Monday, June 29, 2009

Dominican Republic Trip

Joy and I had the opportunity to visit my brother Regan in the Dominican Republic. He first went down there four years ago, but things had not worked out for us to visit until now. We arrived on Saturday, June 13, after a good flight with only one lay-over. Regan met us at the airport and took us to where he lives in Jarabacoa.
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It rained pretty hard after we arrived. Here is a picture of Regan's place from the side street.

Sunday, after church and lunch, the three of us, along with Leah and her son, took a walk to the Baiguate falls. I enjoyed the trail through the canyon as much as anything. Here is a tree covered in epiphytes out over the river.

The Baiguate Falls. The water was still raging from the recent rains, so we had to be cautious while playing in the water.

The canyon walls on the trail back from the falls.

Monday afternoon, the three of us took a walk in the country to the top of one of the hills overlooking town. The hills and woods were beautiful, and it was nice to enjoy the peace and look for wildlife.

Another view on the trail up to the radio tower.

Lizards were very common. Regan said that he doesn't notice them anymore, but I enjoyed watching them. There seemed to be a variety.

Tuesday, we took motorcycles up to the Upper Jimenoa waterfalls. The Jimenoa river is one of the main rivers, along with the Yaque del Norte, in Jarabacoa. It is a fairly short, but steep walk down to the waterfall from the road. It was one of my favorite places. After swimming, Regan and I climbed around on the boulders.

Wednesday, we headed up the valley towards the tallest (10,164') mountain, Pico Duarte. I would love to hike this mountain sometime. We walked only a couple miles up the trail.

Regan swimming in the headwaters of the Yaque. It was threatening to storm, so we headed back down the trail.

The trail was pretty muddy, much to Joy's chagrin. Luckily, there was a nice place to clean off our feet.

Thursday, after much hassle with our car rental, we made it to the capital city of Santo Domingo. After some obligatory stops at the Columbus related historical sites, we decided to try and find a place Regan had heard about called Tres Ojos. Roads in Santo Domingo are not as simple as the street map makes them out to be, but we found the little park in the center of town. The park was centered around a cave system that had three large sinkhole openings. It was very pretty to see the cave and jungle together.

The largest opening to the cave system.

After a long day of driving, we made it to Bayahibe, a resort town on the southeast coast. This is the view of the bay near our hotel.

There were curious lizards in the area that had a bright orange tail that they wiggled like worms.

We took a catamaran to a island off the southeastern tip of the DR called Saona. The island was a national park and had very nice beaches with great swimming and snorkling. Regan and I found many cool fish, including a stone fish.

Joy on the beach.

Saturday, when we got back from the beach, Regan took us to a great restaurant on the mountains overlooking Jarabacoa. Good food, plus we got to watch the sunset over the mountains.

We took a walk on Sunday from the Confluence along the Yaque del Norte. This orchid was growing epiphytically everywhere along the trail.

1 comment:

Kelly said...

"There were curious lizards in the area that had a bright orange tail that they wiggled like worms."
-This lizard seems to fit the description of a female red-sided curlytail lizard (Leiocephalus schreibersii), which is native to DR.