This post was last updated on September 12th, 2016
It didn’t take us long to fall in love with the Dominican Republic. From the delicious tastes of Santo Domingo to the gorgeous beaches of the Northern Coast, the DR managed to exceed all our expectations—so much so that we were looking up return tickets the moment we got back to Costa Rica!
One of the reasons we enjoyed our time in Sosua, Dominican Republic so much was the huge variety of fun things to do outdoors, all within easy access. Whether you’re seeking adrenaline-pumping adventures or laid-back fun-in-the-sun, there’s a little something for everyone in and around Sosua.
We had a rental car, which we would highly recommend if you want to experience the Dominican Republic that’s outside of the resort walls. That said, driving is hair-raising, to say the least; it’s best if you’ve had practice driving in various conditions around the world.
We know we’ll be back in Sosua to explore more of the Dominican Republic soon. In the meantime, here are eight awesome activities you won’t want to miss along the DR’s Northern Coast:
Sosua, Dominican Republic: 8 Outdoor Activities You Won’t Want To Miss
If you’ve ever thought about giving windsurfing a try, then Cabarete is the beach for you. Just about ten minutes from Sosua, Cabarete is a long and beautiful beach that has been attracting windsurfers since the mid-80s. Great conditions year-round for both beginners and advanced windsurfers means just about anyone can give the sport a try!
Windsurfing in Cabarete was one of the best things we did on our entire trip. It’s not easy, but once we got a hang of how to maneuver the kite, we were surfing straight out and back without falling off too many times.
A two-hour lesson is $50; there are multiple shops offering lessons right on Cabarete Beach.
Cabarete is also a hot-spot for kitesurfers. Every evening before sunset, the sky is dotted with colorful kites as experts make the most of the high winds. We didn’t give kitesurfing a go this time around, but Dan said he would without a doubt take a course on our next visit.
Don’t worry if kitesurfing sounds a bit too adventurous—it’s still worth it to relax with a drink and watch as the pros perform.
Damajagua Cascadas – 27 Waterfalls
We didn’t have time to fit this all-day waterfall adventure into our itinerary, but we’ve heard great things about 27 Waterfalls from absolutely everyone who’s been. Each waterfall is a bit different, with opportunities for sliding and jumping into the crystal-clear water below.
Fun Fact: 27 Waterfalls is actually a bit of a mistranslation from the Spanish name. 27 refers to the number of pools along a total of 12 waterfalls.
Most tours will pick up guests from their hotels in Puerto Plata, Sosua or Cabarete. Read reviews or book your waterfall excursion here.
Dudu Laguna (Blue Lagoon)
The Blue Lagoon is a stunning cenote surrounded by limestone. The water is freezing, but it’s an idyllic spot for a swim on a hot Caribbean day. If you’re brave, there’s a crazy high zip line from which you can jump. I wasn’t brave enough, but Dan did it twice (primarily because I messed up the photo the first time!) Take a close look at the photo below and you can see just how high the zipline was!
Be sure to arrive at the Blue Lagoon early in the morning. We were the only ones there when we arrived, but by mid-day the tour buses were arrived and there was a constant stream of teenagers plunging into the water.
The Blue Lagoon is located in Cabrera, about an hour and a half from Sosua. We recommend combining this activity with the next one below for the ultimate day in the Dominican Republic!
There are so many bays and beaches to discover along the Dominican Republic’s North Coast. Between Sosua and Cabrera, we recommend first stopping at Playa Diamante. When we went, we were the only people there, minus a handful of fisherman and one local family. This bay is protected by two lush cliffs, which results in perfectly glassy water. It’s ideal for swimming or whiling away the afternoon with a Presidente beer or two!
After Playa Diamante, be sure to stop by Playa Grande. This expansive beach is not only lovely, it’s also one of the top spots to order fresh local fish that’s grilled to order, then served at plastic tables and chairs on the sand. This was some of the best food we had in the Dominican—and it was also one of the cheapest!
Finally, end the day at Playa Alicia, just a minute from the more popular Sosua Beach. This quiet beach is the perfect spot to watch the sunset, and free from the haggling and vendors at some of the other nearby beaches.
Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP)
Don’t miss the opportunity to take in the beauty of Sosua from the water. You’ll have to leave in the morning before the winds pick up, but the early wake-up call is worth it. On the day we paddled, the water was so clear that we could see straight to the bottom of the ocean floor from the top of our boards!
Just about an hour of paddle boarding from Sosua will take you to a great snorkel spot. Cool off in the water and check out the tropical fish before paddling back to shore.
Diving and Snorkeling
Sosua is renowned for its diving, so if you’re an avid snorkeler or diver, you won’t want to miss the opportunity to explore underwater. We had just done some epic snorkeling in Thailand, so our snorkel-SUP combo was enough for us. However, the calm conditions and warm water off Sosua Beach promise to please.
Last but not least, surfers will be happy to know that there is a great surfing spot just a few minutes north of Sosua called Encuentro Beach. There are a few vendors who rent surfboards right on the beach, and multiple breaks to take advantage of (from beginner to advanced.) There’s not much to do at Encuentro other than surf, but it’s got a great laid-back vibe and feels worlds away from the all-inclusive resorts at nearby Puerto Plata. Early morning surf sessions are typically best as the winds have yet to pick up.
Where To Stay
We won five nights at the spectacular Casa Veintiuno in a luxury travel auction. This boutique bed and breakfast is hands-down one of the most incredible places we’ve every stayed. With only three rooms and ultimate five-star service, everything about a stay at Casa Veintiuno will have you feeling like a VIP.
What’s more, Casa Veintiuno doubles as the best restaurant in Sosua. Expect local and European dishes made with only the freshest local organic produce. Try the truffle oil risotto—you won’t regret it!
If you’re ready to experience the highlights of the Dominican Republic’s North Coast, then you’re going to love a visit to Sosua. We can’t wait to go back to experience more!