THE INCREDIBLE TOURIST ATTRACTION OF CIBAO
Along with the well-known and recognized fertility and productivity of the region, the Cibao has an exceptional tourist offer, which combines its wonderful beaches with great attractions of adventure, nature and cities, turning the northern zone into a very important area of the Dominican Republic, in this matter. Its natural riches, together with the traditional simplicity and friendliness of its people, make it almost obligatory, not one, but continuous visits to the northern region of the country.
A first aspect to highlight is the preservation of tourist environments to achieve the sustainable exploitation of resources, both from the coastline and from the mountains, rivers and valleys. It is also important to point out that each of the fourteen (14) provinces of Cibao, with its very particular characteristics, represents an attraction, which is why it deserves to be visited. Below we expose the most important tourist attractions in the region, both beach and adventure, nature and cities:
Regarding coastal tourism in the northern region, which extends from the province of Monte Cristi to Samaná, offers a wide variety of beaches, with hotel rooms and other facilities (such as the Puerto de Puerto Plata International Airport) for the enjoyment of its local and foreign visitors.
Starting in the northwest zone, that is, in Mount Cristi, podemos encontrar atractivos turísticos dentro de la ciudad, como lo es su famoso Reloj, construido en Francia en 1895 y la Parroquia San Fernando, con su diseño arquitectónico del siglo XIX. Ambas edificaciones se encuentran bastante cerca. También podemos encontrar el Parque Nacional El Morro, que se eleva hasta 242 metros sobre el nivel del mar, siendo llamativa su forma de camello. A su lado aparece la playa El Morro, con su arena de color marrón. Esta ciudad cuenta con otras playas y atractivos turísticos de interés.
Then we come to Puerto Plata, que es el destino turístico más importante de la costa norte, ya que recibe a cientos de miles de turistas nacionales e internacionales cada año, en grandes hoteles y aparta-hoteles. Junto a sus famosas playas, esta ciudad tiene varios atractivos, tales como el antiguo poblado de La Isabela (primer asentamiento de la colonización), la Fortaleza de San Felipe, el Museo del Ámbar y el Parque Nacional Isabel de Torres, el Teleférico, entre otros.
The main beach destinations in Puerto Plata (with more than 100 kilometers of beaches) are in Sosúa, Cabarete, Playa Dorada and Luperón. The beaches Maimón, Dorada, Cofresí, Punta Russia, Sosúa, Costámbar and others stand out.
Going to the province Maria Trinidad Sánchez (Nagua), You can find beautiful beaches in the coastal cities of Río San Juan and Cabrera, standing out Caletón, Playa Grande, Los Cocos El Diamante and Azul, among others. The Malecón in the city of Nagua is also a great show.
We conclude the beach destinations of Cibao with the city of Samana, at the extreme northeast of the Dominican Republic, which competes with Puerto Plata, as the most important tourist destination in the region. Samaná has one of the most complete tourist offers, not only in Cibao and the rest of the Dominican Republic, but in the entire Caribbean region.
At the beginning, the city of Samaná itself has great attractions, such as its picturesque houses of different very bright colors in the Plaza Pueblo Príncipe and the famous bridges. In addition, the visit to the Humpback Whale Sanctuary in the Bay and the Banco de la Plata between the months of December and March, when more than 1,500 whales arrive to breed.
The beautiful beaches and their large, medium and small hotel complexes in the same city of Samaná, Sánchez, Las Terrenas, El Limón, Las Galeras and other areas are not far behind, to find the beaches Rincón, Bonita, Cayo Levantado, Frontón, Portillo, Madama, Cosón and other beautiful beach destinations.
ADVENTURE AND NATURE ATTRACTIONS
The northern region represents a paradise for ecological tourism, since we can find national parks, waterfalls, rivers for adventure activities, desert areas, humid forests and all kinds of landscape to the delight of Dominican tourists and those from abroad, seeking always the least possible impact on the environment.
The community of Jarabacoa (Municipality of the province of La Vega) is the most important destination in terms of adventure and nature attractions, combining high mountains with appropriate rivers and waterfalls, which are ideal for mountaineering, horseback riding, mountain biking, canyoning, rafting , paragliding and other types of activities
To facilitate the stay of tourists in Jarabacoa, different hotels operate with all the comforts, reservation facilities and attractive prices. Also, there are a large number of rental villas, with gardens and terraces that have exceptional views of nature, with options of all the comforts or residences that work with natural materials, to preserve the environment.
Another very important tourist attraction in the Cibao area is the climb to Pico Duarte or the different levels of height that each visitor can reach from its more than 3,000 meters above sea level, since it is very attractive for those who prefer activities. hiking and seeing spectacular natural environments. This is the highest elevation in the entire Caribbean region. The Pico Duarte is located in the middle of the Central Mountain Range and you can start to climb from Constanza (another important mountainous municipality of La Vega), to reach the top after four (4) days, approximately.
Pico Duarte is located within the José Armando Bermúdez and José del Carmen Ramírez national parks, between which many important rivers of the Dominican Republic are born.
In these mountainous parks you will find different types of flora that are unique, as well as many species of birds. To carry out these hiking trails, tourists can hire official guides and also obtain all the tools that are necessary for the excursion. Through the realization of this type of adventure and nature tourism, a greater knowledge of natural resources is sought and at the same time, create a greater awareness of environmental protection.
In the northeast area of Cibao, between the cities of San Francisco de Macorís and Tenares, you can find The Cacao Trail, which is an excursion at Hacienda La Esmeralda, to learn about all the stages of the transformation process of a cocoa pod until the preparation and tasting of the chocolate.
This experience is provided by the Rizek family, which are the main exporters of the highest quality Dominican cocoa. In this farm on the Cacao Trail you can see and participate in the sowing of cacao, harvesting and separating the pods and obtaining the cacao beans, to then see the fermentation and drying, before turning into chocolate. Visitors to the Cacao Trail fully enjoy this ecological excursion.
It is very important to note that the National Park Los Haitises, belonging to the province of Samaná, is one of the main ecological attractions of the country, since it is a humid forest that contains hills, valleys and waterfalls, along with a large number of caves.
The landscape offered by this destination is not found anywhere else in the world, where the sea water has various shades, where a lush jungle appears and where we enter a system of caves with paintings of the indigenous people. In Los Haitises there are more than 100 varieties of birds, including some in danger of extinction. There are also turtles, dolphins, reptiles and bats. For the knowledge and benefit of tourists, excursions can be made to different areas of this exceptional nature tourist destination.
TOURIST ATTRACTIONS OF CITIES
As we have mentioned above, each city of the Cibao can be considered a tourist destination due to the particular characteristics of each one. On this occasion, we expose outstanding aspects of two (2) provinces of the region, which are Santiago de los Caballeros y Dajabón (zona fronteriza).
In recent years, the city of Santiago de los Caballeros has become a tourist destination (without having beaches or natural adventures) through what is called the Historical Cultural Route of the Heart City, since the city has a great cultural infrastructure that includes museums, gastronomy, cultural centers and events, old and historical buildings, architecture, monuments (among them that of the Heroes of the Restoration, which identifies the city), crafts, parks, traditions, murals and other attractions.
This successful project of the Tourism Development Strategy has been conceived and developed by the authorities of the central government, the local mayor's office and businessmen who have made up the Cluster Santiago Destino Turístico. Through the City Tours Santiago program, tourists have different routes, according to their preferences.
It is also necessary to note that the city of Santiago de los Caballeros has become in recent years an important health tourist destination, receiving frequent visits, not only from patients and relatives from other cities in Ciba, but also from other cities in the rest of the country, including Santo Domingo (the capital) and from abroad. Different private medical centers show great advances in the management of different health conditions, through highly trained medical personnel and state-of-the-art equipment. An example of the development achieved by health tourism in this city is the high investment of resources in the construction of a new professional tower and hotel being carried out by the Santiago Metropolitan Hospital (HOMS) to accommodate Dominican and international patients and companions.
Finally, we highlight the entrepreneurial work of men and women in the province of Dajabón, which through local organizations have developed the project The Honey Route, with the support of government agencies and international agencies. Through beekeeping production they attract tourists based on the sustainable use of ecosystems in five (5) apiaries, where they can find out the Pollen, Propolis, Royal Jelly, Wax and Honey produced by bees. This activity to attract tourists is also very important for these entrepreneurs, since they are also suppliers of honey to several supermarket chains and sell it to different people and commercial establishments in the Dajabón area.
In summary, we must say that the Cibao region not only offers the largest agricultural and livestock production in the Dominican Republic, but also offers the greatest variety of tourist attractions of beaches, adventure, nature, theme parks and cities, along with the kindness of Los Cibaeños, to visit frequently, throughout the year.