Puerto Plata: a paradise in the Caribbean


    The birthplace of tourism in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Plata continues to take a heavy blow. Its spectacular, vast landscape connects the sea, mountains, lush valleys, rivers, and many beaches. Cocoa and coffee trees grow in the fertile soil, and underneath is the purest amber in the world.


    The astute explorer Christopher Columbus knew there was much to discover on this North Atlantic coast – eventually finding gold deposits – when he saw it from his ship in 1492. He was attracted to the sight of clouds twinkling over Mount Isabel de Torres and illuminating Puerto Plata’s vast blue coastline, called the area the «Silver Harbor» and settled in La Isabela with the mixed community of Tainos – the area’s original inhabitants – and the Spaniards built the first church and its first home in the Americas. You can follow the Columbus Trail and explore these archaeological ruins that are now part of the national park.


    Puerto Plata’s natural riches continue to amaze those who gaze upon La Novia del Atlántico or, as the locals call it, the Darling of the Atlantic. The aerial view from the cable car – the only one in the Caribbean, taking passengers up Mount Isabel de Torres and its lush botanical gardens – reveals part of the Atlantic coast with over 100 kilometers of beaches surrounding many coastal villages, inland farming communities full of rivers and waterfalls and hotels of all sizes to suit all tastes. Moreover, Puerto Plata is home to colonial remains, including the largest collection of surviving 19th-century Victorian-style houses in the Caribbean, the oldest amber fossils in the world exhibited at the Amber Museum, and one of the first colonial-period fortresses in the Fortaleza San Felipe region dated back to for 1577.

    East and west along the Puerto Plata coast, constant trade winds, river systems, the vast Cordillera Septentrional Mountain range and the Atlantic Ocean create a world of outdoor adventure, including beach towns renowned for their water sports. Less than half an hour from the city of Sosúa, it was first settled by Jewish immigrants who fled Nazi Germany, boasting beautiful beaches where ex-pats and locals coexist and rich underwater sites. Nearby Cabarete is an internationally renowned windsurfing, surfing and kiteboarding center and a favorite cosmopolitan hideout for snowbirds. Playa Dorada is for those looking to relax in style on the golden stretches, with seaside attractions close to the city, from canyoning at the 27 Charcos of Damajagua waterfalls to snorkeling at the Cayo Arena and relaxing at the Ocean World Marina.


    Nature aside, Puerto Plata’s multitude of bustling villages translates into many cultural experiences. It’s a place where you can wander the family’s cocoa or coffee plantations, learn to play and dance the merengue from a family of musicians, or immerse yourself in the Dominican pelota at the Bartolo Colón stadium and museum. A vast culinary experience awaits you along the way, from roadside snacks to beachfront seafood and gourmet international restaurants.


    The main entry points to Puerto Plata are Gregorio Luperón International Airport (POP), located 15 minutes from the city center and Playa Dorada or Costa Dorada hotels, and the Amber Cove Cruise Center in Maimón.


    If you are looking forward to visiting this magnificent place in the Dominican Republic, book your charter flight with ReefJet that will surely take you to your destination the easiest and most comfortable way!