Puerto Plata – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 5 of 5

Puerto Plata - Beach 1

Hi all, I am doing a little something different this month and doing a 5 part series on cities to visit in the Dominion Republic. This is the final part of my 5 part series. Below are links to other cities in the country that we hope to visit. I have been watching some of my favorite YouTube vloggers Delightful Travellers and they have been there for six months and are planning to be there for a few more months. They make it look so beautiful and inviting that we are seriously thinking about spending a week or so there over Christmas and New Years’ this year. We have never been out of the country over the New Year I don’t think, and have never been to the Dominion Republic so this will be an adventure! Not sure where we will end up if we do go to the DR, thus I wanted to do some research on many cities to decide where we would like to visit most. This post is about a beach city named Puerto Plata. In it, I am going to share some of the fun things I hope to do if we make it to Puerta Plata, as well as share a little history about the area.

Puerto Plata - Beach 5

It is the capital of the province of Puerta Plata, the third-largest city in the DR, and is officially known as San Felipe de Puerto Plata (however most people still call it Puerta Plata). The settlement became notorious in April of 1563 when the English slave trader Sir John Hawkins brought 400 people he had abducted from Sierra Leone to the area. He then traded his victims with the Spanish for pearls, hides, sugar, and some gold. This was the start of British involvement in the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

Puerto Plata - Beach 4

Puerto Plata is bordered on the north by the Atlantic Ocean and to the south and southwest by the hill Isabel de Torres. Not surprisingly, it has a tropical climate, more specifically a tropical monsoon climate, with hot, somewhat wet summers and warm, very wet winters (Köppen climate classification Am), due to its tropical location and the cold fronts that reach the region during the “winter” which typically brings the area humid, wetter weather. However, the temperature in Puerto Plata varies so little throughout the year that it is not entirely meaningful to discuss hot and cold seasons. With that said, the tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Puerto Plata for general outdoor tourist activities is from mid-December to late March, with a peak score in the last week of January.

Puerto Plata - Ocean World

While the beaches of course are the biggest pull to the area, there are also quite a few things to do in the area. Here are just a few and they are not in any particular order. Let me know if there is something I need to add here or below.

Charcos

If you love waterfalls like me, you definitely have to check out 27 Charcos. Here you will find twenty-seven Mother Nature-created, awe-inspiring pools etched out of limestone. 27! That seems so amazing. This adventure is nestled in the rolling hills of the Northern Corridor Mountain range and behind long stocks of sugar cane. Sounds like a pleasure to visit even before you get there. This is high on my list if we make it one day.

Teleferico Puerto Plata Cable Car

Located on the Mountain “Isabel de Torres”, south of the beautiful city of Puerto Plata is this wonderful attraction. At the top of the mountain, above a fortress is the statue of “Christ the Redeemer” with open arms giving the welcome to visitors. After this warm welcome, you will be able to enjoy wonderful views of the ocean and city, as well as beautiful gardens, since the mountain has been declared a Scientific Reserve for a wide variety of animal and plant species.  You may also discover hidden caves that lead to springs and streams that flow into the mountain.

Ocean World Adventure Park

Stating to be the most complete entertainment complex of the Dominican Republic, lOcean World Adventure park is located in Cofresi Beach. It is just 3 miles west of the town of Puerto Plata and is the most advanced interactive marine park of its kind. Guests will have the opportunity to touch, pet, and feed all their favorite animals and mammal friends, including dolphins, sea lions, sharks, stingrays, exotic tropical birds; walk through rain forests, and much, much more. Sounds like it could be an experience of a lifetime.

Macorix House of Rum

What is a trip to the DR without touring a run plant? Macorix House of Rum offers lovers of rum a quick and enriching experience. Not only will you be able to taste the liquor, but you will also be able to know the history and evolution of the brand.

Amber Museum

This Victorian-style museum houses a unique collection of Dominican amber. What I didn’t know about amber is that it is classified as semiprecious and is actually tree sap that has hardened for millions of years, capturing many fossils of plant and insect life. The ages of the ones here vary from 20 Million years up to 245 Million years, while Dominican Amber ranges from 25-40 million years (Tertiary period). I thought that was very interesting. If you would like to learn more, they offer guided tours in several languages which are given Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm.

Puerto Plata - Beach 2

Puerto Plata is stated to be the Bride of the Atlantic and has more than 78 miles of golden sand beaches and turquoise waters dotted with palm trees. It’s an exotic paradise. Here are some of the best beaches in and around Puerto Plata.

Golden Beach (Playa Dorada)

The most popular beach in Puerto Plata is located on the Dominican Republic’s famous Amber Coast. Besides swimming and sunbathing, there are also plenty of other activities such as windsurfing, snorkeling and even fishing in some areas. Of course there are also plenty of bars and restaurants for snacks and drinks.

Playa Cofresí Beach

Playa Cofresí Beach is a lively beach that has the perfect conditions to practice aquatic sports like diving or snorkeling. Although the main attraction of this beach is its aquatic theme park, where people can spend an entertaining day. Just like at Golden Beach, you can find a great variety of hotels and restaurants, where you can taste the Dominican cuisine and discover the Dominican culture.

Long Beach

Located on the very eastern end of the Malecón is Long Beach where crowds flock particularly near sunset and into the night to enjoy the widest stretch of sand where a couple of beachside bars await. Locals and visitors enjoy surfing and swimming, while others just sit and enjoy the scenery.

Playa Sosúa

Even though it’s about 20 minutes away from Puerto Plata, this half-moon beach is one of the most popular beaches in the Caribbean. It’s a very lively beach that’s close to numerous restaurants and shops and is very popular with divers and snorkelers. As such, it was one of the first beaches to attract tourism to the Dominican Republic.

Puerto Plata - Resort

I hope we can make it to the Dominican Republic sometime this year or the year after. I know there are a lot of things to do in Puerto Plata so it might be hard to select just a few, especially if you only have a short amount of time. Whenever we go, I know I plan on going to a beach either early in the morning or late afternoon and exploring other aspects of the area during the day. Have you been to Puerto Plata? If so, please share some of your highlights in the comments below and add anything I may have missed while doing research.

Here is a link to my other posts on this series:

Punta Cana
Santo Domingo
Las Terrenas
Cabarete

Dominican Republic

Cabarete – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 4 of 5

Cabarete - Beach 4

Hi all, I am doing a little something different this month and doing a 5 part series on cities to visit in the Dominion Republic. This is part 4 of 5. Below are links to other cities in the country that we hope to visit.  I have been watching some of my favorite YouTube vloggers Delightful Travellers and they have been there for six months and are planning to be there for a few more months. They make it look so beautiful and inviting that we are seriously thinking about spending a week or so there over Christmas and New Years’ this year. We have never been out of the country over the New Year I don’t think, and have never been to the Dominion Republic so this will be an adventure! Not sure where we will end up if we do go to the DR, thus I wanted to do some research on many cities to decide where we would like to visit most. This post is about a beach city named Cabarete. In it, I am going to share some of the fun things I hope to do if we make it to Cabarete, as well as share a little history about the area. Continue reading “Cabarete – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 4 of 5”

Las Terrenas – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 3 of 5

Las Terrenas - BeachHi all, I am doing a little something different this month and doing a 5 part series on cities to visit in the Dominion Republic. This is part 3 of 5.  Below are links to other cities in the country that we hope to visit.  I have been watching some of my favorite YouTube vloggers Delightful Travellers and they have been there for six months and are planning to be there for a few more months. They make it look so beautiful and inviting that we are seriously thinking about spending a week or so there over Christmas and New Years’ this year. We have never been out of the country over the New Year I don’t think, and have never been to the Dominion Republic so this will be an adventure! Not sure where we will end up if we do go to the DR, thus I wanted to do some research on many cities to decide where we would like to visit most. This post is about a beach city named Las Terrenas. In it, I am going to share some of the fun things I hope to do if we make it to Las Terrenas, as well as share a little history about the area.

Continue reading “Las Terrenas – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 3 of 5”

Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 2 of 5

Santo Domingo - Beach 1Hi all, I am doing a little something different this month and doing a 5 part series on cities to visit in the Dominion Republic. This is part 2 of 5. Below are links to other cities in the country that we hope to visit.  I have been watching some of my favorite YouTube vloggers Delightful Travellers and they have been there for six months and are planning to be there for a few more months. They make it look so beautiful and inviting that we are seriously thinking about spending a week or so there over Christmas and New Years’ this year. We have never been out of the country over the New Year I don’t think, and have never been to the Dominion Republic so this will be an adventure! Not sure where we will end up if we do go to the DR, thus I wanted to do some research on many cities to decide where we would like to visit most. This post is about the capital city of the DR – Santo Domingo. In it, I am going to share some of the fun things I hope to do if we make it to Santo Domingo, as well as share a little history about the area. Continue reading “Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 2 of 5”

Punta Cana – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 1 of 5

Punta Cana - BeachHi all, I am doing a little something different this month and doing a 5 part series on cities to visit in the Dominion Republic. This is part 1 of 5. Below are links to other cities in the country that we hope to visit. I have been watching some of my favorite YouTube vloggers Delightful Travellers and they have been there for six months and are planning to be there for a few more months. They make it look so beautiful and inviting that we are seriously thinking about spending a week or so there over Christmas and New Years’ this year. We have never been out of the country over the New Year I don’t think, and have never been to the Dominion Republic so this will be an adventure!  Not sure where we will end up if we do go to the DR, thus I wanted to do some research on many cities to decide where we would like to visit most. This post is about the place that many think about when they think of the DR, Punta Cana. In this post, I am going to share some of the fun things I hope to do if we make it to Punta Cana as well as share a little history about the area. Continue reading “Punta Cana – Dominican Republic Visitor Guide Series Part 1 of 5”

Dog Beaches and Dog Parks in Florida – Bring Fido

Dog Beaches - 1As we head into spring and summer most people are now thinking about vacations and where to go. With that in mind, I was inspired by the vacation rental site Tripping.com and want to share the following top 10  friendly dog parks and dog beaches in Florida. After all, Fido wants to join you on your vacation too. I know our dogs Dolly and Belle always love(d) to go and explore new places with us. Below is a picture of them at a local lake here in Colorado. Continue reading “Dog Beaches and Dog Parks in Florida – Bring Fido”

Virginia Beach, VA – Venture Out into this Beautiful Beach Area

Virginia Beach - 1Today’s post on Virginia Beach is a guest post written by Catherine W.  over at www.WellnessVoyager.com.  Catherine is passionate about seeing as much of the world as possible. Ms. Workman spreads her love of travel alongside her great colleagues at WellnessVoyager. Hope you enjoy today’s post. Please share any comments below.  Continue reading “Virginia Beach, VA – Venture Out into this Beautiful Beach Area”

Tulum – The Mayan Ruins in the City of Dawn, Cancun

tulumIt may have been over 23 years ago since we visited Cancun, Mexico on our honeymoon, but we had a great time. One of the things we enjoyed while on our visit was the site of a Pre-Columbian Maya walled city named Tulum.  However, it was formerly been known by the name Zama, meaning City of Dawn, because it faces the sunrise. Continue reading “Tulum – The Mayan Ruins in the City of Dawn, Cancun”

Sun Safety Tips to Remember While Traveling this Summer

Sun - Girl in FieldDoing some mountain biking or hiking this summer? Hitting the beach or a river? Maybe a short trip to your local pool?  Wherever you like the Beach or the Mountains, or whatever you like to do for fun during the summer, be wary of the rays from the sun. As you may well know, studies show that exposure to the sun can cause skin cancer, may also cause eye problems, weaken your immune system, and give you skin spots, wrinkles, or “leathery” skin. This is caused by invisible ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

Sun - BoardwalkAlthough no one, no matter which skin type, is immune to the effects of UV. However, those with pale skin, blond, red, or light brown hair, been treated for skin cancer, or a family member who’s had skin cancer need to be especially cautious. This post is a little late this year, but The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated the Friday before Memorial Day as “Don’t Fry Day.” The goal?  To make sure people stay safe in the sun and protect their skin while enjoying the outdoors—on “Don’t Fry Day” and every day. Here are some suggestions to help you have a nice summer day outing while being safe.

USE SUNSCREEN

Sun - SunscreenI feel this is the truly most important thing to put on before heading out. I have really pale skin and fry in about ½ without sunscreen on. I just burn, then peel. Not much fun. L One important thing to mention about sunscreen is to FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS. A lot of people will put it on before they head out for the day and think they are good. They are not. Most sunscreen products need to be reapplied every 90 minutes to 2 hours. I’ve also seen people who don’t apply enough. It is suggested to use about 1 ounce of sunscreen (about a shot glass or palmful) should be used to cover the arms, legs, neck, and face of the average adult.

Sun - Sunscreen 2The other thing to consider about sunscreen is the sun protection factor (SPF). There are sunscreens products with a broad spectrum of protection, but it is suggested to choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Sunscreens labeled with SPFs as high as 100+ are available. Higher numbers do mean more protection, but many people don’t understand the SPF scale. SPF 15 sunscreens filter out about 93% of UVB rays, while SPF 30 sunscreens filter out about 97%, SPF 50 sunscreens about 98%, and SPF 100 about 99%. Thus the higher you go, the smaller the difference becomes. However, remember no sunscreen protects you completely.

WEAR A HAT

Sun - Floppy HatIt is very important to wear a hat outside, preferably one with a 2 to a 3-inch brim. The brim helps to protect the ears, eyes, forehead, nose, and scalp. If you don’t have one of those, wearing a large handkerchief or bandana under a baseball cap will work in a pinch.

WEAR SUNGLASSES

Sun - SunglassesWearing sunglasses not only protects the delicate skin around your eyes, but it also protects the eyes as well. When picking out a pair of new shades, don’t assume the sunglasses provide any UV protection. Make sure the label says “UV absorption up to 400 nm” or “Meets ANSI UV Requirements”. I like the wraparound glasses myself as it also blocks light coming in From the side.

HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE

Sun - WaterOur bodies are made up of about 60% water, and every system depends on water. Just one cute little water bottle isn’t going to be enough to keep you hydrated all day long. Studies show that you should be drinking 1 liter of water every hour. Avoid caffeinated beverages and alcohol. Fruits are an excellent source of water, such as watermelon which is 90% water. Oranges, tangerines, grapefruit, and melons are also strong contenders.

FIND SOME SHADE

Sun - Beach 4Reduce time in the sun, especially between 10-2 as that is when the sun is the strongest. Don’t be fooled by a cloudy day. They can be more dangerous because you don’t feel hot and thus stay out longer than you may have planned. Take a lawn chair and find a nice shady spot near a tree or structure. If you can’t find one of those, a large umbrella works great too. Have fun, but be safe out there. Spending your vacation in a hotel room with a sunburn is not a fun way to spend your valuable vacation time.  Let me know if you have any other great tips and I will add them to this post. Thanks in advance.

Beach, Mountains, or Best of Both Worlds? Which do you Prefer?

Mountains vs Beaches 1Deciding to take a vacation to the beach or the mountains has probably been a dilemma for people since we’ve been able to choose between the two destinations. I lived most of my life in Southern California and admit that I mostly took the ocean for granted. Continue reading “Beach, Mountains, or Best of Both Worlds? Which do you Prefer?”