This 10-day itinerary takes you beyond the Dominican Republic's famous beaches to discover an island of diverse landscapes and exciting adventures. Your journey begins in the historic capital of Santo Domingo, where you'll tour America's oldest European settlement. Visit the nearby caverns of Los Tres Ojos, take your pick of watersports in Cabarete, and hike to waterfalls on the Samaná Peninsula.


  • Tour the historic capital of Santo Domingo by bicycle
  • Explore the open-air limestone caverns of Los Tres Ojos National Park
  • Take to Cabarete's beaches to learn how to surf
  • Hike through the jungle to reach the gorgeous El Limón Waterfall

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Santo Domingo, Cycling City Tour Santo Domingo
Day 2 Transfer to Cabarete via Los Tres Ojos National Park Cabarete
Day 3 Surf the Waves in Cabarete Cabarete
Day 4 Seven Waterfalls of Damajagua Adventure & Zipline Cabarete
Day 5 Transfer to Samaná via Playa Grande & Laguna Dudu Samaná
Day 6 Hike to El Limón Waterfall Samaná
Day 7 Free Day in Samaná  Samaná
Day 8 Snorkel Cayo Levantado Samaná
Day 9 Off-Road Quad Adventure Samaná
Day 10 Return to Santo Domingo & Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Santo Domingo, Cycling City Tour

The historic city walls of Santo Domingo

Welcome to Santo Domingo! Upon arrival, your private driver will be waiting to take you to your hotel. After settling in, meet your guide to explore the capital on a cycling tour. Founded in 1496, Santo Domingo is the Dominican Republic's capital and the site of the Americas' first European settlement. On today's tour, you'll see the city from a different perspective as your charismatic local guide reveals interesting facts about the history and culture of the capital.

Explore the fortified historic colonial center, which dates back to the 16th century, and pass highlights like the Cathedral of Santa María la Menor, the Monastery of San Francisco, Fortaleza Ozama, the Hospital San Nicolás de Bari, and Colón Lighthouse

Day 2: Transfer to Cabarete via Los Tres Ojos National Park

See the colorful lakes and caverns of Los Tres Ojos National Park

After breakfast, you'll transfer north to Cabarete (about five hours) stopping to visit Los Tres Ojos National Park first. Located just a few minutes from central Santo Domingo, Los Tres Ojos National Park is a series of open-air limestone caverns, and colorful lakes formed thousands of years ago. There are indications the early Taíno people once inhabited the caves, and it was an important sacred site to the island's Indigenous tribes.

Once in Cabarete, the Caribbean capital of water and adventure sports, you'll check into your hotel. Located in the province of Puerto Plata, very close to Sosúa, this municipality is the best destination in the Dominican Republic for surfing, windsurfing, and kitesurfing. This unique town, nestled in the Bay of Cabarete, is perennially popular for the best waves and the best winds on the entire island.

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Day 3: Surf the Waves in Cabarete

Take to Cabarete's beaches today to learn to surf the waves

Learn to surf or improve your skills with this fun two-hour surfing lesson in Cabarete. Your surfing instructor will give you a full rundown of surfing theory, rules, and the mechanics of wave formation. Paddle out into the warm waters on a provided board, chosen specifically for your skill and body type, to learn to catch a wave. This activity is suitable for both complete novices and accomplished surfers that want to learn from a master. 

Day 4: Seven Waterfalls of Damajagua Adventure & Zipline

Choose your own adventure today—from ziplining to surfing

Your exciting day of adventure begins the moment your guide picks you up at the port and transfers you to Damajagua, a world of intense greenery, cascading waterfalls, and turquoise river pools. Beginning with a moderate 60-minute hike that leads to a summit and where the fun begins, you'll jump, slide, and swim your way back down seven waterfalls to base camp! The tour includes jumps of up to 25 feet (8 m), though the larger ones have walkarounds if you don't feel inclined to make the leap. Then, you'll begin your ziplining adventure, sailing across a waterfall over five ziplines before drying off and enjoying a lunch buffet.

Afterward, your private transfer will take you back to your hotel in Cabarete, where you'll have the rest of the day to explore on your own. 

Day 5: Transfer to Samaná via Playa Grande & Laguna Dudú

Colorful houses in Las Terrenas, Samaná

Today you'll bid Cabarete farewell and transfer east to Samaná, stopping en route at Playa Grande and Laguna Dudú. Playa Grande, as its name implies in Spanish, is a vast stretch of spectacular beach, perfect for taking long walks, sunbathing, or enjoying a plate of local lobster accompanied by a cold beer. Nearby you'll find Laguna Dudú, a remarkable and biodiverse ecosystem where natural tunnels connect two freshwater lakes.

After visiting these two spots, your journey continues to Samaná. Bordered by white-sand beaches, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and forested mountains, Samaná is a peninsula in the northeast of the Dominican Republic known for hosting the highest concentration of coconut palms per square meter in the world.

Popular highlights of the region include Cayo Levantado, a small island in the northeast of Samaná Bay, Cascada Limón, a beautiful waterfall nestled in a natural forest, and the spectacular Los Haitises National Park. After settling into your hotel, the afternoon is free to explore. Start with a walk around the village, where you can stop into the many craft shops for handmade souvenirs, then head to one of the many stunning beaches to soak up some sun.

Day 6: Hike to El Limón Waterfall

Hike or horseback ride your way to the stunning El Limón Waterfall

After breakfast today, you'll set out on an exhilarating hike to El Limón Waterfall. Trek through lush jungle landscapes to reach an idyllic cascade that plunges from the top of the Sierra de Samaná at 130 feet (40 m). At the end of the 1.5-mile (2.5 km) journey, you'll be rewarded with a refreshing dip in the cool water and plenty of free time to enjoy the beautiful surroundings. After making your way back down, finish today's excursion with a traditional Dominican lunch. You can also choose to make the journey on horseback! The rest of the day is free to relax on the beach.

Day 7: Free Day in Samaná

 A quiet beach near Samaná and Cayo Levantado

Today you have a free day to relax at one of Samaná's many beaches or join an optional activity. With so many beaches to choose from, consider heading to Las Terrenas to visit Cosón, Las Ballenas, Las Terrenas, Portillo beaches, and Playa Bonita. Alternatively, if in El Limón, check out its 3-mile (5 km) beach of the same name, just east of Las Terrenas and Portillo. Pass through plantations, fruit trees, and over rural roads to reach Playa Morón, complete with leftover historic cannons. Surf at El Valle, protected by two mountains north of the Samaná Bay, and with few tourists. 

Optional activities may include snorkeling or diving in Samaná, a full-day trip to Playa Rincón, or, depending on the time of year, a whale watching excursion.

Day 8: Snorkel Cayo Levantado

Have fun on a snorkeling excursion off nearby Cayo Levantado

Today's snorkeling experience is a delightful way to spend your day and is suitable for both beginner and experienced snorkelers alike. Explore the underwater world of Samaná at two prime snorkeling spots. The first destination is offshore the island of La Farola, where you'll see some corals, starfish, sea eggs, trumpet fish, and other tropical species. The second spot is the shallow wreck of a ferry which is a real aquarium, with shoals of fish, puffer fish, sergeant fish, damselfish, parrotfish, porcupine fish, and much more.

Day 9: Off-Road Quad Adventure

Dominican Republic - Ride a quad bike on a tour
Ride a quad bike on a fun outing to explore more of the Samaná Peninsula

Today offers a reprieve from the water as you hop aboard your personal ATV and ride through the town of El Limón, across mountains, and along rivers on your way to the area's unspoiled beaches—taking routes best known to locals. Covering destinations like La Cana, Lanza del Norte, and Plata Morón, this off-road adventure introduces you to a side of the island rarely visited by tourists. After a fun morning of exploration, you'll break for lunch before returning to Samaná.

Day 10: Return to Santo Domingo & Depart

Say your goodbyes to Santo Domingo today

After breakfast, your trip draws to a close as your private driver takes you to the airport to catch your departing flight. Safe travels!

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Map of Ultimate Dominican Republic: Santo Domingo, Cabarete & Samaná - 10 Days
Map of Ultimate Dominican Republic: Santo Domingo, Cabarete & Samaná - 10 Days