Apr 19, 2012

Love me some Bayahibe - Part I

I fell in love with one stoplight towns back in my Hallsville, TX days, where old men asked "How do?" and Bar-be-que Country upped the bar on great bar-be-que, where a gun behind the counter was pretty normal, and when SONIC came to town (pre three stoplight additions) we knew we had reached the pinnacle of small town living.  I will ALWAYS love that place.   Always.  (Sonic, yes, but more so Hallsville :)


However, these here days are different in the D.R., but there is no shortage of no stoplight towns.  My new favorite, recently discovered Dominican small town is Bayahibe.  While it is a tourist destination, mainly for day trips booked from other tourists destinations, it remains charming and authentic.  It is basically a launching site for various excursions to remote islands.  There is a big bus parking lot in the middle of the town that is full during the day, but is vacant after 5 pm-ish when all the tourists are bussed back to their original location.  Anyhoo, we had THE BEST TIME there!



After 5 hours on the road with a van loaded with kids + grandma, getting lost in Santo Domingo, having our van passenger side window fall into the door numerous times, getting stuck behind a political rally (which means LOUD political music and advertisements, a caravan of cars/trucks/motos waving the political party color, and a whole lot of hoopla,


We were very happy to see this . . . .


The little bay is empty during the day because all the boats and catamarans are out on excursions, but at night there are literally hundreds of boats.  The town swells with tourists and then quickly dissipates to its normal population as the tourists are bussed off into the sunset.


We decided it would be sad to drive all that distance and NOT go on an excursion. THIS was a MOST EXCELLENT DECISION!   Grandma and I sat on the beach on the first day watching all the boats and catamarans head off into the morning sun on the excursions.  We picked out the boat we would want (a big fat catamaran) and then in the evening went into town in search of a tour company.  We could not match up boats to companies as we thought we might be able to, but we ended up on a really awesome tour, an awesome boat with an excellent guide!

There were literally hundreds of boats that passed along the shoreline, and you can see the variety of options offered.  We ended up on the boat closest to the edge of the photo - a very smooth ride!  


After being offered a sweet deal in the bus parking lot by a local Dominican making promises of safety vests and a smooth ride, we (me and grandma) decided it would be worth the $ to go with a real tour company: Pro Excursions.  We had a MOST EXCELLENT guide name Rino, a frenchman with a great sense of humor who flip flopped gracefully between speaking french and english on the tour. He was truly fabulous with the kids (Little Pickle KNEW that HE REALLY LIKED HER!)





Our excursion, which started at 9 am and ended at 6:30 pm took us into a national park, along the mangrove trees, over a colony of starfish, to a small island that is at the edge of a reef where the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean meet, and to Isla Saona, a gorgeous island where we had an excellent buffet . . .  which will lead us to part II of this post - otherwise I would have way too many photos and this blog might not ever load. To be continued . . . .

1 comment :

  1. This is awesome! I love the pictures. Can't wait for the next installment. -Jennifer S.

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