Dominican Republic for Beginners

8 days / 7 nights Dominican Republic Tour

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Philip Bresinsky

Head Product & Travel Design DR

+1 809 686 02 78

Dominican Republic for Beginners

This round trip is ideal for beginners who want to explore the different areas of the country on their own. You will explore the mountains of the Cordillera Central, have the opportunity to visit the producers of the country’s typical products coffee, cocoa and cigars and drive along the “Amber Coast” to the peninsula Samaná, a paradisiacal tropical landscape with secluded beaches in hidden bays.

8 days / 7 nights
Santo Domingo, Santiago de los Caballeros, Las Galeras, Bayahibe, Punta Cana
English, German, Spanish
Day 1: Welcome (190 km – 2 hrs 10 Min)

Welcome at the airport of Punta Cana and transfer to the old town of Santo Domingo.
Meals included: None
Services included: Transfer with Spanish speaking driver
Accommodation: Hotel Villa Colonial*** Santo Domingo – Standard Room

Day 2: Santo Domingo

Meals included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel Villa Colonial*** Santo Domingo – Standard Room

Optional Excursion (3-4 hrs): Santo Domingo City Tour "Clasico"
You will get to know the first city built by Europeans in America. Here the first cathedral in the New World was built, the first governor resided, the first bishop was consecrated, and the first hospital opened. The lively city of over a million inhabitants has several cultural, especially architectural, sights to offer that you won't find anywhere else on the island of Hispaniola. You will start the day in the historic old town, the so-called Zona Colonial, which has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On the city tour you will see the Palace of Diego Columbus, the historical museum Casas Reales, the Cathedral and the Parque Colón with the bronze monument of Christopher Columbus. You will stroll through Calle de las Damas, the first street paved in Santo Domingo for the ladies of the Spanish nobility to stroll, and the pedestrian street El Conde with its many stores and street vendors as well as bars and restaurants.
Excursion days: Daily (on Mondays it is a "Panorama Tour" without visiting the museums)
Take along: Sunscreen, sunglasses, hat and camera
Included: Entrance fees, English, German, Spanish or French speaking tour guide
Additional price: 50 USD per person
Guaranteed from 2 persons
Children from 2 to 11.99 years are allowed and pay 50% of the adult price

Day 3: Santo Domingo – La Vega - Jarabacoa (150 km – 2 hrs 30 Min)

Today, a Caribbean Tours representative will visit you at your hotel at 10:00 am and give you a short briefing. Thereby you will receive valuable tips for your round trip. Afterwards you will be driven to the rental car station. After picking up your rental car you will head north. In La Vega you will leave the highway. You will start the ascent into the mountains of the Cordillera Central, also called the Dominican Alps, where many locals spend their summer vacations. The small town of Jarabacoa is located here at 600 meters above sea level and is surrounded by pine forests, rivers, mountains and valleys. Spring-like temperatures prevail here all year round. The climatic health resort is the center for hiking enthusiasts and nature lovers.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Briefing, transfer to the rental station and rental car
Accommodation: Gran Jimenoa*** Jarabacoa – Deluxe Room

Day 4: Jarabacoa – San Francisco de Macorís – Las Galeras (220 km – 4 hrs 30 Min)

Before leaving Jarabacoa you can visit the coffee factory "Monte Alto", where everything about the cultivation and processing of coffee will be explained to you. Also a walk through the nature to the "Salto Baiguate" is recommended. Afterwards, the route goes in the direction of San Francisco de Macorís. On the way you should visit the "Sendero de Cacao". Here you will have the unique opportunity to learn everything from the cocoa bean to chocolate processing at the cacao plantation "Hacienda La Esmeralda", which supplies world-renowned chocolate factories. Today's destination is the Peninsula Samana. The 63 km long and between 10 and 20 km wide peninsula is characterized by a paradisiacal tropical landscape with secluded beaches in hidden bays, clean mountain rivers and rugged rocky coasts. Your hotel is located on a peak near Las Galeras.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Rental car
Accommodation: Casa El Paraíso*** Las Galeras – Double Room with Jacuzzi

Day 5: Las Galeras

Unwind on the beautiful and unique sandy beaches of this peninsula. We recommend you to visit the beach Playa Rincón, located west of Las Galeras, by car. Upon arrival, first visit the left side where you will discover the Caño Frio River. Here you can charter a wooden boat and visit the beautiful mangroves together with a local guide. Afterwards you will take the car again and drive to the right side of the bay. At the very end you will find a typical restaurant, this is the best place in the bay for swimming - a beach as you usually only know it from a postcard! Las Galeras also has beautiful beaches. From Playa Las Galeras you can take a speedboat excursion to Las Tres Playas, the three beaches. This excursion will allow you to discover the most beautiful beaches of the region. First, you will visit Playa Fronton beach, which can only be reached by sea. The water here is crystal clear. You can see colorful fish and corals while snorkeling. After that, they will visit Playita, a pretty little beach whose waters are transparent and turquoise (also accessible by car). Afterwards, the boat will take them along the coast to the previously mentioned beach Playa Rincon. From the boat they will experience the bay from a completely different perspective.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Rental car
Accommodation: Casa El Paraíso*** Las Galeras – Double Room with Jacuzzi

Day 6: Las Galeras – Bayahibe (300km – 4 hrs 30 Min)

After a long drive full of impressions towards the south, you will reach the village of Bayahibe. Here you will feel the energy of the Dominican Republic. Since this drive is very long, we recommend you to visit La Cueva de las Maravillas on the way. A cave system with underground river courses and the largest developed dripstone cave in the Dominican Republic. It holds many impressive drawings of the Taino Indians. The labyrinth in the same complex is also worth a visit - here you can put your sense of direction to the test.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Rental car
Accommodation: Bayahibe Guesthouse*** Bayahibe – Comfort Double Room

Day 7: Bayahibe

You can't actually leave Bayahibe without visiting Isla Saona. The island has arguably one of the most beautiful, white Caribbean beaches surrounded by turquoise, clear water. There are countless catamarans and speedboats offering the excursion daily. At your personal briefing in Santo Domingo we will explain all the details.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Rental car
Accommodation: Bayahibe Guesthouse*** Bayahibe – Comfort Double Room

Day 8: Bayahibe – Punta Cana (70 km – 1 hr)

Enjoy the morning in Bayahibe. Then drive to the airport according to your flight details. You can return the car at the airport. Since you are returning the car to a different location than where you picked it up, you will be charged a return fee when you drop off the rental car. This will be charged to your credit card when you pick up the car. If you have booked a beach extension with us, we will organize a transfer for you from the airport (after dropping off the car) to your beach hotel. It is also possible to return the car at the nearby airport of La Romana (20 min). This option is preferable for a bathing extension in Bayahibe.
Meals included: Breakfast
Services included: Rental car

  • Self-drive tours are available all year round.

Please check Caribbean Tours Booking Conditions.

This tour is possible as:

SELF-DRIVE TOUR - Services Included
  • Accommodation in the mentioned hotels or equivalent
  • Meals acording to description
  • Rental car with unlimited mileage and roadside assistance
  • Europcar - Typ „CFAR“ (Suzuki Vitara or similar)
  • Incl. CDWI (Collision Damage Waiver)
  • Comprehensive insurance with exclusion of the deductible of USD 472
  • Incl. TW (Theft Waiver)
    Insurance against theft excluding the deductible of USD 472
  • Incl. CDWS (Super Collision Damage Waiver)
    This insurance reduces CDWI's deductible to zero
  • Incl. TPC (Third Party Cover)
  • Insurance against damage to third parties (things, buildings and animals) with cover up to USD 12,000
  • Taxes and Fees
  • Welcome meeting and travel documentation with useful tips and information as well as road map
SELF-DRIVE TOUR - Services NOT included
  • Security deposit of USD 500 when taking over the rental car
    This amount is to be paid on site by credit card
  • Return fee for delivery of the rental car at a rental car station outside of Santo Domingo
  • Airport taxes in the amount of 10% of the total amount of the rental car when picked up at an airport
  • ALI Insurance (Additional Liability Insurance)
    This insurance increases the coverage of TPC to USD 52,000
  • WWI Insurance (Wheels and Windscreen Insurance)
    This insurance covers damage on tires and windscreen
  • Excursions and sightseeing as well as entrance fees
  • All meals and drinks not mentioned, as well as personal expenses



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