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Holiday Packages - Cruise ship excursions - Las Galeras - Samana Peninsula - Dominican Republic
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Las Galeras Tourist Information

We strongly recommend you arrive in Las Galeras before dark. Once you are off the main highway the roads quickly turn into dark and bumpy country lanes.

A view on Google Map will give you some idea just how undeveloped the area is.

Directions to Hacienda Hostel

There is one main crossroad in Las Galeras -just before you hit the beach.

Drive: To get to La Hacienda take a right at the crossroads. If you miss the turn and end up on the beach, turn around and take your first left.

Pass the entrance to the all inclusive resort (Grand Paradise) the pavement ends, favoring the left , continue along this dirt road until you reach a T junction. Turn right at this T junction towards the direction of Playa Madame - look for the big brown sign " Ruta Eco Turistica" and be prepared for a seriously steep hill. At the top of the hill keep on the "main" road , after a bumpy 600 meters you will see a big yellow house with a white roof on the right -

look for the logo on the gate:

Public Transport :You can take a motor concho from the crossroads for about 100 pesos (have the correct change). We recommend getting a concho if you have a backpack. Just ask for the "La Hacienda Hostel".

Walk: If you really want to walk, go to the main beach in Las Galeras and follow the beach right (as you face the ocean) towards and through the all inclusive resort. After the resort walk past a private house called Villa Catherine and continue on a dirt road walking away from the beach. You will come to a sign - follow the road to Playa Madame and walk up the very steep hill. It will be a hot 3 k walk carrying luggage. You have been warned!

If you have a problem call Karin at 1.829.9398285

Table of Contents

How to get to the Samana Peninsula Money Matters Communications
How to get to Las Galeras Health Concerns Services
Getting Around What to bring Shopping

 

How to get to the Samana Peninsula  

International Flights to the DR:

See Links below for some airlines that serve the DR out of Europe and North America. The closest airport is Samana (El Caty). Puerto Plata, Santiago, Santo Domingo and Punta Cana are also possible airports to arrive at.

Airport taxi fares are expensive in the DR but it is often the only practical way out of the airport.

To Las Galeras from any airport will cost between 70 to 350 US dollars, depending on how far away the airport is. From El Catey (Samana airport) a taxi to Las Galeras generally starts at US 70.

By Car

From Santo Domingo - The Carretera De Samana is a two lane highway starting at km 15 of the Autopista de Las Americas (not far from the Las Americas airport). This highway is east of Santo Domingo and west of Boca Chica. It takes 2.5 hrs to Samana. If you have to overnight but don't want to go into Santo Domingo, than staying in Boca Chica is an option.  

From Puerto Plata – Follow the coastal highway (Route 5) all the way to Samana. At Nagua ensure you stick to Route 5 and do not start heading for Santo Domingo! About 4 hours.

From Santiago – The recommended route is to head south on Route 1 for La Vega. South of La Vega head for San Francisco de Macoris than take Route 132 heading to Nagua. From Nagua take Route 5 for Sanchez and Samana. About 4 hours.

Punta Cana – driving a car from Punta Cana (5 hour drive) it is best to head towards Santo Domingo and take the Autopista de Las Americas highway. About 6 hours.

By Public Transportation

Check with www.LonelyPlanet.com or www.DR1.com for current bus information, things change quickly in the DR.

From Sosua/Puerto Plata – stand in front of the police station in Sosua at 6 am and get the public bus to Samana. About 350 pesos, subject to change. You can do this trip with gua gua (around 4 changes), a bit more expensive and less convenient but possible.

From Santo Domingo and Santiago– check with Caribe Tours (809 538 2229) or on their website for the schedule to Samana. From Santiago you can also try Linea Santiaguera.

Arriving by plane at Las Americas Airport in Santo Domingo it is not necessary to go into the city to catch the Caribe Tour bus. There is a Caribe Tour bus stop at the beginning of the new highway to Samana which is between Las Americans Airport and Santo Domingo, parada "Las Americas". You can get a taxi from the airport to the bus stop without going into the city. (about USD 30 from the airport to the bus stop.) Check the "Caribe Tours" Bus website for bus times to Samana.

There is also a bus direct to Las Galeras from a separate bus stop (near Caribe Tour bus stop). It is best to tell your taxi driver you want to go to Las Galeras by bus. It is a good possibility he will stop to enquire when the next direct bus to Las Galeras leaves. It you don't need to stop in Samana town, this is a good option to take and it will be a bit cheaper.

From Punta Cana – take a series of gua guas from the airport or Bavaro to Sabana de la Mar in order to get the passenger boat across Samana Bay to Samana town. (About 5 hours from the airport to Sabana.) The last ferry from Sabana to Samana is at 5 pm and the last gua gua from Samana to Las Galeras is around sun down.

If you are relying on public transportation you should plan to arrive in Las Galeras before dark.

Internal Flights to the Samana Peninsula

Check current information at www. DR1.com or call Aerodomca.

 

How to get to Las Galeras Getting Around

Las Galeras is on the eastern edge of the Samana Peninsula. Follow the road from Samana town until you hit the beach….you have reached the end of the road.

The closest airport to fly into is the Samana (also called El Catey) Airport. There are no hotels or services near this airport and it is about an hour drive to Samana town.

Arriving at this airport you will have to take a taxi or rent a car. During day time you can take a bus...walk outside the airport (1 km) till to the main road. (Advised only for the hardy traveler with light luggage).

From the Malecon in Samana town you can get a gua gua (local public transportation that looks like a mini bus that has fallen off a cliff) for about 3 US dollars (100 peso - have the correct change). The gua gua stops at sunset.

You can also get a private taxi from Samana town, and the cost will depend on your negotiation skills, but about 1500 pesos would not be unreasonable - and expect up to 3000 pesos at night.


Rental Vehicles – it is possible to rent a vehicle in the DR, a jeep or four wheel drive is advised for the Samana Peninsula if you intend to explore the area fully. It is possible to rent a vehicle for a few days in Las Galeras. Driving in the DR can be a bit of a challenge and it is best not to be on the roads after dark.

Buses - Caribe Tours is the national bus line and has a fairly good service from Santo Domingo to Samana. Dress warm as they blast the air con.

Gua Gua – privately owned mini vans that go from town to town throughout the DR. Generally very crowded and inexpensive. A common way to get from Samana to Las Galeras

Motorconcho – motorcycle taxi. A common way to get around Las Galeras if you do not feel like walking.

Private Taxi – You can arrange a private taxi from any of the major entry points. ( Santo Domingo, Santiago, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Samana Airport (El Catey)) It will cost you in the region of 70 – 350 US dollars depending on the distance from the airport to Las Galeras.

Note: if you are coming from Punta Cana by taxi you will be dropped at the wharf in Sabana del la Mar where you will get a boat to Samana town.


Money Matters Health Concerns

La Hacienda Hostel accepts euro, US dollars, and pesos. Like most places in Las Galeras, we do not accept credit cards.

There is a bank in Las Galeras with an ATM. The daily withdrawal limit is 2000 pesos for the ATM. With your passport and credit card you can go into the bank and withdraw what you like.

It is possible to exchange money in Las Galeras.

It is best not to rely totally on ATM withdrawals while in the DR and especially in Las Galeras (The ATM's are often out of money or not working in Las Galeras.)

 


In general, if you take the normal, common sense precautions you should be fine in Las Galeras. Be careful what you eat, drink plenty of water, and avoid sunstroke.

It is wise to cover exposed areas and wear mosquito repellent. If you are sensitive to mosquitoes, for your own piece of mind bring a portable mosquito net with you - they are very reasonably priced.

Cuts and scrapes may happen in the normal course of events, especially if you are traveling with children. It is advisable to carry a small first aid kit. (salt pills, disinfectant, band aids, anti itch cream and so on)

There are no dangerous land animals (insects, spiders, snakes) in Las Galeras - despite what you may think about the size and variety of insects and spiders you may encounter. The red centipede can give a nasty bite so don't be tempted to handle it.

Communications Services

It is possible to use your cell phone in Las Galeras, coverage can be patchy.

International rates can be high so an option is to buy a local cellphone (for as low as 700 pesos). You will find this handy as most places don't have land lines.

WIFI is becoming common in Las Galeras and La Hacienda has WIFI. Please ensure you know how your smart phone or tablet works to connect to WIFI.

Laundry -There was no official place to do laundry in Las Galeras.

Petrol Station – You are advised to fill your tank in Samana as there is no gas station (as you know it) in Las Galeras.

 

Electricity– Las Galeras is one of the few places in the DR with a reliable electrical supply. The standard is 110 voltage.

What to bring Shopping

We suggest the following;

Reading material, reef shoes and snorkel gear, batteries needed other than AAA and AA, any gear needed for digital cameras, an alarm clock, flashlight (because it can get as dark as the inside of a cow) , binoculars, small package of hand wipes, sun protection, small first aid kit, comfortable walking shoes, light weight long pants and long sleeved shirt, travelers net if you are sensitive to mosquitoes, and light rain gear.


There are about four shops in Las Galeras selling a variety of items that normally appeal to visitors, including places to purchase the typical Dominican paintings.

There are three shops where basic food and supplies can be purchased. The french bakery produces fresh bread.

Las Galeras has a pharmacy.


Links
www.dr1.com Perhaps the best site for local information on the DR, largely provided by people who live in the DR.
www.lonelyplanet.com The Thorn Tree on Lonely Planet can be a useful source of information and their DR guide book is good.
www.samana.org.do Center for Conservation
and Eco-Development
www.wikiloc.com/trails/hiking/dominican-republic/samana/las-galeras Best hiking, biking and offroading trails in Las Galeras
www.whalesamana.com Whale watching with Kim
www.islandlifebackpackershostel.com Hostel in the centre of Santo Domingo (gets good reviews from La Hacienda guests)
www.aircanada.com/en/home.html Direct flights to Samana from major cities
www.airtransat.com Charter flights from Canada
www.westjet.com Direct flights from Canada to Samana
www.jetblue.com Flights from east coast of USA
www.jetairfly.com Flights from Belgium
www.charterflights.co.uk Charter flights from the UK

 

Phone 1.829.9398285 , Email: info@lahaciendahostel.com

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