The Dominican Republic (DR) has one of the most expansive coastlines in the Caribbean with nearly 1,000 miles (1,609 meters) of diverse coastal environments ranging from desert to lush coconut palm forests. Regardless of where visitors choose to drop anchor, grand mountain backdrops, white sand beaches and turquoise blue waters are sure to meet them. In the last several years, the DR has more than doubled the number of full-service marinas, some with unique features never before available in the Caribbean. Major marinas in the DR include Casa de Campo marina in the southeast, Cap Cana and Punta Cana Marinas in the east, Puerto Plata’s marinas in the north and marinas in Santo Domingo to the south. The newest Marina to be added to the DR’s vast offerings includes the beautiful Puerto Bahia Marina on the north end of Samaná Bay. Boaters, sports fishers and yachters will find a variety of marinas to choose from. At present time, the DR is able to dock yachts up to 250 feet in length overall (LOA). In fact, Cap Cana Harbor and Marina is now the largest world-class mega-yacht marina in the Caribbean.
The current entry procedure is as follows:
- Arrive at an authorized entrance port. You will be visited by Marina Guerra, M-2 and Department of Drugs, who may or may not check your boat. There is NO CHARGE FOR THEIR SERVICE.
- Be boarded by or visit the office of Immigration to have the passports of the entire crew stamped. There is a $43 US fee for the boat. For arriving passengers, there is a US$10 Tourist Card fee, which will be valid for 30 days.
- Some ports may assess charges pertinent to the harbor, such as refuse disposal or a harbor anchoring charge. However, most harbors do not impose such charges.
- One must obtain a “Despacho” in order to move the boat to another official entry harbor (Puerto habilitado). The Despacho is given at no charge; however it has been customary to give the Coast Guard a $15 tip for this service.
With regard to whether boats can anchor along the way before arriving at the next official harbor, the answer is YES. However, the boat must have a reason to stop prior to the next dispatched harbor (harbor named in the Despacho). The reasons can range from “I need to rest”, to “I need to buy something”, to “I had to make a repair”. Any reasonable reason that is given courteously is acceptable. However, yachts must show their papers to the official that will come out to visit the boat after it anchors. There is no charge for this service either. However in the DR, a small tip to the official and perhaps the fisherman that brought him out is considered customary.
The Cap Cana Marina is designed to be the most complete and modern marina in the Caribbean. When complete, the Cap Cana Marina will feature 1,200 slips handling yachts up to 250 feet long. A feature of the 370-acre facility includes several miles of man-made canals and waterways. Dream of the best angling experience in the Caribbean, and you will find it in these waters just beyond the Marina. In these depths, there is an abundance of fish throughout the year. The promise of Blue and White Marlin, Sailfish, Wahoo, and Tuna make this a favorite for anglers who frequently visit Cap Cana from all parts of the world. Recognizing the needs of boats and their crews, the Marina is equipped with meteorological buoyancy services unique to the Caribbean. When operating, the buoy measures wind and sea conditions which transmit to the crews. Other facilities in the Marina include governmental authorities such as harbor authorities and customs departments, wireless internet, and gratuitous shuttle services. With sixty meters in width and five meters deep, the Grand Canal of the Marina is surrounded by world class restaurants and luxury boutiques. Cap Cana will also offer prestigious services in each of its nautical clubs, confirming itself as the International Destination for Yachting and Fishing. Full maintenance services are available and fuelling systems fit to serve 120 gallons per minute. Sleeping lofts and additional freezers are available for crews and cargo, along with tugboats, taxis, and bait provisions.
Part of Roco Ki’s future phase includes a full-service marina. While details on the number of slips or length of acceptable yachts are not yet available, the Westin Roco Ki Beach & Golf resort will house a marina as part of its Aquatic Sports Center. Beyond the amenities of a full-service marina, the Center will also feature a lagoon for excursions, sailing lessons, fishing charters and more.
Marina Luperon has 200 slips for yachts from 30 to 80 feet LOA and an additional seven for those over 100 feet LOA. The Bay of Luperon, located a short distance west of Puerto Plata, is a nature preserve serving as a safe harbor for yachts from around the world. Approximately 25,000 boats cruise along the North Coast of the DR, which is the main route between Florida and Venezuela. In marine literature, the Bay of Luperon is considered the safest hurricane hole in the Caribbean. Approximately 160,000 square meters with a coastline of almost 200 linear meters in the south-eastern part of the Bay, with a natural water depth of 3-5 meters offer optimal conditions for the implementation of this unique project which will include a shopping center, restaurant, supermarket, stores, sanitary facilities, laundry facilities, communications center and offices for yacht club and harbor police as well as nearby apartments and villas.
The new Sans Souci port terminal, with capacity for 500 ships accommodating vessels up to 140 feet LOA, is part of the country’s Project for Revitalization and Expansion of Santo Domingo’s Seaport. The marina is located between Santo Domingo’s obelisk, across from the Eugenio Maria de Hostos Park and the Montesinos monument. The Sans Souci tourist port was officially inaugurated on Jan. 18, 2009. In this completed first phase, the Don Diego port has been remodeled and a new terminal built on the eastern side. When the Don Diego port operation began in 2006 in Santo Domingo, they received 40,000 cruise ship passengers in that first year. The 2007-2008 season has ended with more than twice that number, 82,000, with forecasts for 125,000 passengers in the 2009 season. The project will include high rise developments, with mixed residential and commercial use premiering in mid-2010. Sans Souci will be an entertainment center with a large, open commercial plaza, restaurants, shops and a 1,000-seat amphitheater. The City’s Avenida Espana will border the project, becoming a well-lit boulevard.
For more information, visit: www.fschad.com/dominican_ports/santo_domingo/
The Casa de Campo Marina is one of the most complete and prestigious in the Caribbean and is located where the Chavon River meets the Caribbean Sea, within the confines of the Casa de Campo Resort. A popular resort in La Romana among the rich and famous, Casa de Campo’s marina recently expanded and can now accommodate up to 350 yachts from 50 to 250 feet LOA. In addition, nine stores and a piano bar were added to the Marine Boulevard. The Marina was inspired by the old seaside villages of the Mediterranean and extends for more than 90,000 square meters. Designed by the Italian architect Gianfranco Fini, its colorful residential architecture consists of 105 units, including villas and town-house type apartments. Besides the residential apartments, the beautiful Piazza Portofino, with its restaurants, bars, ice cream parlor and cafes is the favorite meeting place for the Marina´s residents. At night, it comes alive as the focus of activity and provides the backdrop for sporting and cultural events. Designed to top international specifications, the Casa de Campo Marina is a world-class marina completely equipped to provide a full range of services, accommodate large and small vessels and offers a range of top-notch facilities to assist you in making your visit – experience as pleasurable and memorable as possible.
Nautico de Santo Domingo operates three marinas in the DR: Boca Chica, San Cristobal and Montecristi. The marina also hosts several fishing tournaments and regattas throughout the year.
To the west of Puerto Plata, Ocean World Adventure Park added a marina adjacent to its interactive marine park. Several interactive programs including personal encounters with dolphin, stingrays and sharks at the park make this one of the most unique marinas in the world. The full-service, state-of-the-art marina has 104 slips able to dock yachts up to 250 feet LOA. In addition, the 35-acre complex also offers weather service, laundry, showers, food and liquor delivery, car rental services, marine and fishing supplies, shops and a concierge service.
Puerto Bahia is a full service marina on the north end of Samaná Bay on the DR’s Northeast Coast and the top cruising ground of the Dominican Republic. Numerous secluded safe harbors, intimate caves, bountiful fishing grounds, great stretches of sandy beaches, and other alluring destinations invite exploration and offer memorable days of pure pleasure from Puerto Bahia.
Located west of Puerto Plata in Luperon, Puerto Blanco is a fully enclosed marina with the ability to moor 200 yachts with drafts up to eight feet. The marina is locally owned and is known for hosting nights of Dominican food and flair for those docking their yachts. The Luperon area is known for being a safe zone for yachts during hurricanes and tropical storms.
Christopher Columbus landed in this area over 500 years ago and it took his breath away. Naming the region Isabela after his beloved Spanish queen, the DR developed this area legendary with pirate stories into a historical center. Puerto Colon is a port, marina and a luxurious resort complex in the area. The marina, rated one of the Caribbean’s safe zones against hurricanes, has 200 slips for vessels up to 116 feet LOA.
This full-service marina is located at the Puntacana Resort & Club. With two docks and mooring for 43 yachts up to 70 feet LOA, the marina is well-liked with big game fishermen. In fact, this is one of the most popular areas to hold billfish tournaments in the DR.
Discover a wealth of information on travelling by Motorhome, Caravan or Boat when planning your holiday or trip of a lifetime
Which ever way you wish to travel, do it with style!