One of the most popular tourist destinations in the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic boasts all the best ingredients for an idyllic vacation: crystal clear waters, sandy beaches, evenings filled with merengue and dark rum, and a world-class community of resorts. But in this geographically diverse nation, which occupies the eastern half of the island of Hispaniola, there's so much more tropical rain forests, mangrove swamps, vast desert expanses, not to mention the amazing array of opportunities for ecotourism and adventure travel.
In this fully updated edition of the guide, intrepid traveler and Dominican Republic expert Christopher J. Baker takes you on a fascinating tour of this up-and-coming eco-destination. Beginning in the bustling, historic capital city of Santo Domingo, Baker moves on to the southeast, known for the resort zones of Punta Cana and Bavaro, remote beaches, and sugar plantations. Then it's on to the spectacular, underdeveloped Semana Peninsula, famous for its whale-watching, and to the north coast, with seemingly unending beaches and "what a great life" atmosphere. Christopher Columbus's first sight of the New World was upon these shores. Another chapter explores the Valle el Cibao and the central cordillera in the Dominican Republic's mountainous interior, complete with nightlife-bustling Santiago, farmlands that produce some of the world's best cigars, and endless rain forest laced with hiking trails, and finally to the southwest, land of the Taino people, the old sugar-processing town of Barahona, wildlife- rich Lago Enriquillo, and magnificent beaches.
As in all the Traveler guides, the National Geographic Traveler: Dominican Republic includes many detailed close-ups on subjects particular to the destination, in this case including cigars, shipwrecks, and amber. Guided walks introduce historic Santo Domingo and Puerto Plata, while guided drives include a ramble around Lake Enriquillo and a loop around the gorgeous Semana Peninsula.
Christopher P. Baker has established a career as a travel writer, photographer, and lecturer. He has written several guidebooks about Cuba and Havana, as well as ones on Jamaica, The Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, and California. He is author of the National Geographic Traveler: Costa Rica (2000), the National Geographic Traveler: Cuba (2007), National Geographic Traveler: Dominican Republic (2008), and National Geographic Adventure Press's Mi Moto Fidel: Motorcycling through Castro's Cuba (2000).
The award-winning National Geographic Traveler has been enhanced with engaging new features and a contemporary redesign. Each guide begins with an introduction that enables you to sample a bit of the culture, history, and attractions before you go and plan the trip based on your own interests and length of stay.
Immerse yourself in active, in-country "Experiences" and "Off-the-Beaten-Path Excursions" you won't find anywhere else.
Other new features, such as "Insider Tips" from National Geographic photographers, writers, and experts, and "Not-To-Be-Missed" lists ensure that each visit will be memorable.
The guides' design has been simplified, opened up, and enhanced with easy-to-read tinted sections. Gorgeous color photographs, high-quality maps, and the popular walking and driving tours are still highlights of our crisp, new look.