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Thread: Lago Enriquillo

  1. #1
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    Default Lago Enriquillo

    With the holiday season almost upon us, my thoughts are beginning to focus on a few days travel and one of the places I have always wanted to visit and add to my DR experience is Lago Enriquillo.

    Base from where I travel would be a hotel south of Barahona, so I would welcome advice on how best to plan a long day to visit the lake and it's surroundings, and do wonder if a circumvention of the lake from Neiba to La Descubierta to Jimani and Duverge is realistically possible in a day. Or should I be looking at north side and south side long single day trips?

    Any advice is welcome.......I have my worn 'Rough Guide to DR' for starters.

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    I also want to know but maybe no DR1 reader has been there .

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    I have been there and drove all around the lake in a day, but thing have changed due to the rising water. I was not overly impressed driving around it - I think you really need to do the boat trip to see most of the wildlife but the last time I heard, they were not running. You can contact Ecotour Barahona who do most of the eco tours in the area - not to go with them, but just to ask what the current situation is http://www.ecotourbarahona.com/engli...nriquillo.html

    Personally I much prefer lake Oviedo which is absolutely stunning and there are 2 hour or 4 hour boat rides there.

    Matilda

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matilda View Post
    I have been there and drove all around the lake in a day, but thing have changed due to the rising water. I was not overly impressed driving around it - I think you really need to do the boat trip to see most of the wildlife but the last time I heard, they were not running. You can contact Ecotour Barahona who do most of the eco tours in the area - not to go with them, but just to ask what the current situation is http://www.ecotourbarahona.com/engli...nriquillo.html

    Personally I much prefer lake Oviedo which is absolutely stunning and there are 2 hour or 4 hour boat rides there.

    Matilda
    Thanks.

    The following is posted on Rough Guides website for Lago Enriquillo but maybe this could be out of date..

    Habitat for tens of thousands of tropical birds and protected as Parque Nacional Isla Cabritos, Lago Enriquillo is an enormous 42km-long salt-water lake and slightly larger than the island of Manhattan. At the southern base of the Sierra Neiba, the lake sits at the lowest point in the Caribbean, a full 46m below sea level.

    You can get on the water with one of the boat tours (daily 7.30am, 8.30am and 1pm; 2hr 30min; RD$300–2000, depending on group size) that depart from the park entrance 4km east of La Descubierta, near the lake’s northwestern tip. You’ll be taken to an enormous bird sanctuary filled with flamingos and hundreds of other tropical birds, which collectively form an unforgettable multicoloured spectacle; also a hit are the American crocodiles that inhabit this part of the lake, though you should take one of the morning tours if you want to see them – guides get into the water and steer them past the boat for a closer view. From there it’s on to the arid, iguana-infested Isla Cabritos in the lake’s centre, a sandy island covered with cactus where the half-tame rhinoceros iguanas crowd around you in the hope of being fed.


    Read more: http://www.roughguides.com/destinati...#ixzz3uyHSiwnw



    It does seem that La Descubierta is the place to head for and a full trip around the lake is not needed. My written older Rough Guide says the following:

    La Descubierta itself is a rather sleepy desert outpost that contains a small somewhat inexplicable oasis....an oak forest fed by a cold sulphur spring.......There are a couple of short paths both of which lead to Las Barrias the Sulphur spring. Another minor local attraction is Cueva de las Caritas....holds dozens of chiseled Taino faces....it's entrance 6km east of the town on the lake road.

    East of La Descubierta......most Dominicans make an afternoon of circling L E though it is hard to understand why; the area is a barren limestone desert and most of the towns are rather bleak.


    I have also been following a few videos on You Tube and Laguna del Rincon (Cabral)and the Neiba valley seems worth a drive by.

    Perhaps.....Baoruca hotel and north and take highway 46 south of Barahona, visit Laguna del Rincon, cross the valley to Neiba and onto La Decubierta for a lake boat trip etc and return. Of course the road south from Cabral opens the way to the magnetic pole. Maybe another day and yet another day with a boat trip on Lake Olviedo.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ky1VmG3pCjI Laguna Cabral, Neiba Valley and LE

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    This video prepared recently prior to Climate Change conference has some nice video work of the lake prior to dialogue

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ib6_a2h6Zs0

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    I redid the DK Top Ten Guide to the DR this year and put in it that it was only advised to go to Lake Enriquillo with a guided tour as some of the roads were impassable. This is what I replaced the copy about Enriquillo with:

    Day trip to Laguna Oviedo
    Morning
    Set off from Barahona taking the coast road south. Drive slowly along the hairpin bends with high mountains on the right and the Caribbean Sea glistening to the left. Just as you enter Paraiso (see p 111) you will see a turn off to the left which is a lookout point where you can take breathtaking photographs of the pebbled beach way down below. Continue on to Los Patos, site of the shortest river in the world at only 61 meters long. Turn into the parking area on the left and sit at a wooden table by the side of the crystal clear river, full of little fish, and watch it flow lazily into the sea. Here you can have an early lunch of freshly caught fish with crispy plantain chips known as tostones.
    After lunch continue on the same coast road all the way to Oviedo.
    Afternoon
    At the park office on the left, easily spotted, you can take a boat tour of Laguna Oviedo. The tours last for between 2 and 4 hours and cost from US$60 to US$90 per boat. The laguna has more than 24 small islands, homes to heron, stern, golden spoonbill, frigate birds, white egrets, pelicans and of course red flamingos. The island also house colonies of Rhinoceros Iguana.
    When the tour is over, retrace your journey back towards Barahona, going past Los Patos and then turn right into another famous beach where the river meets the sea, San Rafael. Here you can bathe in the clear waters of the river, while sipping a rum and coke before heading back to Barahona.

    Matilda

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    Circumnavigated the Lake five years ago. Left early from just south of Barahona and took the southern part first. In my opinion this was a mistake as once you pass the split (where the statue of Enriquillo is) there are a couple of nice towns but then many miles of the same scenery before you reach Jimani. The border crossing was filthy and we couldn't get out of Jimani fast enough.. lol We stopped and had lunch at la Descubierta and a swim in the balniera there, which was most enjoyable. Trouble was we arrived at the park entrance after the boats stopped for the day We did enjoy seeing all the rhino iguanas and had quite a photo shoot with them. To sum it up I'd say take the Northern side and forget the other. A nice side trip for the return east would be a visit to San Jose de Ochoa. Beautiful town with friendly folks and very good coffee and food. Hope you get to knock it off your list, it's well worth the visit. Ben

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    I was there 2 years ago (or something like that).
    Stayed in Duverge (coming from Barahona) and didnt go further - stopped way before Jimani. Overall that area (Duverge) is poor and Lake itself make it kind of strange...
    it gives it a some kind of prehistoric feeling, like from milions years ago ;-) - you may almost expect dinosaurs slowly appearing on the horizon... (nah, i wasnt smoking dominican weed that time)
    i agree with what Matilda said - probably to "enjoy" the lake more you need to get to the island located on the lake with some tour...and watch the reptiles and birds and whatever turns you on ;-)
    Those lakes in southern - western region are all a little smelly, salty and muddy...ideal for reptiles.... but for humans ? maybe for few hours visit.... whatever you like
    I liked San Juan de la Maguana better than San Jose de Ocoa...and the road access is also much easier over there (at least it was like that in 2013....) and there is also nice lake near San Juan ! ;-) the city itself looks kind of developed (as for dominican standards)
    Duverge and Lago Enriquillo
    and just few photos of Dominican Lakes...http://dominicanfun.net/photo-galler...ican-republic/
    I dont care that much for iguanas haha... I remember one time when this reptile (lizard-dragon ?) was crossing the road somewhere near Azua when i was driving on 110 cc bike ;-) could be a little problematic for both of us, luckily we both went our own ways

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  13. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by robbiee View Post
    I was there 2 years ago (or something like that).
    Stayed in Duverge (coming from Barahona) and didnt go further - stopped way before Jimani. Overall that area (Duverge) is poor and Lake itself make it kind of strange...
    it gives it a some kind of prehistoric feeling, like from milions years ago ;-) - you may almost expect dinosaurs slowly appearing on the horizon... (nah, i wasnt smoking dominican weed that time)
    i agree with what Matilda said - probably to "enjoy" the lake more you need to get to the island located on the lake with some tour...and watch the reptiles and birds and whatever turns you on ;-)
    Those lakes in southern - western region are all a little smelly, salty and muddy...ideal for reptiles.... but for humans ? maybe for few hours visit.... whatever you like
    I liked San Juan de la Maguana better than San Jose de Ocoa...and the road access is also much easier over there (at least it was like that in 2013....) and there is also nice lake near San Juan ! ;-) the city itself looks kind of developed (as for dominican standards)
    Duverge and Lago Enriquillo
    and just few photos of Dominican Lakes...http://dominicanfun.net/photo-galler...ican-republic/
    I dont care that much for iguanas haha... I remember one time when this reptile (lizard-dragon ?) was crossing the road somewhere near Azua when i was driving on 110 cc bike ;-) could be a little problematic for both of us, luckily we both went our own ways
    Thanks for the insight 'robbiee'

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    Planning on a trip myself next week or 2 to Barahona and a day trip to Lake Enriquillo, What hotel do you guys reccomend in
    Barahona??? And possible a night down in Perdonales

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