Best of the Southeast
- Where to Go
- The Best of the Dominican Republic
- A Nature Lover’s Dominican Trek
- The Sexiest Dominican Beaches
- Historical Dominican Road Trip
- A Dominican Culture Tour
- Carnaval and Its Masks
- Planning Your Dominican Wedding
- Dominican Adventures
- Golfing the Dominican Republic
- Dominican Music and Dance
- La Ruta del Mango
- Day-Tripping in Monte Plata
- The Best Small Resorts
Altos de Chavón: This replica of a 16th-century Italian village is also home to a school of art and design. Shop in the many stores for original student art, souvenirs, and jewelry. Enjoy a show in the 7,000-seat amphitheater or dine in one of the many enticing restaurants.
Isla Saona: This island is part of the Parque Nacional del Este and is the most popular day trip taken by tourists vacationing in the Southeast or Costa del Coco regions. After a boat trip through the crystalline waters where the Caribbean Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean, visitors can enjoy the powdery white-sand beaches of this picture-postcard island.
La Piscina Natural: It doesn’t seem right, but you can sit in the middle of the Caribbean Sea. La Piscina is a starfish- inhabited sandbar off the southwestern coast of the Parque Nacional del Este’s peninsula. It’s a hit with excursion boats taking visitors to Isla Saona. Although it can get quite congested with tourists, it is worth a short visit to bathe in the ultra-tranquil clear and balmy water.
Parque Nacional del Este: This arid national park occupies almost the entire southeastern peninsula. It holds evidence of Taíno life; ruins, cave drawings, and burial sites have recently been discovered. This park is also home to some 539 species of flora, 144 types of birds, and the endangered bottle-nosed dolphins and manatees frolicking offshore.
Punta Cana Beaches: Internationally famous for its plush white shores, tall coconut trees, turquoise waters, and myriad of all-inclusive hotels dotting the shores — be pampered as a guest of the resorts, or enjoy the afternoon with a day pass while relaxing in the Caribbean sun. Either way, this is vacationing.
Parque Nacional Los Haitises: This is a treat for the ecocurious traveler. You enter the park by boat through the semi-spooky, mangrove-studded coastline. More than 750 species of plants, 110 species of birds, bats, and even the endangered manatee are at home in the extensive cave systems and lagoons throughout the park. A definite must for ecotravelers.
© Ana Chavier Caamaño from Moon Dominican Republic, 4th edition