- See Santo Domingo's colonial buildings on a bike tour
- Stay at Bayahibe, one of DR's most beautiful resort areas
- Dine on white-sand beaches at secluded islands
- Go snorkeling and diving in crystalline Caribbean waters
|Arrive in Santo Domingo & City Bike Tour
|Los Tres Ojos National Park Excursion, Optional Activities
|Transfer to Bayahibe, Stop at Cueva de las Maravillas
|Day Trip to Saona Island
|Bayahibe Off-roading 4x4 Tour & Monkeyland Visit
|Diving on Catalina Island
|Bayahibe to Santo Domingo, Depart
Day 1: Arrive in Santo Domingo & City Bike Tour
Welcome to Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic! This is one of the Caribbean's most impressive capitals, and it's the site of the very first European settlement anywhere in the Americas. Upon arrival at the airport, a private car will be waiting to take your family to your hotel.
After unpacking and unwinding, you and the gang will head out for a 1.5-hour bicycle tour of the city. This is the best way to experience Santo Domingo, founded in 1496. As the oldest city in the Caribbean, its Zona Colonial (colonial center) is packed with historic architecture. Your guide will highlight the most impressive landmarks, such as the Basilica Cathedral of Santa María la Menor. Built in 1514, this is the first church in the Americas and the oldest.
Other highlights include the Alcázar de Colón (the first Spanish palace in the Americas), Fortaleza Ozama (the oldest military fort in the Americas), and the remains of the Northern Walls, the defensive structures that once protected the city from attacks on both land and sea. You'll also stop at the Monastery of San Francisco (1560) and the ruins of Hospital San Nicolás de Bari, among other places of interest.
Day 2: Los Tres Ojos National Park Excursion, Optional ActivitiesThis morning, you'll head out on a nature excursion the whole family will love—and you don't have to go far to do it. A mere 10-minute drive from the Zona Colonial sits Los Tres Ojos National Park, a nature reserve and network of limestone caves. There are three crystalline lagoons here, known as las tres ojos (the three eyes). You and your family will explore these caves and lagoons throughout the morning.
Day 3: Transfer to Bayahibe, Stop at Cueva de las Maravillas
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
After breakfast, the car will pick your family up for the drive east from Santo Domingo to Bayahibe, one of the most beautiful beaches on the Dominican's south coast.
On your way, you'll stop at Cueva de las Maravillas (Cave of Wonders). The cavern is located in the province of San Pedro de Macoris and measures 2,625-feet (800-m) long and 82-feet (25-m) deep. Inside, there are around 500 ancient pictographs and petroglyphs made by the Taíno people and date back thousands of years. Also, El Espejo de Agua (The Water Mirror) is an artificial lake whose glassy surface reflects the cave's roof.
Once you finish the guided tour, you'll continue to Bayahibe. This stretch of coast offers all the beauty of Punta Cana without the mass crowds. Here, your family will enjoy tranquility combined with cultural activities and adventures. Witness the stunning Parque Nacional del Este, which encompasses the turquoise waters and white-sand beaches of Saona Island.
Upon arrival, you'll all check in to the hotel and relax.
Day 4: Day Trip to Saona Island
You and your family are in for a real treat today, as you'll take a 4-hour trip to Saona Island, located just off the southern coast of the Dominican Republic. This island is famous for crystal-clear waters, beautiful white sand beaches, and offshore coral reefs home to exotic marine life. Coming here is undoubtedly one of the highlights of a stay in the Dominican.
From the port of Bayahibe, you'll hop on a boat and travel to Saona. Upon arrival, enjoy a decadent lunch followed by time to relax on the beach and swim in the crystalline Caribbean waters. If you have the energy, play some beach volleyball or even participate in a meringue class. Then it's time to board a speedboat and explore the coast around the island. Along the way, you'll stop at a place called the Natural Pool. The shallow waters of this sandbar mean you can wade waist-deep in turquoise waters even hundreds of meters from shore. The kids will be spotting the large number of starfish that call this area home.
Day 5: Bayahibe Off-roading 4x4 Tour & Monkeyland VisitAfter breakfast, your transfer will whisk you off on today's 2-hour off-roading ride! Feel the adrenaline of driving your own 4x4 buggy in the Dominican countryside. After the adventure, stop by the Casa de Coco (Coconut House) to learn how coconut oil is produced. You'll also sample organic products like Caribbean fruits, roasted coffee, and cocoa.
Finish the day with a stop at Monkeyland, a natural jungle habitat where your family will interact in close proximity with the park's playful squirrel monkeys. It's a great outing for kids and adults alike, as these are some of the friendliest monkeys in the animal kingdom. Should you choose, you can change the Monkeyland visit to a zip-line adventure over the treetops.