Enrol for Pathfinders 2019 before December 21, 2018 and get $100 off with the code EarlyBird2019!

Dominican Republic

Welcome to Rustic Pathways in Dominican Republic!

Rustic Pathways has been running programs in Latin America since 2003. In 2011, we began programs in the beautiful country of the Dominican Republic. With strong focuses on environmental, social and infrastructural service in this island paradise, Rustic Pathways is very pleased to share this slice of paradise, through our eyes, with its students.

Group Travel in Dominican Republic!

We custom design our Journeys to meet your school’s requirements, so please contact us to discuss the type of experience you are looking for. As a general guide, here are some of the potential elements of your Journey through Dominican Republic:

  • One of the best experiences of my life. I highly rate it and the rustic staff were awesome
    Student in school group who travelled to Kununurra in 2017

Service Projects

Rustic Pathways has developed various partnerships with communities, villages and local organisations in Dominican Republic. While both rich in wildlife and culture this island country still has need of meaningful service work in a number of areas. Some of our service projects that you could support include:

Ecological Restoration Projects: Explore and get your hands dirty with mangroves, reef formations and marine wildlife at Los Haitises National Park on the Samana Peninsula.

English Tutoring: Learn about Dominican Republic culture and traditions as you run an English tutoring program for children at a school.

Village infrastructure: Participate in small-scale construction work and improving local infrastructure such as building an aqueduct or repairing a village house.

Jarabacoa: The rural Dominican Republic is home to some of the lowest standards of living in the country. Houses often lack running water or electricity, and sewage systems are absent in many places. You will work alongside locals to help raise the living standards doing one of many projects initiated by the community, based on the needs at the time.

Kids Camp: Your trip leaders will give you guidance and time throughout the program to plan activities for a full day of camp for local children from the community. You and your team will manage camp stations including sports, games, arts & crafts, and education workshops.

Batey Community: Service initiatives vary based on local needs, so you may help with construction or agricultural projects, English lessons, educational workshops, or designing activities for local children.

Medical Service: Work alongside health care professionals on high-impact public health projects across the Dominican Republic. Identify health needs of rural, urban, wealthy, and impoverished communities and help develop meaningful public service initiatives.

Education and Cultural Exploration

With a rich history and blend of many cultures, this tropical paradise has many facets to its social and cultural sides. We have been developing relationship with partner organisations that give you the opportunity to see first-hand the lifestyle and culture of the Dominican Republic. You may like to incorporate some of the following experiences into your Journey:

Colonial Zone: This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to the first university, cathedral and hospital in the Americas. Take a tour of the walled city and learn about the deep history of the first European settlement in the Americas

The Bateyes: Learn about the issues facing the Batayes, marginalised Haitian-Dominican communities, on this service and cultural expedition. Get to know the locals through service work as you live amongst them and learn about their life stories.

Jarabacoa Province: Take a tour of a local ranch and sustainable farm near the Rustic Pathways base. Enjoy a home-cooked traditional Dominican meal made with vegetables from the ranch’s organic gardens and learn about the organic farming and energy reclamation projects that the ranch is known for

Wilderness First Aid: Earn your Wilderness First Aid certification and apply your new skills to helping communities in need.

Adventure and Challenge

Adventure and challenge is inherent to every Journey, however, if you are looking to physically challenge your students through a specific activity, you may opt to include:

Los Haitises: Take a boat through the canals of the Rio Caño Hondo to explore caves and beaches in the area.

Kayak, Sail, And Snorkel: Get out on the warm Dominican ocean to try your hand at any of these activities.

White-water rafting: Throw on a lifejacket and head down the white water rapids of the Rio Yaque del Norte, the longest river in the Caribbean.

Dominican Alps: Throw on a backpack and hike through the Dominican Alps, passing through some truly amazing landscapes and beautiful rainforest, this adventure can last 1 or more days.

PADI Open Water Certification: Dive in clear Caribbean water and swim around the tropical fish and coral reefs while you earn your PADI Open Water Certificate in sunny paradise.

Accommodations

There are various accommodation options that we can offer in Costa Rica; it depends on how “rustic” you would like your Journey to be.

Hotels: A variety of 3, 4 & 5 star hotels in cities and towns

Guesthouses: Primarily used while in smaller towns, this is a great combination of comfort and lifestyle in the Dominican.

The Base: Jarabacoa – Students can stay at an eco- lodge in dormitories or hotel-style rooms. Facility has swimming pool, common areas, and other recreational activities.

Sample Itinerary

Island Living and Eco-Service

Work to preserve the remarkable environment of this island paradise

Day 1

Fly in to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Your Rustic Pathways staff will greet you upon arrival and take you to the nearby hotel for the night to get some sleep before the real adventure begins.

Day 2

After a buffet breakfast, head to your new home of Juan Dolio, just a short drive away from Santo Domingo. Settle in at your new home and familiarize yourself with the history of baseball here in the Dominican Republic. Get to know your team before you dive into community service and lots of baseball games!

Days 3 – 5

Get ready to work hard these next two weeks as you contribute to sustainable service projects in the community. Throughout your time in the Dominican Republic you will help construct baseball fields for local youth, get your hands dirty with various infrastructure projects, and clean up the surrounding beaches to help protect the environment. After a hearty lunch, you grab your hats, bats and gloves for your first baseball practice here in the DR! Learn first hand about the passion that Dominican people bring to this sport.

Day 6

Take a short trip to the Cuevas de las Maravillas where you will find paintings and engravings by the Taínos, the indigenous people to the Dominican Republic. After three days of invigorating service and learning, look forward to enjoying unwinding with a well-deserved day of fun. Today, head out to Playa Bayahibe to spend the day swimming in the serene Caribbean waters and soaking in the sun on the beach.

Days 7 – 8

Continue your service work alongside community partners, working together to achieve your goal! Focus on your baseball game and get ready to cheer on your teammates and hit those home-runs!

Day 9

Today your group will visit the Baseball Museum in Santo Domingo. Learn about the rich history of baseball in the DR and some new fun facts about the sport. Enjoy a team lunch in the Colonial Zone, taking the sites of the old city. In the afternoon, you’ll wrap up the day with a mini baseball camp, working hard before enjoying a well deserved family-style dinner.

Days 10 – 11

For the next couple days you will put your baseball skills to the test in your final games against a local Dominican team! In the afternoons, finish up the final touches on your service project and say goodbye to all of the wonderful people you met in your community. In the evenings enjoy learning more about Dominican culture through history, dance, food and more!

Day 12

Explore the beauty of the Dominican Republic as you travel through lush tropical vegetation and incredible coastal views. Arrive in Los Patos for lunch stop, where you and your group will get to see where the river meets the ocean! After lunch, keep enjoying the nice ride to a hotel near the beach, where you’ll settle in and have a typical Dominican dinner.

Day 13

You earned it! This morning, take a breathtaking hike to Hoyo del Pelempito for gorgeous views overlooking the valley. Cool down in the afternoon by the swimming pool and enjoy dinner at your hotel. Get some rest before heading to the beach tomorrow!

Day 14

Get ready for pure paradise! Explore Bahía de las Águilas, considered one of the most pristine beaches in the Dominican Republic. This beach is located on the southwestern part of the island and protected by the surrounding environment, making it a Caribbean paradise. Enjoy your day soaking up the sun and gorgeous views! As the sun sets, enjoy your dinner on the beach and sleep under the stars for the night, taking in this tropical paradise.

Day 15

Head back to the capital for a tour of the Colonial Zone of Santo Domingo. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to the first university, cathedral and hospital in the Americas. Take a tour of the walled city and learn about the deep history of the first European settlement in the Americas. After touring the Colonial Zone and doing some souvenir shopping, head over to a special dinner and dance show at a typical Dominican restaurant.

Day 16

It’s time to say goodbye to your program leaders and head off to the airport bright and early in the morning.

Special Requests

Please chat to us if you have any special requests that you would like included in your Journey.
There is nothing too big, small, or out-of-the-box that we can’t handle.

What Next?

Please email us at rustic@rusticpathways.com.au to start designing your Journey!
We would be delighted to partner with your school to support the global education of your students.