!
- TRY YOUR LUCK any weekend at a glittering casino in Santo Domingo.
Tips and Advice
- AREA CODE: 809
- CAPITAL: Santo Domingo
- WEATHER: The average annual temperature is 77 degrees F. Dec.-March are the coolest months. Temperatures range between 75-90 degrees F.
- LANGUAGE: The official language is Spanish but English is spoken in resort areas.
- ELECTRICITY: 100 V, same as the USA
- TAXES: Visitors must purchase a Tourist Card for $10 US upon arrival. There is also a 10% Departure Tax.. There is a 22% tax (12% Sales Tax and 10% Service Charge) on room rates.
- GETTING THERE: The Dominican Republic has 7 international airports. Choose the one that is closest to your destination, or plan to spend a few days in Santo Domingo, then take a leisurely flight or drive to your resort destination. Flights from NYC are about 4 hours, from LA 11.25 hours and from Chicago 7.25 hours.
- TIPPING: A 10% service charge is added to restaurant bills. Most diners leave an additional 10% tip.
- Siestas are a custom. Many shops and businesses close from 12:30-2:00 p.m.
- Meal times are late. Prime time in restaurants is 9:00 p.m. and you can usually find somewhere to dance till dawn.