République Dominicaine vakantie

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Best Places to Visit

The capital, Santo Domingo, is one of the main tourist hubs for Dominican Republic holidays. Here, there are plenty of shops, cafés and restaurants, along with a huge variety of bars and nightlife. Tourists will also find Mercado Modelo, a two-storey market in the Colonial Zone. It's a great place to pick up souvenirs and test out your haggling skills.

Outside of the capital, there is a wide variety of places to visit. Cabarete is a great beach with plenty of beach-side restaurants for a quick snack, or for a longer meal with stunning views. The biggest draw for many tourists here is the windsurfing and kite-surfing, as the coastal winds make it the perfect place for professionals and beginners alike.

For those tourists wanting to see some wildlife, package holidays to Dominican Republic are ideal for humpback whale-watching, and one of the best places to see them is Cofresi. Cruises which take passengers out to see the whales are easily found if you want to see these majestic marine beasts up close.

For those looking to add a bit of adventure to their trip, Puna Cana and Pico Duarte provide thrills in abundance. In Punta Cana, visitors can zip wire through the rainforest, admiring the views as they go, while Pico Duarte is the highest peak in the Caribbean. Found within Bermudez National Park, the peak can be hiked, although it's quite a demanding two-day trek that is not advisable for beginners.

Jarabacoa, an inland town, is another ideal spot for thrill-seekers. Here, there's a huge array of activities on offer, from mountain biking and horseback riding, to white-water rafting - a selection for land lovers and water sports enthusiasts alike, or you can combine the different pursuits into one itinerary.

The Dominican Republic is ideal for relaxing too, with endless miles of stunning beaches to choose from. Playa Boca Chica, a bustling beach with white sands and crystal clear waters, is located just outside of the capital. Playa Rincon, on the eastern shoreline of the Samana Peninsula, is slightly more difficult to reach, but tends to be deserted.

To really get a feel for the history of the country, tourists should visit Altos de Chavon, a replica 16th century Spanish village. With beautiful scenery, it overlooks the Chavon River. There's also an archaeological museum and numerous art galleries here, adding to the appeal for a cultural break.

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Need to know

Language

Spanish is the official language of the Dominican Republic; however, many residents speak English, particularly in the capital of Santo Domingo and the touristy areas. French, German and Italian are also commonly spoken among those working in the tourist industry. For anyone heading into the rural areas, a Spanish phrase book will come in handy, or you may be able to take a guided tour or hire an interpreter if appropriate for your excursion.

Currency

Although the Dominican peso (DOP) is the official currency, US dollars are accepted in most areas. ATMs aren't especially common and only Banco Popular, Banco Progreso, Banco León and Scotiabank ATMs accept foreign debit cards. Currency can be changed at a bank as well as airports. Credit cards are widely accepted, especially in the tourist areas, hotels and shops. There is usually a charge of around 16 percent for this service. Be wary of using the most convenient forms of exchange - you'll often pay a premium compared with taking the trouble to exchange some cash upfront.

Visas

No visa is required for UK and EU nationals, but all visitors must purchase a tourist card on arrival. A tourist card costs around €8, or US$10, and can only be paid in euro or US dollars. A departure tax of around €16/US$20 is also required and again, only euro and US dollars are accepted. Some flights include the departure tax in the booking, but it's best to check with your airline in advance or to have the correct amount of currency available.

Climate

With the exception of the central mountains, temperatures remain around 28°C throughout the year. The rainy season, May to October, is best avoided as it can be extremely humid. June to November, however, is hurricane season, adding an extra 'red flag' to this time of year. Ideal times to travel to the Dominican Republic are December to February or the peak summer holiday season of July to August as these periods have the best of the weather without the humidity or hurricanes.

Main Airports

Punta Cana International Airport in the east of the country is the busiest airport, although the biggest and most modern airport is Las Américas International Airport, just outside of Santo Domingo. Many global carriers fly to both airports from London, Madrid, Paris and Frankfurt, as well as New York and Toronto.

Flight Options

A number of major airlines fly to Punta Cana International Airport from London-Gatwick year round, with some also flying from Manchester. Las Américas International Airport receives flights from London-Gatwick, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow-International. A direct flight from London to the Dominican Republic takes around nine hours and 15 minutes.

Travel Advice

It can be cheaper to fly from Paris or another European city than it is to fly from London. Incorporating a stopover can reduce the flight cost by half. This is especially true in the peak season, from July to August. Outside of peak season, it can be cheaper for UK travellers to fly to a US airport and then take a connecting flight.

Other Transport Options

It is possible to get the Dominican Republic by boat. International ferry services connect the country with Mayagüez in Puerto Rico. There are around three services a week, one at the weekend and two during the week. The trip takes around 12 hours and is reasonably cheap. Typically, it's seating only but for a bit extra it is possible to purchase a private cabin.

Kaart

Température moyenne (°C)

  • 28

    J

  • 29

    F

  • 29

    M

  • 30

    A

  • 31

    M

  • 32

    J

  • 32

    J

  • 32

    A

  • 32

    S

  • 32

    O

  • 30

    N

  • 29

    D

Mois

Précipitations (mm)

  • 90

    J

  • 68

    F

  • 69

    M

  • 102

    A

  • 177

    M

  • 112

    J

  • 116

    J

  • 143

    A

  • 176

    S

  • 158

    O

  • 145

    N

  • 119

    D

Mois

Feiten

  1. De Dominicaanse Republiek ligt op het eiland Hispaniola in de Grote Antillen, niet te verwarren met de eilandstaat Dominica in de Kleine Antillen.
  2. De inwoners van allebei de landen worden 'Dominicanen' genoemd, wat bij kan dragen aan de verwarring, zeker omdat de twee plekken maar zo'n 1000 kilometer uit elkaar liggen.
  3. Het westelijk deel van Hispaniola hoort bij Haïti. Het is een van de slechts twee Caraïbische eilanden die wordt gedeeld door twee landen (het andere is Sint Maarten).

Feiten

  1. De Dominicaanse Republiek ligt op het eiland Hispaniola in de Grote Antillen, niet te verwarren met de eilandstaat Dominica in de Kleine Antillen.
  2. De inwoners van allebei de landen worden 'Dominicanen' genoemd, wat bij kan dragen aan de verwarring, zeker omdat de twee plekken maar zo'n 1000 kilometer uit elkaar liggen.
  3. Het westelijk deel van Hispaniola hoort bij Haïti. Het is een van de slechts twee Caraïbische eilanden die wordt gedeeld door twee landen (het andere is Sint Maarten).

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