Closed for the holidays


An aspiring photographer at work?An aspiring photographer at work?An aspiring photographer at work?

I know it takes practice, but what was I thinking here? It does document the appearance of stray dogs.
The blog post really deserves more than one entry. The Dominican Republic was, for me, two experiences. One of culture, and one of convenience. And it is confirmed, I will take culture anyday over unlimited buffets and an open bar.

Andrea and I spent half our Spring break trip in the capitol of the Dominican Republic, Santo Domingo, pretending we were NY times travel writers and we were researching our previous article title, "36 Hours in Santa Domingo" . We followed our guide to a T. Somethings were now closed or lacked their previous allure, but overall it was a perfect guide to a few days in the country's capital. The food was amazing. Andrea with her mastery of languages sweet talked every waiter in to giving us the non-tourist special. So we were treated to off the menu delights and truly felt we were getting a true slice of Dominican culture. While, overall we found the city to be sleepy, the reason may in fact have been that everything was closed for the Easter holiday. I found the people and culture one of the most appealing in the Caribbean.

For the second half of the trip we headed to the beaches in
Free tourFree tourFree tour

We had read in the travel guide about "free tours". Here we are making the most of our free tour before being asked for money, which we did not give enough.
Puerto Plata.

The ride north, I was anticipating more of the same culture, yummy food, and kind-hearted Dominicans. And the scenery on our local bus ride did not disappoint.

The Dominican Republic was beautiful, exactly what I was looking for on our mid-winter Cleveland getaway. However, the all-inclusive resort that was definitely affordable forgot to include anything related to the Dominican culture. On our first night we tried to get a reservation at the Dominican restaurant, to recreate more of that delicious food from the capitol, but were in fact told that the Dominican restaurant would be closed for the entire portion of our stay. It was as if we had left the country, but the we could not leave the resort, unless of course for a $40 taxi ride. Much more than the $5 we spent to get to the resort. While I understand the allure and benefits of an all-inclusive resort, this particular one in the DR was not for us. I would rather pay per drink; per meal and enjoy the inclusiveness of being able to experience the culture from which I traveled so far to see, not to have unlimited access french fries and
Santa DominigoSanta DominigoSanta Dominigo

Wonderful town, a bit lacking in livelihood, overall a great way to see the country.
fruity drinks.

We did sneak away to the 27 waterfalls near Puerta Plata, but we couldn't take any cameras, so the best part of the trip was left undocumented, but here is a youtube, that shows a similiar experience. Just image our faces amongst the others. It was an awesome excursion and actually worth the $70 price tag. We were again fed our beloved Dominican cuisine and given a chance to see some local villages, local artisans and local scenery. But that is why I travel. Which for me was much better than seeing the long line waiting for the buffet to open, again.

Additional photos below
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Walks on the BeachWalks on the Beach
Walks on the Beach

Just outside Puerto Plata.
Scenes from the DRScenes from the DR
Scenes from the DR

Really a beautiful country.

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