We went on the Santo Domingo tour - the Capital of the Dominican Republic - was a four and a half hour drive from the resort. We stopped in La Romana on the way for "toilets" at a gift shop - by toilets I mean holes in the ground. The tour guide was awful, we couldn't seem to understand any of the languages she was trying to speak (English, Spanish and French - we are fluent in English and French). The history and culture of the city was interesting - be prepared to walk though! Eat before you go because there is no breakfast and lunch is at 2pm. Would I recommend this tour? For a history buff, yes. For a 20-something party animal, no.
Santo Domingo Tour Groups
Crystal & Curtis
Prieto Tours were absolutely great. The trip was $62 per person. They had us out from 6:30am until almost 9pm. The ride was long but our guide kept it interesting. They took us to a rest stop that had a store at which you didn't have to barter - just set prices which were low. Got some rum & coffee at really good prices. We then went to the Three Eyes Caves, The Santo Domingo Aquarium, the home of Diego Columbus (Christopher's son), the oldest Cathedral in the Americas (can't remember the name), another Cathedral which holds tombs of Dominican heros, a colonial market and went to several monuments. The $62 included admission to all of the above & a very nice lunch at a restaurant by the river. The tour guide also impressed me when he took care of an elderly woman who was sick from the beginning. He got her a taxi (made sure the driver spoke English) to take her to the hospital & made several calls to the hospital to follow up. I would recommend this tour company to anybody.
Santo Domingo Tour Groups
Kevin Anderson from MD
I feel somewhat obligated to write a review about one of the local tour booking companies out of Santo Domingo. My wife and I and another couple were recently there for a conference and had a little spare time. We were staying at the Melia hotel, a very nice place by the way, and they set us up with a company called Turinter. We arranged to take a half day tour with them for a tour of the city. This was not a good tour. We were hoping to get a guide who would know some of the city's rich history. We both spoke some spanish but hoped for a good english speaking guide as it would make things a lot easier. Our guide spoke about as much english as we did spanish and knew very little of the history. He and his driver were basically a very expensive taxi.
What they did know very well was how to find their way to the gift shops they wanted us to shop at. Turinter must get a good portion of their income from kickbacks from these shops, as they seemed to be the highest priority. All in all, a waste of money.
The next day we had already arranged with these people, and paid up front $320 for the 4 of us, to have them take us to Isla Saona. My wife is pregant and had injured her foot on the tour. We tried to get a refund for her and they took that as a cancel. They essentially no-showed the next day, absconding with our money. We tried various ways to get our money back but to no avail. Basically highway banditry and nothing we could do about it except contact you.
Turinter Travel is a scam. Please post this so that no one makes the same mistake we did. I would suggest that travelers to Santo Domingo either find another tour company with a shred of honor or, what I would suggest, find a cab driver they like and have him drive you to the sites you want to see.
It will cost a fraction of the tour cost and I was surprised when we found out how much our cabby knew. Far more flexible as well without the stops to the junky gift shops.