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This article from MetroNews.Ca  to read full story click here

Puerto Plata: Authentic Dominican Lifestyle, Day and Night !!

You won’t get bored in Puerto Plata! If you think Puerto Plata boils down to a couple of beaches, you are totally wrong! The region of Puerto Plata and its surroundings offer you the opportunity to relax while enjoying a wide variety of activities and places to visit, without squandering your savings!

Puerto Plata may not be the perfect place for those who only want to spend a full week sunbathing on some endless white sandy beach, but you can still find some astonishing beaches.

Visiting Town
Despite the constant development of Puerto Plata, its downtown streets remain largely unchanged, retaining its typical Caribbean flavour. If your hotel is close to the city, take this opportunity to walk down the streets, admire the small wooden colonial houses and enjoy the authentic Dominican life! We suggest a visit to the Amber Museum, which contains the finest collection of jewellery in the country. We also strongly recommend you to visit the various craft markets (Nuevo Mercado), where you will find a multitude of souvenirs to bring back to your loved ones.

After you have walked through the city, shopped in the craft markets and visited the Amber Museum, a visit to Fort San Felipe is a must! Built in the sixteenth century and named in honor of King Philip II of Spain, the fort once used to protect the city from enemy attacks. It is said that it also served as a prison. Let the people of the community tell you all about it! For those who love beautiful landscapes, a visit to Parque Nacional Isabel de Torres is strongly recommended. If you wish, a cable car will transport you to the top of the mountain, where you can admire a magnificent panorama of the region. You'll also see a statue representing Christ the Redeemer, which recalls the one found in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Getting out in Puerto Plata
Puerto Plata offers a wide choice of restaurants, bars and discos that stay open until sunrise. Those who like to spend an evening at the Casino won’t want to miss the Ocean World Casino; an aquatic-themed 4-storey building where you will find 5-star restaurants, spectacular ocean views, live music, gaming, as well as the tropical and exotic Las-Vegas-Style “Bravissimo Show”. Breathtaking! Moreover, "Ocean World" is not only a casino but also an entertainment complex where you will find a marine park and several other attractions. Take advantage of an excursion to spend a day swimming with dolphins or feeding sharks!

Many other villages and small towns near Puerto Plata are worth visiting. Cabarete, the capital of windsurfing; Sosua and its crystal clear waters; Playa Dorada and its luxury hotels, just to name a few.

Sosua is a small village located 25 km (15 mi) west of Puerto Plata. For those who love beautiful white sandy beaches, Sosua’s beach is one of the most beautiful in the Dominican Republic with its crystal clear waters. The city has experienced a major tourism development and offers a wide range of possibilities in terms of catering, hotels and sports activities. The Jewish Museum and Synagogue are must-sees.

Cabarete, a small village on the west coast, 40 km (25 mi) from Puerto Plata, is known as "the capital of wind surfing”, and not without reason. We can practice several sports such as kite sailing, windsurfing, surfing and wakebord. Located near a coral reef, Kitebeach is particularly popular to practice such sports. If you want a glimpse of authentic Dominican life, you must visit the small village of Callejon, on the inland.

The Excursions
Puerto Plata offers such an impressive variety of excursions that it would be quite impossible to name them all ... Here are a few of them:
Rafting – Hop on a raft and enjoy the cool waters of the Yaque del Norte, the longest river in the Caribbean. Our professional guides will take you through canyons, rapids and rarely seen spots! Action and nature in a once in a lifetime adventure!
Magical Nights - A night to remember! Relax and enjoy a lobster or prime rib dinner. After desert you will be treated to the tropical rhythms and astonishing costumes that will take you on an enchanted journey through the Caribbean. Then, spend some time at the casino or dance the night away at the disco…

Useful information
Language and Currency: The official language is Spanish and the main currency is the Dominican Peso (DOP). The U.S. dollar and Euro are accepted, but we suggest you pay in pesos when you go to small town shops. You can use your preferred currency to pay for excursions.  
Passport and tourist card: It is strongly recommended that all Canadians be in possession of a valid Canadian passport while abroad. However, for direct air travel to the Dominican Republic, Canadian tourists are only required to be in possession of valid official photo identification (such as a driver's licence) and proof of citizenship (such as a birth certificate). Yet, if you make a transit in the United States, the passport is required.
Airport Taxes: Canadians entering the Dominican Republic must purchase a tourist card, at a cost of $10 US. A departure tax of $20 US per person is payable when you leave the country. However, those fees are often included in most all inclusive packages; please enquire.
Vaccines: It is recommended but not mandatory to receive a vaccine for hepatitis (A and B) before traveling to the Dominican Republic. If you plan on doing forest excursions, it is also recommended to take a preventive treatment against malaria, but some areas are more at risk than others (Punta Cana, for example). Ask a professional before leaving Canada.
The essentials: We recommend you bring a good mosquito repellent if you plan on doing Safari-like excursions. Also, don’t forget your sunscreen!
To bring back: Take this opportunity to bring back jewellery made of amber and larimar, leather goods, paintings, liquid vanilla, rum, cigars, coffee, and of course, Merengue & Bachata CDs!
Insurance: Don’t take any chances; for a few dollars, you can purchase medical travel insurance, and for a little extra you can also get the Trip Cancellation insurance !

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