The Dominican Republic, on the eastern half of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, has rightly earned its reputation as a beautiful beach resort destination. It’s also a wonderful place to visit on a cruise, with ships docking at the new, purpose-built cruise terminal at Amber Cove or in the capital of Santo Domingo.
There are lovely stretches of beach all around, but for a special beach day, skim over the water on a catamaran to the small island of Saona. Relax in the powdery sand, play in the water or doze in a hammock under the coconut palms.
If you’re looking for some adrenaline-pumping fun, swing up into the saddle for a horseback ride through the countryside, then soar through the treetops on a zipline (don’t forget to admire the amazing views!)
On the north coast (also called the Amber Coast), learn the history of the translucent stone at the Amber Museum in the city of Puerto Plata. Then, visit the Fortress San Felipe, which once protected the city from pirates and other raiders; it was later used as a jail and is now a museum.
You can spend hours touring the capital city of Santo Domingo, founded in 1496 by the brother of explorer Christopher Columbus. In the sprawling Park Mirador del Este, visit Los Tres Ojos (the three eyes), beautiful turquoise lagoons set in open-air limestone caves. Across the Ozama River lies the Zona Colonial, where you can tour the Alcazar de Colon, a mansion and museum built in 1510 by Columbus’ son, Diego. Also worth a visit is the Cathedral of Santa Maria la Menor, one of the oldest churches in the Americas.
There’s still more to do on a port call in the Dominican Republic, such as snorkeling, diving, swimming with dolphins, and visiting coffee and cocoa plantations.
If you’re interested in voluntourism, Fathom, a small cruise line that exclusively offers voluntourism cruises, sails from Miami to the Dominican Republic. You can immerse yourself in Dominican culture while working alongside residents and your fellow passengers on projects intended to serve the needs of communities in and around Puerto Plata.
To pick a cruise ship and itinerary that will take you to the Dominican Republic and other wonderful destinations in the Caribbean, talk with Anita, your Cruise Holidays personal cruise expert.
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