The second port on our cruise to South Caribbean Islands, was La Romana – the seventh largest city in Dominican Republic! La Romana is known for its sugarcanes,internationally renowned golf courses and Altos de Chavón, a beautiful replica of a 16th-century artisan village!
We reached La Romana at 7am in the morning and were scheduled to depart the port at 2pm. Instead of planning our itinerary for this island on our own, we decided to try out the shore excursions offered by Carnival – since they covered the two things that we wanted to do here. So once we disembarked from the cruise, we headed to our meeting point, where an air conditioned motor coach awaited us – along with a super friendly guide! Once everyone was on board, we started our tour.
The first stop was Altos de Chavón, a unique village where artists live, work, and play. On our way, we passed by the famous Casa de Campo resorts – known as the favorite hangout place on the island for a lot of celebrities! The guide informed us that the Clinton’s will be spending their New Year’s at this resort – sigh! we missed them by just a few days 😉
Altos de Chavón, is a replica of a 17th century Mediterranean village. We did a walking tour of this slower-moving era and it was so much fun! We spent a couple of hours strolling through the cobblestone streets lined with lanterns, wrought-iron balconies, a few quaint shops and a panoramic view of the river. One of the highlights of our walking tour was the open -air amphitheatre! It’s really huge and well maintained – it was being prepped for the Enrique Iglesias show on 31st of December, 2016! Another opportunity- missed 😛
We also visited the Design school, the art gallery and the St. Stanislaus Church at the village. The tour ended with some magnet shopping and ice-creams to beat the heat!
Next stop, was the Riverboat cruise on the Chavón River! The boat was the Mississippi-style riverboat cruise with fantastic scenery to the sound of merengue music, open bar and incredible bird watching and scenic photo opportunities of a place left standing still in time! We immersed ourselves in some lovely views along the Chavón River, where the movie Apocalypse Now was filmed, while enjoying a complimentary drink (rum + coke) and listening to Dominican music! I even danced to the tunes of some Dominican music – check out the video here!
After the cruise, it was time to head back to the cruise with great memories of the two unique experiences!