Trip October 2013
This was my first time being in the Caribbean and for this one we chose for Dominican Republic. I always wanted to go after seeing so many beautiful pictures and the nice reviews.
We started looking and comparing prices between Belgium and The Netherlands and you don’t have to think twice when choosing for the same offer but for less money. We booked a flight + hotel with Neckermann.nl. We didn’t expect much, just thought we got a good deal and went with the biggest smile to our vacation in a nice place.
We flew with Condor airlines and it was actually good and no complaints. The landing was quite an experience, it was very windy! But once out of the airplane we started our DR vacation and were welcomed by someone who drives everyone to the different resorts. We were one of the the last to be dropped off so we could see everybody’s resort entrance and all of them looked impressively big till we arrived to ours…
This was nothing compared to what we saw from the bus; At Iberostar Grand Bavaro, the bell boy was ready to welcome us and take our bags. They show us the way to the reception and got again greeted and received a welcome drink and a cold towel to refresh. We are not this type of people, believe me; we were a bit intimidated but not enough till we heard the word butler. Really? The guy was ready to complete our requests and so on. For us this was a bit too much so we actually did not see him again as we can found our way ourselves for many things.
The week went on and we enjoyed all the food, drinks and all the attention we got from the staff. We talked to everyone, listened to their stories, their way of life outside the resort. The people working there make the resort, without them the resort is nothing.
We decide to go out and visit Don Lucas Cigars for some souvenirs as it has a good reputation. If you want to go, you take contact with them through their website and they pick you up with other guests from other resorts for free.
We also wanted to take the advantage to really see the country, we booked a trip to Samana by plane. We visited a small cigar and cacao producer, later we went by horse to the El Limon waterfall. This last part was nice to see but for me the horse was not necessary, it felt uncomfortable and the companion (guide) was going by foot. The conditions of the animals in the Dominican Republic were terrible and we wished we hadn’t takenpart of such a tour. The guides do not make much from the company but live mostly from tips. I did not think they worked very hard for the tip but it broke my heart to hear how the lived and tipped the guy just to help him a bit.
Afterwards we were brought to Cayo Levantado (Isla Bacardi) a quite pretty place and we had the chance to dip into the water 🙂 Late in the afternoon we flew back to Bavaro and went back to our palace.
I do really suggest to talk to the staff of the hotel and to the locals if you can. As well leave the luxury of your hotel room and go discover the surroundings. Most of the guests do not leave the resort and don’t have to, but if you can, go for it.
I hope one day to go back but the world is quite big and there is so much to discover out there.