From Santo Domingo To Samana
From the Santo Domingo Airport to Samana takes just under 2 1/2 hours. The drive is worthwhile. As you head north you will pass through the Dominican country side where you will see rice farms and various other agricultural products. As you turn to the east the rice fields transform into coconut trees. When you see these coconut trees it means you have made it to the small village of Sanchez and once you among the coconut trees you are nearing your destination.
History of Samana
Samana, full name – Santo Barbara de Samana – is a small town located on the northeastern coast of the Dominican Republic. This quant town of Samana sits on the Samana Bay where you can walk along the malecon (seaside) and discover the town’s restaurants, bars, shops, and small markets.
The town of Samana dates to 1493 when Christopher Columbus made a quick stop on his first voyage to the New World. It was later left alone for many years. In 1756 the Spanish claimed Samana until 1796 when it passed into French hands in the peace treaty of Basel. In 1807, with the assistance of the British Navy, Samana changed hands one more time – this time back to the Spanish. This small skirmish also represented the end of the French occupation of any part of what is now the Dominican Republic.
Fast forward to modern times with the assistance of the new road carved through the mountains which allowed this once difficult and time-consuming location to start converting into a top tier destination for travelers. With its magnificent white sand beaches, the Bay of Samana, and the warm waters of the Atlantic, it didn’t take long for the world to learn of the beauty that is tucked away here on the Samana Peninsula.
Where to Stay in Samana
Samana has a mix of several all-inclusive resorts, boutique hotels and bed & breakfast style rentals. Many have fantastic views of the Samana Bay as many of the properties are located on the rolling hills of Samana.
Reasons To Visit Samana
The Samana peninsula without a doubt is one of the best places in the Caribbean for a true escape. When you come to Samana you come for the simple beauty this destination represents.
Things To Do And See
Samana has all the experiences a traveler is looking for. Pristine and natural looking terrain, rolling hills, coconut trees, bays, islands and natural parks make the Samana Peninsula one of the top destinations on the island.
Playa (beach) Cayaco is the public beach and is just a few minutes’ walk from the town center. For a more serene experience you can explore one of the beaches just outside of the downtown – Playa Las Garitas, Playa Anadel, Playa Liberato, or on the northern side of Samana – Playa El Valle, and the world famous Playa Rincon.
You can take a boat cruise around the Samana bay out to the island of Cayo Levantado to spend the day on an island of white sand beaches and deep blue water, or arrive by boat to several of the most popular beaches in and around Samana.
Board a boat on the Samana Bay and head to the National Park – not a bad way to arrive. A park filled with mangroves, limestone caves, animals, birds, islets and an undulating topography – this is the best way to see and enjoy the nature and wildlife on the remote north-eastern coast of the Dominican Republic.
If you are lucky enough to visit Samana from December to March you can see one of the largest Humpback whale migrations in the world. The Samana Bay will be full of Humpback whales giving birth, preparing their calves for the journey north, or just playing and breaching in the water. This is a true awe-inspiring event of nature to witness.
This locally famous bridge in the downtown of Samana was built to allow pedestrians access to a large casino complex at the other end. However, the casino failed as did the restaurant. Now this is the bridge to nowhere where on any given day you can see locals and tourist alike enjoying the views and the breeze from the park benches located at the end of the bridge. It is a great walk in the morning or as the sun sets.
Malecon means the street or walkway along the water. In Samana what you want to see and do is located either on the malecon or within a few minutes of the malecon. From the malecon you have: breathtaking views of the bay, places to enjoy a nice lunch or dinner, or places where you can sit back and relax with your favorite rum drink in hand. There are also shops and other tourist attractions along the malecon.
Take a day trip to the island in the middle of the Samana Bay where you will breathe in the stunning beauty of the blue-ish green waters, white sand, sun and the breezes of the Caribbean.
Restaurants and Bars
In the town of Samana you will find several restaurants either right on the malecon (seaside) or a couple of streets back. In the center of the town there is a plaza where there are several restaurants that open for lunch and/or dinner and overlook the Samana Bay. Think pop-up restaurants for these. They have a small, fixed building (the kitchen) and then they have chairs and tables that they set up on the plaza overlooking the bay. With so many restaurant options on the beaches, above the Atlantic Ocean on cliffs, in town, off the beaten path, etc., Samana has many dining options for those with the explores’ passion. Here are just a few.
Transportation From Santo Domingo To Samana
If you need transportation from Santo Domingo to Samana (from the city or airport), our English-speaking reservations department is standing by to assist you.