The Dominican Republic’s beautiful Samana Peninsula offers something for everyone, the country’s tourism ministry says.
Samana is nestled among the Caribbean mountains on the Dominican Republic’s northeast coast and surrounded by Samana Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. A favored destination of eco-tourists and naturalists, the “off-the-beaten-path” peninsula boasts unspoiled beaches, coral reefs, mountain waterfalls and tropical forests.
“Samana is graced with exquisite beauty, and is one of our national treasures,” says Magaly Toribio, the Dominican Republic’s vice minister of international promotion. “You may leave Samana, but Samana will never leave you.”
Samana has various distinct towns and attractions. Towns include:
Santa Barbara de Samana: The provincial capital, Santa Barbara de Samana ― which is on the southern side of the peninsula ― is a popular base for whale-watching excursions or day trips to Cayo Levantado, a charming island in the bay. Samana’s Malecon, or beachfront strip, is a center of activity featuring outdoor cafes and small shops.
Las Galeras: Las Galeras is an idyllic destination for romance-seekers. Located on the tip of the peninsula, its main beach offers a beautiful location for sunning, swimming or strolling along the beachfront’s stores and restaurants.
Las Terrenas: Las Terrenas offers a variety of accommodations to fit any style or budget including small boutiques to low-key beachfront hotels to deluxe all-inclusive resorts. Also, this busy town offers a mixture of distinctive restaurants, bars, shopping and a vibrant nightlife.
The Samana Peninsula’s attractions include:
Whale Watching: Each winter, Samana draws thousands of Humpback Whales to mate and breed in its protected waters, according to the World Wildlife Fund.
Salto el Limon Waterfall: Considered the most spectacular of the Dominican Republic’s many waterfalls, Salto el Limon boasts a 150-foot cascade of water falling into a large swimming hole.
Parque Nacional Los Haitises: Located south of Samana, this national park has more than 100 species of birds and mammals and dozens of caves bearing pre-Columbian Taino art.
Scuba Diving: Several scuba diving and snorkeling tours are available to take tourists to accessible dive and snorkeling sites, such as the Las Galeras underwater park.
Nightlife: With numerous beach restaurants and discotheques that carry on all night long, visitors can interact with locals while enjoying the area’s gastronomy or dancing the night away to pulsating beats of the merengue, bachata and salsa.
Shopping: In addition to souvenir shops along the peninsula, several small shopping centers exist in Las Terrenas.
Beaches: The Samana Peninsula boasts several magnificent beaches, with sugar-colored sand lapped by turquoise water.
Visit the Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism’s official Web site at: www.GoDominicanRepublic.com or call 1-888-374-6361 for more information.