Boca Chica to Samana Whale Watch
The ride to Samana from Boca Chica takes 2 1/2 hours on the Autopista. I just replied to another post about "First trip to Samana in 3 years", but also wanted to mention here that you cannot use US dollars to pay for the tolls, so make sure you have pesos.
It was a beautiful ride through the Dominican countryside. Once you exit the autopista Juan Pablo, the roads are filled with pot-holes, more like "pot-craters", so drive carefully! On our way back to Boca Chica, a couple of kilometers before getting on the autopista, we blew out a tire! Hugh hole in the tire. A local person on a motorbike pulled over to help us, and we were more than happy to tip him. He also directed us to a "Gomero" who was very fair. We had to buy another tire because there way no way to repair the one we blew out! Very fair price, and he brought out plastic chairs for us to sit on while we waited for the repair to be done.
Between the help we received from the person who helped with the tire, the fair Gomero, and the local Dominican driver who helped us pay our toll in pesos, we returned home with such a good feeling about the Dominican Republic.
To the toll collector who bribed us, shame on you -- you are a disgrace to your country! I understand that if you were in my country, you would not be able to pay a toll in pesos -- but the difference is that since the DR has so many tourists, it would have been helpful to have a sign that directed us to change money to pesos before entering the autopista.
OK, enough of that -- the DR is a beautiful country with beautiful people = we whale watched on a tour from Moto Marino -- $60 for the boat ride, a few hours at Cayo Levantado, including lunch. It was a beautiful day. From what we could see, Kim from Victoria Marine offers more narration on her tours, but she was not offering a trip to Cayo Levantado the day we toured. If we had more days, I would have liked to spend a couple of days in the Samana area and visit some of the other beaches.
I also took the new highway in August and got a flat tire. It is amazing how people just pull over to help and are not looking for anything in return.
The people in the DR are amazing. I forgot to mention that when we pulled our car off the road when we got the flat tire, a young woman with a baby came out of her house and offered to make us coffee while the men were changing the tire.
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