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Dominican Republic is situated around the eastern side of Hispaniola, an island shared with Haiti. The Dominican Republic as it is termed, spans over two-thirds in the island. Samana, a port round the Dominican Republic's east peninsula might not look innately striking in the beginning; but still offers some of the most enjoyable surprises to explorative travelers who care to venture beyond its regular shops and restaurants. Situated near several fishing communities, the vibrant town offers some incredible food that's both fresh and genuine. Tourists can also go for horseback-riding, ATV tours, beach breaks, waterfall visits and getting together with local residents. In-town sights are limited, so an organized tour may be the most basic approach to experience this region. Furthermore you won't desire to miss local treats such as the famous larimar jewelry, slurpy Kola Real soda and scrumptious Dominican hot chocolate.
Excursions for the nearby island of Cayo Levantado, visible from Samana and situated about 10 minutes away by boat, can be located, utilizing the cruise ship options. In addition, some ships call only on Cayo Levantado, half becoming an open beach that exist only to cruising motorcycles on days when ships moor at the port, and half as being a personal resort.
Best Souvenir
The Dominican Republic is famous for Larimar, an overcast, pale-blue stone only found round the island of Hispaniola. It's difficult to fake it, so chances are good that you'll be only being bagging the original, authentic piece. You should not hesitate to bargain merchants are quite alright with it, and so they frequently raise prices keeping in mind that negotiating will occur.
If jewelry doesn’t swing your boat, consider Dominican-made cigars, items created from coconut, and natural cacao or chocolate, but do avoid purchasing woven palm hats. They're considered live plants, and they are likely to be confiscated if you return to your ship.
Where you are Docked
Cruise ships anchor at sea in the Bay of Samaná, your ship will anchor near a couple of piers and tender you to some of the best docks, because both versions sit along Avenida La Marina/Malecon. Cayo Levantado is a lush private island/beach type resort. If you would like the shoreline, you'll love the area. Three tender docks aren't not even close to the town, only a few minutes walk away. Tourists are tendered to either of the two available piers in town, both located within walking distance from the main shopping, restaurant and tour-taking area of the town. Some ships may call directly at Cayo Levantado, the small island in Samaná Bay and tourists will be tendered to the island’s public dock.  www.cruisesamana.com The main pier is known as Embat Pier, however when several ships are docked at the port around the given day, another pier, Pier Talkabout Marina Club, can be used as tendering.
You'll find tourism information and working areas for booking private shoreline tours. You might have taxis, toilets together with a huge map. The main cluster of merchants, restaurants and banks is about a ten-minute walk.
Here you'll find tour operators, taxis and motochonchos, residents who provide you with rides being worn by their motorcycles for their fee. Stalls and tents are in place to market food, art, jewelry together with other souvenirs. It comes down lower to some 5-minute walk for the town's primary area.
Although Cayo isn't a cruise line private island, it appears like one. If you attain the pier, you'll find signs pointing you to definitely certainly beaches, activities, bath rooms and eateries and drink. Everything you'll interest in day is at easy achieve.
You can walk for the primary area in Samana, where you'll find small shops, eateries together with a pleasant consider the harbor area. Should you're able to Embat Pier, it comes down lower to some ten-minute walk from Pier Talkabout Marina Club, you will be lead about a few minutes.
Taxis are plentiful in Samana they'll park next door before both Embat Pier and Pier Talkabout Marina Club. Handful of drivers speak British, so make certain to hold the The the spanish language language names of places you may want to go, and bear a pocket dictionary if you don't be familiar with language.
Things To See and Do

Samana city Samana city claims an unusual history and, as a result, an unusual character. It was settled by two shiploads of freed American slaves around 1824 and, to this day, many residents speak English as a first language. The US cultural influence is also apparent in many of the last names of the settlers of this area. Urban renewal is improving the overall look of Samana city.
Las Terrenas town Worth a stroll. Lots of shops feature all sort of beach wear and gear. Great supermarket in town, restaurants, delicious pate and pastry shops, reflecting the European influence.
El Limon Waterfall Take the El Portillo road going East and stay on it until you get to the town of El Limon. The waterfall is about 300 meters above sea level and has a 40 meter drop that ends in a very deep but swimable pool of crystal clear waters.
Samana has some of the best whale-watching in the world. Every year, the excursions depart to catch the frolicking giant creatures from 15 January to 15 March. See the DR1 Whale-Watching Page
Los Haitises National Park. Easily reached by a short boat ride across the Bay is Los Haitises National Park. This area is known as having one of the most important rainforests and mangrove reserves in the entire Caribbean, complete with keys and caves. You can only enter the park with a certified guide. Day excursions can be booked from most hotels.
Mountain biking, hiking, horse riding
There are few destinations as great as Samana for these ecotourism sports. Be on the lookout at your hotel for tour operators that offer these activities. Note that there is no better way to really see the area than by mountain bike, hiking or horse riding. End the day with a plunge in a deserted beach. Horse riding excursions that will take you through jungles and paradise beaches are offered at many hotels. Highly recommended.
Samana has many caves for exploring. Check out the availability of excursions offering sightings of petroglyphs and pictograms from the days of the Indian settlers. Samana is known as the site of the first battle between the Indian settlers and the European conquerors - the Battle of the Arrows.
Rock climbing
Rock climbing enthusiasts should look into the Playa Fronton excursions. Playa Fronton is located at the end tip of Las Galeras. It is a spectacular beach, even if you are not into climbing.
Take the four wheeler excursion to discover the many beaches on the northwestern coast of the peninsula, off Las Terrenas.
If you are staying in Las Terrenas, visit Playa Rincón Beach on the other side of the peninsula. Considered one of the best in the Dominican Republic, this beach can be reached by four wheel car, horseback over the mountains or by a short boat trip from Las Galeras. To get to Las Galeras, take the Samana road east to the end.
Whale-watching excursions from January 15-March 15. Some of the better excursions leave at 9 am and make a stopover at Cayo Levantado island, which wouldn’t leave time to make it back on the bus. Samana and whale-watching are really worth a visit on their own. Or at least try to overnight in Las Terrenas (one hour away), or Las Galeras (half an hour away from the port), or Samana (right there).
Local Experienced
If you wish to be on trips throughout your day, consider leasing an ATV. Regardless if you are on your own or moving a passenger, it's a powerful way to circumvent to find out numerous Samana's best-known sights, as well as the price of rental includes a guide and that means you won't wander off round the wooded trails.
Take Calle Colon to Calle Teadore Chasereaux, and search for the adorable La Churcha, an Evangelical chapel brought to tobago from England inside the 1800's. Across out of this, you'll find a beautiful Catholic chapel that holds services on Sunday morning, should you'll be in port around the weekend.
Beaches on the north side of the peninsula: Playa Bonita (fun waves), Cozon (fun waves, can be rough), Las Terrenas, El Portillo and Playa Popy (always tranquil waters). Playa Rincon is on the north side, but needs to be reached via the Samana road or by boat. Once you are in Las Galeras, there are daily small boat ferries to Playa Rincon beach, a spectacular 2 km. bay.
Beaches on the south side of the peninsula: Playa Galeras (about an hour and a half from Las Terrenas) and Cayo Levantado. Cayo Levantado is an island of about one square kilometer, made of a protruding coral reef which protects Samana bay from the Atlantic waves. With its lovely white sand beaches flanked by tall coconut trees, this island is a popular day outing with boat loads of tourists arriving daily.
This really is the closest beach where your ship will pier when getting in touch with Samana -- of a 15- to twenty-minute walk or possibly a 5-minute taxi ride. It doesn't cash if this involves amenities, but there's also a few small stands selling souvenirs and souvenirs. It's also where you'll find ease of access Bridge to Nowhere. The non-public beach club here offers changing rooms, a coffee shop or restaurant, nice bath rooms and rental patio chairs. Site site visitors can buy boat transportation within the port for the beach or day passes including transportation, the seaside chair and drink vouchers.
Maui, close to the Samana peninsula, is accessible only by ship-backed tender boat, wherever your ship docks. It's composed of two sides: an individual resort side together with an open side that cruise site site visitors connect. Round the public half are bath rooms, activity areas, eateries and buy fancy drinks, together with a clear beach with patio chairs and marine sports gear rental costs. Beware: Residents will interrupt your otherwise peaceful obtaining a tan to tout shateringly rough massages, hair-braiding and overpriced coconut drinks.
Enterprising residents with motorbikes will give rides to anybody searching for transportation for very economical prices. However, this really is frequently exceedingly dangerous due to the aggressive habits of Dominican drivers as well as the motochoncho's inclination to weave between bigger automobiles. It's also not the very best means by inclement weather, and you also likely won't uncover mind gear.
Try an ATV adventure or horseback ride to a couple of stunning waterfalls, to possess a refreshing dip. Additionally, you will get a bit of local history when you pass notable sites like the PENINSULA'S new synthetic lake, which gives water to a lot of of Samana. These tours take roughly three several hours, and ATV activities could be accomplished with one passenger or two. For further wallet-friendly and many types of-inclusive independent versions of individuals activities, try Tour Samana With Terry. His tours may also add a zip line ride and visits having a nearby co-op -- where you'll sample items like real cacao, freshly made hot chocolate, Mama Juana and plantains -- plus an old fishing beach that hosts a buffet lunch with authentic Dominican cuisine. You'll even get free drinks (water, soda, beer, rum) with the trip.
A four-hour cultural highlights tour provides you with to local sites with cultural significance, including La Churcha, a chapel introduced from England in pieces and set together again in 1860 just a little whale exhibit, explaining everything you should understand about the area's famous humpback whales and Taino Park, where you'll discover about Hispaniola's original residents.
Ideal for Beach Bums: In case your beach day is what you are searching for along with your ship isn't contacting Cayo Levantado, book a holiday in maui, a ten-minute tender ride from Samana. Once ashore, you'll obtain access to all that's necessary for just about any fun day outdoors -- a obvious beach with patio chairs and marine sports rental costs, massages, food and drinks, souvenirs, bath rooms and hobbies like kayaking and sea lion encounters.
Whale-watching: The month of the month of January through March is prime whale-watching season in Samana. If you're lucky, you may be capable of see humpbacks splashing around in water within the deck from the ship. However, the best option if you wish to see these awesome creatures upclose and personal is always to book a trip in advance, either individually or making use of your cruise line.
A vacation in this 12-part zip line is only able to be had by booking a trip, but it's certainly useful for your sights -- to be able to conquer nervousness. It's rumored to be the most secure zip line inside the Americas, boasting a genuine brake system. Following a run, you'll make a trip to the the Lulu Waterfall.
This breathtaking waterfall is a touch cumbersome to access, but its accessible when walking and also on horseback. There's no admission fee, which is open to everyone for swimming, but you may need a help guide to to help you make it happen. Just behind the falls can be a cave making for a lot of fun exploration if you're game.
Eating Out
Authentic Dominican foods are usually in your town grown and produced. There exists a an emphasis on chicken and freshly caught sea food, grain and beans, and fruits like coconuts and plantains. Many people operate stands that offer homemade items like bread and empanadas. Drinks native to the location include fresh juice, Dominican coffee and hot chocolate, Kola Real soda and -- for people hunting for a little from the alcoholic kick -- Mama Juana, Presidente beer and native rum. There also seems to become surplus of Italian fare inside the DR.
Do not let this cafe's small size fool recption menus is quite extensive, as well as your foods are perfect too. It's open all day long lengthy, nonetheless its areas are desserts and breakfast foods. Choose from sandwiches, pancakes together with other standard fare. Of note will be the milkshakes, fresh fruit juices  and hot chocolate made fresh with local cacao.
For people who've only eyes for dessert, have a look at Bon, an frozen goodies shop. You may have some trouble interacting while using employees once they don't speak British, since the menus are simply Spanish.
On days when ships will be in port, residents setup stands near Pier Talkabout Marina Club. Make certain to test the empanadas. Fried and filled with meat, they're very economical, perfect for a quick meal on the move, and -- in addition -- they're tasty. In the event you book a trip in Samana, there's an opportunity a traditional Dominican lunch will probably be incorporated, featuring items like chicken, sea food, grain and beans, cabbage salad and plantains. If you are planning for the island, you'll have a handful of buffet options for supper, nonetheless they all serve similar fare: chicken, sea food, pasta salad, grain and beans, lots of fresh veggies, bread and fruit.
Restaurants in Samaná pride themselves on serving fresh fish from Samaná and shrimp from Sánchez. Fishermen bring in the catch of the day to Las Terrenas and Las Galeras beaches, where guests staying in apartments can strike bargains with the fishermen and take home and cook the freshest seafood available in the country.
Enjoy the experience of grilled fish right on the beach with a piña colada made with fresh pineapple crushed inside a freshly picked coconut. Coconuts and ginger are key ingredients in Samaná food. “Pescado con coco” is the signature meal. Mi Vieja on the Samaná highway to Las Galeras sells bread and sweets made in the traditional African-American style. Pueblo de los Pescadores right on Las Terrenas beach is a string of many restaurants and bars. You will find some of the better restaurants in the many small hotels in the area, including the Mi Corazón Restaurant in town with its award-winning chef.

The best place for shopping is downtown Las Terrenas. Many locally made crafts, including jewelry, woodwork and clothing are available. Pick up a coconut leaf hat on the beach.

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