Caribbean Adventure: Dominican Republic9 Days • 4 Cities Caribbean Adventure: Dominican Republic
When you think of the Caribbean, you probably picture fruity drinks on the beach, lounging in the water, and tan lines for your tan lines. This trip to the Dominican Republic is all that AND a bag of chips…full of breathtaking views and a few doses of adrenaline. The DR is paradise from every angle—white-sand beaches and rugged cliffs along the coast, mountains and jungles inland, and bustling cities sprinkled throughout. Get ready to spend nine days exploring, eating, dancing, and hiking your way through it all.
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What are the top highlights?
- Hike to—and swim in—a picturesque waterfall in Jarabacoa
- Find out what a place nicknamed “The City of Eternal Spring” feels like
- Feel transported back in time, walking through the Colonial Zone of Santo Domingo
- Ride the rapids of the Yaque del Norte River
- Watch kite surfers, windsurfers, and regular surfers do what they do best—surf!
- Visit the monument built to commemorate Christopher Columbus’s discovery of this island in 1492
- Get your groove on during a classic Dominican dance lesson
Your trip includes
- Round-trip flights & airport transfers
- Multilingual Tour Director & local guides
- Private motorcoach
- 8 nights in hand-picked accommodations
- Welcome Mixer with appetizers & drinks
- Daily breakfast & three-course Farewell Dinner
- Entrances to select attractions
You’ll stay at accommodations hand-picked by our team of local experts, in rooms only for EF Ultimate Break travelers. Each property is located in a safe, convenient area. You’ll receive your exact accommodations 30 days before your trip departs.
Click here for examples of where you'll stay.
Admit it, booking flights is the worst. Here's why you should let us do it for you:
- Flight costs are included in your monthly payment plan, so you can pay over time
- Airport transfers are included, so we’ll be waiting, sign in hand
- Flights are booked with major airlines
- 24/7 support no matter what time zone you’re in
- One checked bag included on most flights
- Option to make changes to your trip up to 99 days before departure
Booking with a friend? Let us know and we’ll do our best to make sure you’re on the same flight. Still want to book your own flights? That’s cool, simply select ‘No flights included’ instead of your departure city in the ‘Flights from’ dropdown.
Day 1: Fly to Santo Domingo
Board your flight to Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic. You’ve got over a week of adventure ahead of you. So sit back, get some rest, and start quietly chanting “DR” to the confused person next to you on the plane.
- Meet an EF representative at the airport.
- Transfer to your accommodation and check in.
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
- Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive.
Day 2: Tour Santo Domingo
Fetch your cocktail umbrellas, and throw on your comfiest walking shoes; this city is one part Caribbean paradise, one part bustling urban hub. And if you’ve ever considered combining rum, red wine, and honey, but been too nervous that people would judge you, Santo Domingo is the place for you. Locals combine these ingredients to create Mamajuana, a strong drink considered by some to be an aphrodisiac. Get the candles ready.
- Join your Tour Director on a tour of Santo Domingo.
- Wander through the Colonial Zone—founded in 1498, it’s the oldest European settlement in the Western Hemisphere.
- Visit the Columbus Lighthouse, a tribute to the explorer’s life and home to his remains (though the Spanish would tell you his body is buried in Seville).
- Open your third eye at Los Tres Ojos, an expansive cave with three lakes and plenty of stalactites and stalagmites for all you cave nerds.
In the evening, it’s time for your Welcome Mixer. Enjoy appetizers and drinks with fellow travelers at an authentic local spot. Afterwards, take the party elsewhere.
Day 3: Travel to Jarabacoa
Time to get your explorer on and check out the island. Head inland to the small town of Jarabacoa, nicknamed “The City of Eternal Spring” for its warm but not hot temperatures. The perfect weekend getaway for Dominicans, this oasis nestled between mountains will leave you relaxed, breathless, and wanting to tell no one about it so you can keep it all to yourself—and your fellow travelers, of course.
- Trade in the hustle and bustle of Santo Domingo for the laid-back vibe of Jarabacoa.
- Put some headphones on, look out the window at the beautiful views, and do that thing when you pretend you’re thinking really hard about something.
- Arrive in Jarabacoa and settle in to your accommodation.
- Partake in a typical Dominican dance lesson, complete with a traditional Caribbean dinner and plenty of hip-shaking once you hit the dance floor.
Day 4: Explore Jarabacoa
Elevated heart rate. Heavier than normal breathing. Sweaty palms. If today was a movie, it’d be an action-adventure flick, starring you. You’ll go from whitewater rafting down a river, to hiking through the jungle, to swimming under a waterfall. So grab your co-stars (fellow travelers), the director (Tour Director), and of course—your camera. Quiet on set, everybody. We. Are. Rolling.
- Answer adventure’s call and head to the Yaque del Norte River, the longest in the DR.
- Learn the basics of whitewater rafting from a local guide, and take on several different classes of rapids.
- Feed the appetite you’ve surely worked up with an included lunch surrounded by postcard-worthy jungle views.
- Lace up your boots for a short hike to Salto de Baiguate waterfall, and then cool off with a dip in said waterfall.
Day 5: Travel to Cabarete
After the previous day’s non-stop action, slow things down a bit at the resort town of Cabarete. It’s right along the beach, only has one major street, and is the watersport capital of the country. Kitesurfers, windsurfers, and even boring ol’ regular surfers hit the waves all day every day. But don’t worry—there’s plenty of room for non-watersport activities, too.
- Leave the eternal spring behind, and make your way to Cayo Arena, an islet and snorkeler’s paradise off the coast.
- Snorkel and swim with your new friends—the fish, of course.
- Put on your relaxation hat and travel by bus to Cabarete.
- Spend the evening doing exactly what you want to do.
Day 6: Travel to Cabarete
One day of exploring. Three methods of transportation. And no, one of them is not hover board. You’ll head to the peak of a nearby mountain, where you can scream all of the things you’ve always wanted to scream from the mountaintops. After snapping the perfect pic (looking at you, Instagrammers), you’ll see a Spanish fortress that protected the city of Puerto Plata from pirates. *Cue “Pirates of the Caribbean” music*
- Hop on the bus for a trip around the surrounding area with your Tour Director.
- Ride a cable car to the top of Pico Isabel de Torres, a mountain that towers over the beach below.
- Feel on top of the world—or at least the Dominican Republic—as you take in the panoramic views from 2,600 feet up.
- Come back down to Earth and visit Fortaleza San Felipe, a Spanish fortress built in the 1500s.
Day 7: Relax in Cabarete
Another day in paradise, another day to soak up all the fun in the sun. Continue watching the surfers drop in, hang ten, and rip (#sickbro). And if you’re really into it, ask them for their tips and tricks. If not, just sit back, relax, and enjoy the beach.
- Hit the beach for one final day of saying “life’s a beach” to everyone around you.
- Lounge on the beach, or simply be present in this beautiful destination fit for a postcard.
- Spend the rest of the afternoon as you please, on the white-sand beaches of the Dominican Republic.
Surf's Up!(extra cost)
Time to get like, totally radical, dudes and dudettes! Lend your ear to a local surfer, who will help take you from beginner to “slightly better than” beginner. Lesson one: Bend your knees, keep your eyes open, and do everything in your power not to fall off the board. The rest will come with some practice, and you’ll be riding those gnarly waves before you know it. Cowabunga!
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
Day 8: Travel to Santiago
Take your suitcase—and your new tan lines—to Santiago, the second largest city in the Dominican Republic, with a population of just under 1 million people. Part of the Cibao valley, Santiago is an agricultural mecca with tobacco and sugarcane plantations dominating the surrounding area. In town, cigar shops are the Starbucks of Santiago—at every corner and full of people. Embrace your inner [insert famous cigar aficionado] and learn what goes in to making the cigars some say are better than Cubans.
- Take a bus to Santiago, enjoying views of the Dominican countryside along the way.
- Check in to your accommodation and get ready for a final night out.
- Explore the area around the hotel with your Tour Director.
- Cool off with a cold beer or cocktail at a local bar—it won’t be hard to find one.
Share some last laughs (and maybe shed a few tears) at an included farewell dinner with the group.
Day 9: Fly Home
Translation: Goodbye, friends! Your next destination awaits—home. Before you head to the airport, enjoy your last few moments together. Take one more group photo. Grab that final drink. (Fine, maybe a couple of drinks.) But this isn’t goodbye. It’s “See you later.” The only question is, where?
EXTEND YOUR TRIP 2 WAYS
1. Double the fun
A lot of our trips line up back to back! Give us a call—we can help you add another and save big while you're at it.
2. Go ahead or stay behind
Extending your trip is easy! During checkout, you'll have the option to fly to (or from) the gateway of your choice for an additional fee. We'll adjust your flights accordingly, but you'll be responsible to take care of your transportation, hotels, and other logistics outside of tour.
Note: Depending on your desired gateways, additional fees may apply.
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