Monte Plata is a Province located in the southeast of the Dominican Republic, where the most exciting activities and incredible places await those who dare to explore it. Just an hour’s drive from Santo Domingo, Monte Plata is an unmissable earthly paradise.
Table of Contents
- Why visit the province of Monte Plata?
- What is the best season to visit Monte Plata in the Dominican Republic?
- Top 5: What to see and do in Monte Plata
- Final words
Why visit the province of Monte Plata?
Did you know that they call it ” The Emerald Province ” due to its greenery and abundant vegetation? The natural settings that we find in this region can be defined with a single word: spectacular.
In fact, if you decide to travel by private vehicle through this area, you will travel through lush meadows in front of the Sierra de Yamasá and explore lush and dense tropical forests next to musical rivers. In addition, the different shades of green will not go unnoticed, from the darkest olive to the darkest, and brightest of jades.
As we can see, Monte Plata has a lot to offer us, which is why it is one of the main ecological tourist destinations, thanks to its lush mountains, rivers, waterfalls, natural pools, and much more.
In addition to being a city with a large reserve of natural landscapes and cultural activities, it has an economy based on agriculture, especially in the production of bananas, cocoa, and sugar cane. In addition, it offers a number of tourist attractions and an active cultural life that every traveler deserves to experience during their stay in the region.
In fact, Monte Plata is known for its popular music, which is very lively and colorful. A large number of music bands and traditional dances can be found in and around the city.
Although it is not a very touristy city, it does contain a wide variety of rivers and waterfalls perfect for lovers of ecotourism or those who wish to enjoy much more of nature in its wild state.
Among some of its most iconic spaces, the Salto de Socoa and other impressive rivers that will seduce you with their sounds and warm, crystalline waters stand out. Keep reading, because below, we will tell you in detail all the tourist sites that you cannot miss.
What is the best season to visit Monte Plata in the Dominican Republic?
Undoubtedly, the best season to visit the province of Monte Plata is from December to the end of March.
The climate remains warm throughout the year, reaching an average annual temperature in Monte Plata is 29° and numerous rainfalls. However, it is during these months when the rains are scarce and the climate is more pleasant.
Top 5: What to see and do in Monte Plata
Without further ado, let’s now see what to see and what to do in this wonderful province of the Caribbean country:
- Take a walk in Bayaguana and discover its natural treasures and monuments
We begin our list of the best things to do in Monte Plata with a visit to the town of Bayaguana. Founded in 1606 by Europeans, the Bayaguana municipality is home to most of the city’s waterfalls and water parks. We recommend you to be prepared, because it will surprise you and you will not want to get out of it.
This municipality was declared as such in 1982, after the creation of the province of Monte Plata. Among some of the best tourist places, we have: the Salto Alto spa and the Church of Santo Cristo de Bayaguana.
During your walk through the colorful town of Bayaguana, you will notice that its main economic activity is agriculture and livestock. Its main products for export are its crops of sugar cane, cocoa, citrus fruits, and cattle breeding for the meat and dairy trade.
There is no doubt that you will love to enjoy a delicious lunch with the best Dominican flavor after enjoying the warm waters of Salto de Socoa (which we will talk about later). In this charming town, places to eat are numerous with outdoor patios to cool off.
One of the most popular Dominican dishes is rice, with beans and a serving of meat. Establishments usually serve generous dishes with a unique flavor that will delight your palate while you share with family, friends or partner.
Once you have tasted your lunch, be sure to take a look inside the Church of Santo Cristo de los Milagros, which was built in 1789 in a colonial style, being one of the most important temples in the Caribbean country.
Legend has it that the image of Christ carved in wood (which measures a meter and a quarter), the centerpiece of the interior of the Church, was found in the 17th century by a young woman, and that, after this finding, her blind mother recovered the view. Believers flock here each year to pray for a miracle or to give thanks for one.
- Visit the magical Salto de Socoa
Without a doubt, the Salto de Socoa is the maximum tourist wonder of this region and one that you will surelyV love as much as we do, and the thousands of travelers who come to its spaces every season. This incredible waterfall is located in the middle of nature, and you can reach it from the town of Bayaguana, in just 25 minutes.
You can also go to this waterfall from Santo Domingo. In fact, it will take you only 40 minutes by private car. In addition, it is the easiest waterfall to access because its entrance is directly from the Autopista del Nordeste (highway 7) from Santo Domingo to Samaná, and about 60 km north of the Autopista de Las Américas.
The route to this waterfall is almost as impressive as the Salto de Agua, since it is located between Santo Domingo and Samaná. You will see sections full of life and color, with paths lined with pine trees and rocky passages similar to Haitises National Park. Without a doubt, it is one of the most idyllic walks in the Dominican Republic.
Before you reach the waterfall, you will need to park your vehicle and pay an entrance fee. Then, you will have to take another walk of a few minutes from the parking lot to the tropical forest where the Salto de Socoa is located, following some steps with solid wood railings. If you have good health and physical stamina, it won’t be a problem for you.
Upon arrival, you will see that it is one of the most impressive natural landscapes in the region, and one of the most visited from the capital. You will see it in the center of abundant vegetation, rocks, birds, butterflies and mosquitoes fluttering everywhere you look. You will feel like you are in the middle of a tropical postcard image.
In fact, it is an incredible waterfall to which many tourists come to admire it, since the most remarkable beauty of this space lies not only in its waterfall and its natural pool but also in the wildest nature and the tropical forest that surrounds it.
In addition, the Salto de Socoa is one of the areas with the most environmental resources in the Dominican Republic. If you wish, you can swim in its waters. In fact, some areas are enabled for people who know how to swim and those who are not very good at it, varying in depth.
You’ll also see a rope running across the surface to the other end, which provides support for people who don’t know how to swim or don’t swim well enough. If this is your case, try to stay close to the rope, without going too far towards the waterfall.
It should be noted that, although there are no changing rooms or benches to place your belongings, you will see many large rocks to leave your things there without getting them wet from the water, or to cover yourself while you change your outfit.
Do not let set aside a day in your travel itinerary to visit it! You will not regret.
- Relax at the Comate Spa
The Comate Spa is located just 3 km from the town of Bayaguana. In fact, if you travel by private car, you will see the sign indicating the way. Unlike Salto de Socoa, this natural pool is equipped with many areas to sit and change clothes.
In addition, it has a restaurant that offers delicious Dominican dishes for you to enjoy during your stay. As you will see upon arrival, it is a popular, very traditional Dominican and Caribbean-style spa with crystal clear, cold, uncontaminated waters.
The Spa originates from the Sierra de Agua hill, in the center of the municipality and south of Los Haitises National Park. In addition, it is made up of imposing puddles and streams of water between the rocks. It is also one of the meeting points for camping among the locals.
As a curious fact, the spa is classified as the largest so far in the area, expanding along the Comate River, a tributary of the Ozama River. You will find some thatched huts to rest, and tables placed near the river to play dominoes, which is a very famous game among Dominicans.
In addition to this, the locals usually relax on the banks of the river, or immerse themselves in it in the middle of its mini waterfalls. It is also usually a space with many small roses to sit while the water falls in the shallow areas. As an important part of Monte Plata, it is a clean and safe environment.
- Go hiking in Sabana Grande de Boyá
Founded in 1950, it is a municipality of Monte Plata that is perfect for ecotourism. The region sustains itself mainly from sugarcane crops, as well as other livestock and agricultural activities.
Although it is one of the youngest municipalities, it is a potential place to attract travelers and adventurers, as it is an ideal place for hiking and mountain biking. Until now, many of its surrounding natural sites are protected, but it does not fail to attract the interest of many travelers.
If you’re wondering about other places where you can hike and enjoy the beautiful landscapes, you can’t miss Round Mountain.
- Do not miss the High Jump
As we mentioned in previous lines, Monte Plata is a region full of rivers and waterfalls, so in our list we cannot fail to recommend another of its most famous waterfalls: El Salto Alto.
Located a few kilometers from Bayaguana, and about 1 hour and a half from the capital Santo Domingo, Salto Alto is one of those little-known places that is worth visiting. It is made up of 3 waterfalls with crystalline waters, one next to the other.
Each one of them falls from more than 10 meters high, making it a perfect water park to enjoy and swim peacefully. In fact, Dominicans usually go with family or friends to take a refreshing bath. There is also a restaurant that offers delicious drinks and typical foods.
For the adventurous, it is recommended to go in all-terrain vehicles, since the road is full of exuberant vegetation with leafy trees. However, it is essential not to go to this jump during the rains, as the road becomes dangerous.
You will marvel at landscapes full of stunning green hues before you arrive, so you will soon feel connected to the surrounding nature in a unique and special way. It really is worth investing a day trip from the city!
- Chepa’s cave
Also located in the town of Bayaguana, the Cueva de Chepa is a rock formation with a height of 249 meters above sea level. At the geological level, it is one more extension of the Haitises formation, the most important park in the Caribbean and the Caribbean country.
In the vicinity of the cave, streams sprout that form the flow of the Comate and Comatillo rivers. Inside the cave, we find a network of passageways and several spaces that cover a total of 500 meters, where stalactite formations are abundant.
The interior natural characteristics of the cave make it possible for it to have a varied and numerous fauna, with equally abundant vegetation. Inside, it is rich in different ecosystems fed by a large influx of water and humidity, which allows their activity and development.
Among the species that we find in the cave, we have cave swallows, and a colony of bats, home to thousands of them. In fact, we found the latter in the darkest part of the cave.
While the swallows are located in the part closest to the entrance, which is also the area with the most light and ventilation, optimal conditions for them to live properly.
We also find small colonies of other species, such as arachnids and beetles. As a curious fact, these small animals depend on bat waste to survive.
Upon entering the cave, you will see that these animals thrive thanks to the imperceptible exchange with other animals, such as their fruits or seeds, as well as the eggs and young of the others. A world unto itself waiting to be discovered!
Monte Plata is, in a few words, a magnificent place to do ecotourism and taste the lifestyle of Dominicans and residents in the midst of its natural landscapes full of greenery and that tropical exuberance so typical of the region. It is also an ideal space to carry out different fun and relaxing activities, so planning an excursion from Santo Domingo will leave you with an unforgettable experience.