Experience Caribbean paradise from every angle—from up high in the mountains to down low on a white-sand beach. Strap in for nine days of exploring, eating, dancing, and hiking your way through your new favorite island.
Admiring the many murals in Santiago
Exploring the oldest European settlement in the Western Hemisphere
Riding the rapids of the Yaque del Norte River
Sipping a fruity drink, gazing out at the Caribbean Sea
What you'll get
Round-trip flights & airport transfers
8 nights in handpicked accommodations
Expert Tour Director
White water rafting excursion
Cigar factory tour
Cayo Arena snorkeling tour
- Day 1: Fly to Santo Domingo
Board your flight to Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic. You’ve got over a week of adventure ahead of you. So sit back, get some rest, and start quietly chanting “DR” to the confused person next to you on the plane.
- Meet an EF representative at the airport.
- Transfer to your accommodation and check in.
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
- Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive.
- Day 2: Tour Santo Domingo + Welcome Dinner
Fetch your cocktail umbrellas, and throw on your comfiest walking shoes; this city is one part Caribbean paradise, one part bustling urban hub. And if you’ve ever considered combining rum, red wine, and honey, but been too nervous that people would judge you, Santo Domingo is the place for you. Locals combine these ingredients to create Mamajuana, a strong drink considered by some to be an aphrodisiac. Get the candles ready.
- Join your Tour Director on a tour of Santo Domingo.
- Wander through the Colonial Zone—founded in 1498, it’s the oldest European settlement in the Western Hemisphere.
- Open your third eye at Los Tres Ojos, an expansive cave with three lakes and plenty of stalactites and stalagmites for all you cave nerds.
- Enjoy a Welcome Dinner of local cuisine and drinks with fellow travelers at a local spot.
- Day 3: Travel to Santiago + Street Art Tour and Karaoke
Hop on the bus to Santiago, the second-largest city in the Dominican Republic and a tropical hotspot for Caribbean cigars and rum.
- Make your way to Santiago by bus.
- Participate in a street art walking tour where art and urban exploration combine.
- Toast to the DR with an included beer at a local brewery before showing off your karaoke skills.
- Day 4: Cigar Factory Tour + Whitewater Rafting
Get ready for an epic day in the Dominican Republic. First stop, a cigar factory. Next stop, adventure—a whitewater rafting trip you’ll never forget.
- Visit the oldest Dominican cigar factory to learn how the pros do it.
- Answer adventure’s call and head to the Yaque del Norte River, the longest in the DR.
- Learn the basics of whitewater rafting from a local guide, and take on several different classes of rapids.
- Enjoy an included lunch.
- Day 5: Travel to Cabarete + Cayo Arena Snorkeling + Dinner
After the previous day’s non-stop action, slow things down a bit at the resort town of Cabarete. It’s right along the beach, only has one major street, and is the watersport capital of the country. Kitesurfers, windsurfers, and even boring ol’ regular surfers hit the waves all day every day. But don’t worry—there’s plenty of room for non-watersport activities, too.
- Make your way to Cayo Arena, an islet and snorkeler’s paradise off the coast.
- Snorkel and swim with your new friends—the fish, of course.
- Put on your relaxation hat and travel by bus to Cabarete.
- Spend the evening doing exactly what you want to do.
- Day 6: Tour Cabarete + Macorix House of Rum
Time for a day of exploring! After snapping the perfect pic (looking at you, Instagrammers), you’ll see a Spanish fortress that protected the city of Puerto Plata from pirates. *Cue “Pirates of the Caribbean” music*. Don’t forget an excursion to Macorix House of Rum to finish off the day.. and finish off some rum!
- Hop on the bus for a trip around the surrounding area with your Tour Director.
- Visit Fortaleza San Felipe, a Spanish fortress built in the 1500s.
- Travel to Macorix Rum Tour in Puerto Plata for a tour of the museum, an explanation of their history and how the rum is made, and a tasting of different rums they make.
- Day 7: Relax in Cabarete + Optional Surf's Up!
Another day in paradise, another day to soak up all the fun in the sun. Continue watching the surfers drop in, hang ten, and rip (#sickbro). And if you’re really into it, ask them for their tips and tricks. If not, just sit back, relax, and enjoy the beach.
- Hit the beach for one final day of saying “life’s a beach” to everyone around you.
- Lounge on the beach, or simply be present in this beautiful destination fit for a postcard.
- Spend the rest of the afternoon as you please, on the white-sand beaches of the Dominican Republic.
- Partake in a typical Dominican dance lesson, complete with a traditional Caribbean dinner and plenty of hip-shaking once you hit the dance floor.
Surf's Up! (extra cost)
Time to get like, totally radical, dudes and dudettes! Lend your ear to a local pro surfer for a lesson, then try it for yourself. You’ll be riding those gnarly waves before you know it.
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
- Day 8: Travel to Santo Domingo + Farewell Dinner
Take your suitcase—and your new tan lines—back to where it all started in Santo Domingo. This is it, people. Your last full day in the DR. Once you’re back in Santo Domingo, get out there and soak in as much of the country’s capital as you can.
- Take a bus to Santo Domingo, enjoying views of the Dominican countryside along the way.
- Check in to your accommodation and get ready for a final night out.
- Cool off with a cold beer or cocktail at a local bar—it won’t be hard to find one.
- Share some last laughs (and maybe shed a few tears) at an included farewell dinner with the group.
- Day 9: Fly Home
Translation: Goodbye, friends! Your next destination awaits—home. Before you head to the airport, enjoy your last few moments together. Take one more group photo. Grab that final drink. (Fine, maybe a couple of drinks.) But this isn’t goodbye. It’s “See you later.” The only question is, where?
EXTEND YOUR TRIP 2 WAYS
1. Double the fun
A lot of our trips line up back to back! Give us a call—we can help you add another and save big while you're at it.
2. Go ahead or stay behind
Extending your trip is easy! During checkout, you'll have the option to fly to (or from) the gateway of your choice for an additional fee. We'll adjust your flights accordingly, but you'll be responsible to take care of your transportation, hotels, and other logistics outside of tour.
Note: Depending on your desired gateways, additional fees may apply.
Traveling with us helps the EF community plant trees, at no extra cost to you.
Overall rating: 5 out of 5
Based on 45 authentic traveler reviews
Most fun I’ve had in years!Anonymous, traveled Jul.. 2021
If you’re nervous about going with strangers, don’t be! Everyone was SO nice and by the end of the trip we all felt like family! The Dominican Republic is an extremely beautiful country and the food is to die for. Book this trip! You won’t regret it.
The DR is a very special placeCourtney, traveled Jul.. 2021
So much fun and adventure packed into 8 days! Whitewater rafting, surfing, ziplining, snorkeling, swimming under a waterfall, learning bachata and merengue, karaoke. The list goes on. It’s great to go in with an open mind and heart so you can really try everything! The Dominican Republic is full of kind and fun people, rich culture, great food, and beautiful... See more
Dominican AdventureCara, traveled Nov.. 2022
Everything is so amazing from the beaches to the mountains. Make sure to request carol as your tour guide, you won’t regret it!!!
First Time AbroadBrianna, traveled Nov.. 2022
This was my first trip abroad and it was so much fun that I already have the next one booked. Carol made everything move so smoothly and helped make the trip a blast with her sense of humor and knowledge of the area. Definitely book with her.