Tuesday, December 8, 2009
In all honesty, we chose to go to the Dominican mainly because the tickets there were much more affordable than any other neighboring island and after the Philippines we just weren’t dying to island hop. We had looked at going to Punta Cana, but our apartment is just steps from the beach so it wasn’t a huge draw. Eventually we settled on going to the capital, Santo Domingo.
I have to say, we could not have been more pleasantly surprised. Granted we did no research and knew nothing about it but I guess we had expected it to be like old San Juan or maybe not even as nice. We had no idea the rich, rich history of Santo Domingo and the myriad of “firsts” we were going to encounter.
Did you know that Christopher’s Columbus’ final resting place is in Santo Domingo? Or that the first street built in the new world was is in Santo Domingo? Or the first Catholic Cathedral? Or the first sundial?
You get the point.
Anyway, we did a half-day tour that turned into an all day tour on Saturday and really enjoyed ourselves. That night we all went to dinner at a restaurant actually set in a natural cave. The atmosphere was wonderful and except for our poor choice of flaming Dominican hunch-punch, I’m glad we went.
Our crazy tour guide, Bill, had told us there would be a merengue festival that evening on our streets but sadly it wasn’t until Sunday night :(
Sunday we had lunch back in the old city and tooled around the few shops that were open before heading back to San Juan.
I have to say it felt pretty great at immigration once we reached the States…last time this year!
This weekend we’ve decided to stay put again. We’ll probably make a day trip out to the Camuy Caves or just relax at the beach by our apartment. We’ve got to start organizing the suitcases and packing because we’re going to be heading home before you know it!