The Dominican Republic is a favorite Caribbean resort destination, popular among vacationers and honeymooners and best known for its beaches and luxury all-inclusive hotels and resorts; though the island has much more to offer visitors beyond the beaches and resort areas. Adrenaline junkies can head inland to the mountainous northern central region of the Dominican Republic to experience one of the island’s most exhilarating adventures—white water rafting in the Dominican Republic on the Río Yaque del Norte (Yaque del North River).
Not only is the Yaque River the longest river in the Dominican Republic, but it’s also one of the longest rivers in the Caribbean, extending throughout the central region of the Dominican Republic, from the Pico del Yaque Mountain, through Jarabacoa (where it becomes the Yaque del North) and Santiago de los Caballeros. It opens out into the Atlantic Ocean, just south of San Fernando de Monte Cristi.
The Yaque River offers trips for rafters of all levels, from novice to expert. Independent travelers can take a guagua—the local form of public transportation in the Dominican Republic—to the town of Jarabacoa which serves as the jumping off point for kayaking and white water rafting trips along the Yaque del North River; however one of the best ways to experience white water rafting in the Dominican Republic is on a day tour departing from the coastal resort city of Puerto Plata.
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Accompanied by a trained local guide, your white water rafting adventure along the Yaque del North River will alternate between rapids and calmer stretches of river, allowing you time to appreciate the natural setting of the island’s interior and even do a bit of sightseeing. Once back on dry land, you’ll have the opportunity to explore more of the region. Other popular activities in and around Jarabacoa include hiking, mountain climbing, waterfall-repelling and horseback riding.