The Dominican Republic, where beyond the sun-soaked beaches, lies a countryside that is nothing short of enchanting. Here, visitors are greeted with a captivating tapestry of landscapes, adorned with picturesque rivers, lush forests, and flourishing farms. This is el campo, the countryside locals love since the time of the Dominican Taino, the first inhabitants of the island.

The Fishermen Village, Sosua

The river in Sosua
Fishermen village in Sosua, Puerto Plata.
Sosua fisherman
A fisherman with his fishing gear.
fresh catch
Fresh catch of the day, Sosua.

Captivating Casitas:

As one embarks on a journey through the Dominican countryside, it is impossible to overlook the traditional casitas that dot the landscape. These delightful dwellings feature vibrant facades painted in a kaleidoscope of colors, instantly evoking a sense of joy and warmth. Constructed with local materials, including cane, wood, and palm fronds, their thatch roofs provide respite from the tropical sun and offer a rustic, yet cozy, ambiance.

a donkey in a Dominican campo
A burro, the term used locally for Donkey.
River in DR
A day at the river in Cabarete, Puerto Plata.
campo man in DR
A man in a horse at El Choco, Cabarete.

The casitas serve as a visual representation of Dominican culture and history. Each color carries symbolic meaning, with bright blues signifying peace and tranquility, yellows representing the warmth of the people, and greens reflecting the lush natural surroundings. Most casitas have a farming garden locally known as a Conuco, where they grow organic crops for consumption or commercialization.

Riverside Retreats:

The Dominican countryside is blessed with an abundance of breathtaking rivers that meander through the landscape, offering a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life. These crystal-clear waterways, flanked by verdant banks, create an oasis of calm and provide the perfect backdrop for the charming casitas.

Sonador sign
Rio Sonador, Puerto Plata.
River day at Sonador
Dominicans enjoying a day at the River.

Immerse yourself in the true Dominican Republic culture by visiting a local river such as Sonador in Puerto Plata, which has several sections within various private properties that sell access tickets for as low as $2 dollars per person. Other similar tours can be taken to La Rejoya, Damajagua 27 falls and Charco de los Militares waterfalls.

La rejoya
The waterfall at La Rejoya

Nature’s Bounty:

The Dominican countryside is a haven for nature enthusiasts, boasting diverse ecosystems that encompass dense forests, lush valleys, and fertile farmlands. Explore the enchanting trails that wind through these natural wonders and discover a world teeming with flora and fauna. You can walk in el campo and find fresh fruit such as mangoes along the road, free for the taking.

 dominican fogon
A fogon, one of the oldest cooking artifacts still in use today.
Platano, a staple of local cuisine.

Take a stroll through the forested areas, where vibrant tropical flowers bloom in a riot of colors and exotic bird species flit among the treetops. The air is filled with the sweet scent of fruit-bearing trees, and the sound of chirping birds provides a melodious soundtrack to your adventure.

La Turistica Highway

As you delve deeper into the countryside, you’ll encounter sprawling farms, where farmers cultivate a variety of crops, including coffee, cacao, and bananas. These agricultural landscapes offer a glimpse into the traditional farming practices that have sustained generations of Dominican families.

River pond
El Charco de los Militares river.

La Turistica highway connects Puerto Plata and Santiago through a winding scenic road cut around the mountain range between Juan de Nina, Tubagua, La Cumbre, Gurabo and other countryside locations that make up a very interesting road trip into place such as Sonador River, the Amber mines, waterfalls and the best of the DR countryside experience.

campo dominicans
A cat by a fruit stand in La Cumbre, Puerto Plata.
Friendly Donkeys at Taino Valley.
Goats and farm animals at Taino Valley.

Cultural Immersion:

Beyond the natural splendor, the Dominican countryside is a gateway to authentic cultural experiences. Engage with friendly locals who are eager to share their stories and traditions. Join a lively merengue dance session, indulge in traditional Dominican cuisine, or witness the craftsmanship of local artisans as they create intricate handmade crafts. 

Several excursions include routes to the best of the DR’s countryside, including Tubagua, El Cupey, El Gallo, Yasica, and other locations in the North Coast region where ATV tours and horseback riding excursions take visitors through local villages and rivers. Contact the Puerto Plata Concierge page for more information.

puerto plata catamaran

Campo tour
Coffee tasting at Taino Valley.
Baseball practice
Baseball sunday at Bella Vista, Sosua.