Puerto Plata Journals

Bill in the Dominican Republic - PUERTO PLATA

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An April 2002 trip to Puerto Plata by billmoy

Fuerte de San Felipe Photo, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic More Photos
Quote: Puerto Plata was nicknamed the "port of silver" by explorer Christopher Columbus in 1493.

Bill in the Dominican Republic - PUERTO PLATA

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Overview

Puerto Plata Photo, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Quote:
Puerto Plata is perched along the northern shore of the Dominican Republic, facing the wrath of the Atlantic Ocean. The winds seem to howl off the ocean, creating some odd effects that are warm and cool at the same time. The effect is like a rush of air from an open freezer on a hot summer day. The traffic can be quite aggressive at certain intersections, and the English-speaking tour guides are omnipresent around the main square, called Parque Luperon or just Parque Central. The park is the place to be if you need a taxi, an ice cream cone, or a souvenir to take home. The ochre-colored Iglesia de San Felipe lends some shade and a religious backbone to the south side of the square, which has a ...Read More

Sun Village Resort and Spa

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Hotel | "EMI Sun Village Beach Resort"

Sun Village Resort  and Spa Photo, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Quote:
The Sun Village Beach Resort is a beautiful new property located along the shores of Playa Cofresi, about five kilometers west of Puerto Plata. Most guests here book all-inclusive packages, where you get three meals a day and beverages while sporting a colorful wristband. Being the travelling renegade, I booked a room-only reservation. When checking in, I was handed a folder containing a site map, activities program calendar, and cards for the door access and towel rental. A bellhop led me to my room, a bewildering downhill journey past pools, canopies, buildings, paths. I saw an older gentleman being led about by his two struggling family members; someone with so little mobility should not be ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 24, 2002

Sun Village Resort and Spa
1 Playa Cofresi
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
809-970-3364

Sam's Bar and Grill

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Restaurant

Quote:
Located in the middle of town, Sam's Bar and Grill seems to be the Puerto Plata version of Cheers. This homey hangout is run by expats and attracts gringos from around the world. There is a rectangular bar area where you can sit right down, order a Presidente beer (the most popular local brew), and swap stories about traveling in the Dominican Republic. I happened upon a chap from Glasgow who was sporting the Rough Guide to the Dominican Republic (no foolin') and was off to search for good places for diving. I read the section about the Pico Isabel de Torres with keen interest, as I wanted to visit it the next day. The walls are filled with photos, posters and amusing caricatures of various famous and...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 23, 2002

Sam's Bar and Grill
Calle Jose del Carmen Ariza
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
0

El Provocon

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Restaurant

Quote:
El Provocon looks like a little chicken shack (which it what it is) in the center of Puerto Plata. However, the "pollo al carbon" cranked out here is quite tasty. You can watch the cook grill the chickens right before your eyes. The restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating, and also does a brisk take-out business. Place your order at the counter and sit down at one of the fire engine red tables. The menu is pretty much limited to grilled chicken in various serving sizes. My half-chicken was not too greasy, not too dry, and you can tell it was grilled to bring out its flavor. You order a la carte, so I ordered a side of moro (brown rice with small beans) and a soft drink. There are other beverages lik...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 23, 2002

El Provocon
Calle Separacion and Salome Urena
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
0

Quote:
This innocent dive of a restaurant is located at the foot of the road that leads to the Teleferico. It has a basic daily special with your selection of one kind of meat (I chose chicken over pork and beef), rice (white or "moro" with beans), cole slaw, and a scrumptious slice of fried plantain for about US$3. The diner has indoor and outdoor seating, and it seemed that all the customers (including myself) walked in warm and sweaty and looking for something refreshing. The ambience is sterile yet comfortable at the same time, although a few pesky flies were buzzing around. I ordered a cold Pepsi, and the amiable hostess (who spoke some English) asked if I wanted any ice. Not today, the pop was cold eno...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 23, 2002

D'Patricia Antijitos
Base of road leading to Teleferico
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Coconuts

Restaurant

Quote:
Coconuts is the buffet restaurant at EMI Sun Village Beach Resort, with serving times for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No reservations are required for dining here. Since I was on a room-only plan, I had to dine a la carte. I gave my room number to my particularly gracious host so that I could be billed for my meal. This is really a place to pig out, as the buffet contains salads, several warm entrees and vegetables, freshly sliced roast, made-to-order pasta, breads, and a dessert buffet with fresh fruits and little pastries. I arrived one night for a late dinner, and the spread was still well replenished. Soft drinks and liquor are included, and the servers are very generous in seeing that you have a...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 24, 2002

Coconuts
1 Playa Cofresi
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
(809) 970-7538

Pico Isabel de Torres

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Attraction | "Teleferico to Pico Isabel de Torres"

Quote:
The biggest question mark regarding my travels in Puerto Plata was whether the teleferico was functioning. I am glad to report that the teleferico was functioning, leading to what turned out to be my personal highlight in this region, my trip to the Reserva Cientifica Isabel de Torres. This is now a scientific reserve and a peaceful botanical garden. The Pico (or Loma) Isabel de Torres is about one kilometer west of central Puerto Plata. The station house at the base of the teleferico is a bit of a hike from the main street level. The overzealous guide was quick to latch onto me as I approached the station house (which contains a cafeteria and restrooms). I finally shook him...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 23, 2002

Pico Isabel de Torres
1 Km West Of Puerto Plata
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Fuerte de San Felipe

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Attraction

Fuerte de San Felipe Photo, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Quote:
The Fuerte de San Felipe sits majestically on a spit of land jutting into the Bay of Puerto Plata and the Atlantic Ocean. Its romantic setting contrasts with the varied history of the fort, which was built from 1541 to 1577 and stands as the oldest significant remnant in the city. An equestrian statue of General Gregorio Luperon stands tall as you approach this corner of the city. The grassy lawn in front of the fort entrance will usually play host to a few vendors selling snacks, seashells, and assorted trinkets. There was a mule tied to a tree, apparently for photo opportunities. You may also meet a tour guide or two, but you really do not need one for visiting unless you like to have someone...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 23, 2002

Fuerte de San Felipe
West of Av General Luperon
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Heladeria Mariposa

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Attraction

Quote:
This heavenly outpost is a good spot to escape from the hubbub of the Parque Luperon, as it is just along the north side of the square. It has the clean welcoming appearance of an old-fashioned soda fountain shop. There is a video game on premises; otherwise you provide your own entertainment or your own group of buddies to chat with. There is also a money exchange booth in case you cannot afford to buy a dessert. The prices are not dirt-cheap, but they are not that expensive either I ordered a slushie, with two cool flavors available: strawberry and pina colada. My strawberry slushie was devilishly refreshing but did not induce the side effect of brain freeze. Later that day, I ducked in to hav...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 24, 2002

Heladeria Mariposa
Calle Beller, north side of Parque Luperon
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic