There Are No Eagles in Bahía de las Aguilas
The Dominican Republic. Resorts, cocktails and all you can eat buffets. At least, that's what most of the tourists that come here know about the DR but last weekend Joanna's family took me to another part of this beautiful country. We made a three day trip to one of the most beautiful beaches in the Dominican Republic: Bahía de las Aguilas (Eagles Bay) and combined it with El Hoyo de Pelempito. Check out this story for our day to day itinerary and how to visited both without a tour company.
Bahía de las Aguilas is an 8 km long beach along the southwestern coast near the border with Haiti. The bay is part of the Jaragua National Park and it is a protected area as is the surrounding park. At 323 km from the capital Santo Domingo and around 25 km from Pedernales (the nearest town), this beach is isolated in the middle of the deserted steppe of the park.
As we could only leave around noon, we decided to do the trip in two stages because it always takes a lot longer than planned. First from Santo Domingo to Paraíso and then the next morning from Paraíso to Eagles Bay where we spent the night in Pedernales. This trip basically takes you all the way along the Southern coast to the border with Haiti along the most dramatic seaviews.
We set off for this epic road trip around noon with Joanna's parents and her younger brother. Almost immediately we were stopped by the infamous Dominican traffic. It was clear for me now why the DR has one of the highest traffic accident rates in the world. They all drive like crazy people here. Rules don't mean shit and apparently everybody is competing in being the most impatient person in the world. Crazy town! Luckily Joanna's dad is an awesome driver who knows to just go with the flow and after a while we where out of the capital. The route took us through the towns of Baní, Azua and Barahona.
One of the things that struck me the most was the music everywhere. I already told you that Dominicans love music and they like it loud but this was a whole new level of loud. The sound waves pumping out of speakers in bars and trucks made my ears bleed and I was only hearing it from the inside of the car. I guess hearing problems must be an issue here as I saw guys sitting inches from the blasting speakers casually sipping their Presidente.
The further we went, the more beautiful the beaches and views became. The seawater here has a sureal blue and turquoise color with milky white waves that crash on the shore. It kept amazing me everytime a new view appeared around the corner. In the early evening we arrived in Paraíso where we stayed in a little hotel a few hundred meters from the beach.
The next day we only had to drive for two hours but the landscape changed drastically in that time. From palm trees and banana fields to cacti and red rocks. It was amazing to see how quickly it changed and soon we arrived at Bahía de las Aguilas. There were few cars parked there so we were happy to see that the masses find this beach too difficult to reach. Still, a few touts came to us immediately trying to sell us more than we needed but hey, they have to make a living to, right?
The easiest way to get to the actual beach is to take a boat that drops you off or a 4WD. The boat ride doesn't take long but it has some cool cliffs and big rocks where you can be flabbergasted by the amazing color of the water. The contrast of the water with those rocks is unbelievable. And then, at last we arrived at the most beatiful white sand beach with crystal clear water. The shades of blue going from dark to light turquoise and it just went on and on as far as the eye could see. I've never seen anything like it.
They dropped us off far away from other people which was awesome and as soon as we touched the water and felt the soft sand between our toes...: "Oh yeah... paradise!" We spent the whole afternoon switching between floating in that amazing water and catching some shade under the trees on the beach.
Because pictures can only show you so much I made a little video to show you just how amazingly clear the water is. The resorts don't come even close to how much fun we had on this trip.
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