Down south with the humble goddess.

Pib

Goddess
Jan 1, 2002
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We left Santo Domingo on Sat at about 11:30 AM, after I had been called about 30 times and I finally had to drag myself out of bed while questioning my own sanity for doing so. But, oh well, I packed my bags, got some snacks good rhyme and south we went.

I had never been this far south, and being that when I had gone southwest I always did the driving I hadn't paid much attention to it. First Ban?, said to be the cleanest town in DR. I wouldn't argue that. The town was cute, quiet, and the houses were colorful indeed. It is thriving with activity and it is obviously a wealthy town. We stopped there and had lunch. Dominican food of course, washed down by cold Presidentes. We got funnier by the minute. I felt dozy and raised the motion of going back to Santo Domingo and have a siesta. I was booed.

Back on the road we headed for Azua, next on the line. It is smaller than Ban?. Tropical dessert vegetation, goats on the roadside. Somebody in the back suggested we hit one and take it home, after all "you don't leave the victim on the road". I feel better as now I am not the only one that has been booed. Azua passes by and the next town is Barahona.

To get to Barahona we have to pass a mountain range. Sometimes, obviously, we had to go up on a steep road. We make jokes on how we are now using extra hamsters to spin the wheels of the engine on a stretch of the road. Some of these hamsters I am sure had never worked.

The vegetation changes dramatically to tropical forest as we drive on a mountain range along the seaside. The view is breathtaking, between looking at the deep green mountains and the aqua of the ocean I've developed a neck ache. We pass villages of fishermen where people seem happy.

We finally get to Barahona, a clean cute town. It is a fairly big town by the sea. We go on a hunt for a hotel, silly us didn't have a reservation anywhere. Now I am an expert on all the hotels in Barahona. Let's see, we were bumped from Hotel Caribe (nice and "adequate" right in town in front of the ocean) because it was full. Bumped from Hotel Gran Marques (new and very cute) because it was full. We refused to stay in Barcelo Hotel because it looked like a typical all-inclusive, you know the drift. We laughed at the "style" of Hotel Pontevedra because it was the exact copy of a roadside love motel. But it was clean and cute. Went to hotel-something-or-the-other who had the weirdest swimming pool we've seen. We laughed at the looks of Hotel Gloria (as cheap as it gets) and at the name of Hotel Los Hijos de Dindo (the name says it all). We finally ended in Casa Bonita.
On top of a hill out looking the ocean, they have 12 "huts" that look like the dwellings in the typical Dominican campo. Very cute and "exotic". The view is breathtaking.

We decided that we were just a bunch of sloths and that we had already have too much excitement for the day. So by the swimming pool we drank beer, and had dinner. I am tired. I go to bed by 8:00, some decided to go to Barahona and see if they can fish a few girls. Good riddance I say.

At 8:00 AM someone pounds on my door, WTF?! :mad: Leave me alone is Sunday! These people are shameless. I had the coldest shower I've ever taken. I am sure they heard the screams down in Barahona. That surely woke me up. We have a hearty breakfast, check out and west we go again.

Next town in the line is Pedernales, with an assortment of villages on the way. We stop to see a salt water lagoon on the Jaragua Reserve. The guide gives us a lengthy but interesting explanation of the fauna and flora of the lagoon. It is so salty (3 times saltier than the ocean) that only two species of fish survive there. In its more than 1.5 square kms (I think it was) there are many small islands where many species have found their home.

On the shore a bunch of kids are playing. Like blond haired "Cac?" (big head, in Spanish), who insisted that it was his real name, or chubby Kenya, with lots of colorful braids on her head. My favorite was 2 year old David, chubby, cute and wearing no pants. The smile in his face proves that nothing makes a guy happier than walking with the crown jewels bathed with the sea breeze. ;) Giving away bags of grapes made us a few friends among the kids.

Back on the way we get lost looking for a gas station in Enriquillo and have to go thru the town market, where Haitians are selling trinkets and shoes. Back to the road we make a detour to see Bahia de las Aguilas. Unfortunately a road slide prevented us from getting there. We tried to hike, but the blazing sun and a some pale skinned wimps made us head back. Pedernales, here we go.

We get to Pedernales. The sun is as bright as it gets, it is hot, and apparently people are taking a siesta in their houses. We go around and round, until we get to the Dominican Haitian border. Nothing to see and some are not carrying their documents, so we didn't even try to ask if we could cross. We are hot and hungry (air conditioner is running at full speed now). Finally we found a small restaurant near the beach. The beer is very cold and the sea food is good, but we all feel dozy after the food and even in the breezy patio the wind only blows hot air.

Back on the road, more jokes. We make a road stop when I REALLY need to go and there is no bathroom around. A small mountain of dirt serves as curtain. I come out to the road to hear a school bus full of kids whistling and hollering. Darn! :(

We continue our trip, retrace our steps, make more jokes. It gets
dark and the road suddenly reminds us of the "Whacky Race" cartoons, only that there are too many Dastardly Dastards on the road. Weirdly enough, we are all happy when we arrive in Santo Domingo.

We decide that we will do this again. Bunch of whackos!


PS: check this thread by Marilyn. http://dr1.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=17417
I got to see this with my own eyes and I have a few ideas on things that might be of help to them but I want to keep it off the board. Email me if you want to hear more.
 
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Art Covey

New member
Jan 2, 2002
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Thanks for the reminder of a GREAT trip

Did a similar trip in March of 2000 from Pueto Plata to Barahonna, a great drive with lots to see. The DR has many fantastic (non tourist) places to visit. Can't wait to explore more.
Art
 

Hillbilly

Moderator
Jan 1, 2002
18,939
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So that's why you were not at home!

Absolutely fabulous tour....thanks for the tales of the trip...

HB
 

KenoshaChris

New member
Jan 4, 2002
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Can I go too?

Thats the way to see the country. But that was no goat in Azua. That was my old girlfriend!
 

satine

New member
May 19, 2002
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Reading about your trip, makes my all inclusive --one stop resort look pretty lame in comparison, but it sure was fun.

Do you recommend your kind of trip for a group of 4 women. I mean is it safe etc. It sounds like you were a group of guys traveling.
 

Pib

Goddess
Jan 1, 2002
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[B]satine[/B] said:
It sounds like you were a group of guys traveling.
Excuse me! You see the word in little letters beneath Pib? It says Goddess. I am a girl.

But, ok, I forgive you :) We were a group of girls and boys. I don't see why 4 women can't make it. Provided at least one speaks a little spanish. I am sure it will be fun.
 

satine

New member
May 19, 2002
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To Pib:

Oops, Sorry, I did not notice goddess. My apologies. Anyways your trip sounded very interesting and exciting.
 

stevey

New member
May 25, 2002
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how far

how long of a trip was it from sto domingo to barahona and bahia de las aguilas?if ive been to bayahibe and boca chica, is it worth the trip?
 

Marilyn

New member
May 7, 2002
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Pib, now you're speaking my language!!!

Hey Pib,

I finally got to see this post and I really enjoyed it, my grandmother was from the town where you stayed (Casa Bonita in Bahoruco Beach) and I visit constantly because even though I have no family there anymore, I know almost everyone there. My grandmother's house is still there (see it at the Media Gallery) and I'm planning to fix it up for short stays. I've been all over the country but I love the Southwest for it's beautiful views and rugged coastline, please next time invite me along, or better yet, let's plan the next trip as I mentioned on my other thread, which you previously quoted.

Did you get to visit the Cuevas? I'm sure if you stopped where the road becomes a 1500 ft suicide drop then you got there...

PS: I've experienced the cold water, it comes sprinkled with ice cubes...