Getting Around Puerto Plata
The best way to get around Puerto Plata is by taxi. They're cheap -- your average ride costs about $3 to S5 USD -- and drivers are willing to bargain to an even lower price. Minibuses are another popular (and negotiable) way to get around and can get you as far as Sosúa, a town east of Puerto Plata on the coast. Rental cars, although expensive, are available from the three major airports: Gregorio Luperón International Airport (POP) is about 10 miles east of central Puerto Plata, the Las Américas International Airport (SDQ) is around 100 miles southeast and the Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ) is about 150 miles southeast.
|On Foot||Walking is easily the cheapest way to get around, especially if you're staying near the beach or at an all-inclusive resort. But if you're staying farther out or if you plan on taking daytrips, you should probably take a taxi or bus.|
|Car||If you're taking a daytrip or traveling from one of the farther out airports, rent a car. But for travelers who plan on sticking to the beach should pass on the unnecessary hassle. Rentals don't come cheap; companies charge up to $600 USD a week never mind the insurance and other fees. And driving should come with a healthy dose of bravery and a proficient understanding of Spanish, to read the street signs. Not only that, but side streets are in poor shape and the local driving habits can be aggressive.|
|Taxis||Taxis are available throughout Puerto Plata; they can easily be found in the central plaza and most fares will cost you around $5 USD. It's a good idea to negotiate the fare before entering a cab, especially if accepting a ride from an unmarked taxi.|
|Motoconchos||A ride to Playa Dorada costs less than $1 USD if you take the popular motoconchos, or taxi motorcycles, which are also found in the central plaza. But these drivers rarely provide helmets for passengers, so we recommend sticking to the taxi cabs.|
|Minibuses||Privately owned minibuses operate routes between Puerto Plata's central plaza and Playa Dorada, and some all the way to Sosúa. This is a pretty cheap way to get around -- fares start at about $2.50 USD -- but with no set schedule, it can also be unreliable. Minibuses run daily from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and we recommend negotiating the fare before catching a ride.|
Entry & Exit Requirements
All United States citizens must travel with a valid passport to enter the Dominican Republic. In addition, you'll need to obtain a travel visa either before traveling (at the Dominican Embassy) or upon arrival (at the airport). This visa allows travelers to remain in the country for up to 60 days. For more information on entry and exit requirements, visit the U.S. Department of State's site.