Make rural Dominican Republic your home for a week as you experience daily life in one of the country's most rural and remote areas. Enjoy the laid back and friendly nature of Dominicans as they welcome you into their homes and into their hearts. Facilitate educational activities at a local school and watch the students smile as they show you how to throw a baseball or dance merengue. Immerse yourself in the local culture as you make this small mountain town your home for the week.
Take part in service projects with locals that will increase the standard of living in these rural communities. Improve the local infrastructure by building a community center, irrigating agricultural fields, or constructing a natural water filtration system. Learn about the lack of educational opportunities available for many children in these communities and work with your fellow peers to create fun and instructive activities for the local kids. After your week in the mountains, return home knowing you helped improve the quality of life for a community that welcomed you with open arms. Take your new energy and enthusiasm for positively impacting others and apply your newly acquired skills to meaningful service projects back in your hometown.
Enjoy a weekend of sun relaxing on one of the Dominican Republic's beautiful beaches. Join the locals in a game of beach volleyball, swim in the crystal clear water, or wander through the colorful beachfront shops. Go snorkeling in the Caribbean waters, or simply lay back an enjoy the view. Then watch a breathtaking sunset as you enjoy the comforting flavors of typical Dominican cuisine with your peers and staff. Spend the night along side the ocean, with the sound of the waves crashing outside your window.
Get your adrenaline pumping as you explore 27 Charcos, a series of 27 waterfalls and limestone pools located in the interior mountains of the country. Swim under these cascading falls while experiencing the beauty of this natural treasure. You will soon realize why this is one of the local’s favorite swimming spots. Then challenge yourself during a morning of optional activities that could include rafting the class III & IV rapids of the Yaque Rio del Norte, going on a horseback ride to the Baiguate waterfall or partaking in a thrilling high ropes course.
Students depart JFK international airport in New York City for Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic late Tuesday evening arriving at Las Americas International Airport in Santo Domingo just after midnight on Wednesday morning. Students will be met at the airport by Dominican Republic Country Director and escorted to a hotel which is located about 5 minutes from the airport and about 20 minutes outside of Santo Domingo.
After a late arrival students will be given the chance to sleep in a bit late. After breakfast, head into the heart of the Dominican Republic and settle into your new home. In the afternoon, take a tour of the community and get to know the service projects you'll be working on. Meet with local leaders, enjoy a swim in the river, or play a soccer game with the local kids. Enjoy a home cooked traditional Dominican meal as you get to know your fellow peers at the base house in the evening.
The next two days will consist of full days of service. Rural Dominican Republic is home to some of the lowest standards of living in the country. Houses often lack running water or electricity, and sewage systems are absent in many places. You will work alongside locals to help raise the living standards. You will also visit the local school and participate in cultural and educational activities with the students. In the evenings, help university students practice their English in Jarabacoa, a cool mountain town surrounded by three peaks over 3000 meters.
After breakfast head to Puerta Plata for a full day of relaxing and touring on the different beaches of the north coast. Swim in the turquoise water of the Caribbean, soak up the sun, and enjoy a lunch of fresh fish. Spend the night in a cozy beach town before heading to the Twenty Seven Charcos Rio Damajagua in the morning. Experience a waterfall adventure you won't find anywhere else in the world and marvel in the awe-inspiring beauty of the Dominican Republic's best kept secret as you explore these twenty-seven pools etched out of limestone. In the afternoon head back to the base house for dinner.
Have breakfast with the group at the base house, then head back to work on service projects in the community.
In the morning students will have the option of white water rafting on Rio Yaque del Norte for an additional cost. After lunch head back to Santo Domingo for your final night. Put on your nice outfit and dancing shoes for a night out on the town enjoying city life and dancing the night away. Have a special dinner at a typical Dominican restaurant and check out the typical dance show before you head to the airport for a late night flight.
If you are heading home, you must say your last goodbyes to your new friends and head off to the airport. Students headed off to another Rustic Pathways program in the Dominican Republic will stay at base hotel Tuesday night and join their new group on Wednesday morning. Students connecting to elsewhere in Latin America will catch a flight either Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning.
Rustic Pathways reserves the right to change, alter, or amend the daily itinerary for this trip at any time. Changes can be made for various reasons including changes in flight or program schedules, changes in the schedules of various external tours incorporated in our trips, the addition of new activities into a trip, or the substitution of an old activity for a new activity. The itinerary shown here provides a good outline of the anticipated daily schedule for this program. As with any travel program, some changes may occur.
PLEASE NOTE – Rustic Pathways will not be responsible for ANY lost or stolen items. During travel it is common for items to be lost or stolen so please bring only items you are prepared to part with.
PLEASE DO NOT OVER PACK!
-A small backpack is the best carry-on bag
-A medium sized duffel bag or large backpack work best. Wheeled bags are OK as long as they are medium sized and can easily be carried like a duffle over rough terrain.
Clothing Items - Please bring at least a few outfits that can get dirty or destroyed for service work or adventure activities.
(Please pack all items that could leak in a PLASTIC or ZIPLOCK bag)
*Note: See the following link for ideas on small, personal first aid kits:
Direct flight from New York to Santo Domingo takes approximately 3-4 hours.
Yes. All flights between the Dominican Republic and the USA will have a flight leader starting in New York. Return flights to the USA will also have a flight leader as far as New York. Flights from the Dominican Republic to Costa Rica, Panama, and Peru will not be escorted.
Students from the United States and Canada will be automatically issued a 30 day tourist visa upon entry into the Dominican Republic, for the cost of $10. STUDENTS MUST HAVE $10 UPON ENTRY TO PAY FOR THE TOURIST CARD.
During this trip, students will visit the areas of Santo Domingo, Monteplata, Duarte, and Puerto Plata.
Rustic Pathways does not make recommendations regarding immunizations.† We strongly suggest that you consult with a travel doctor or your family physician for medical recommendations based on the area where the student will be traveling (as listed above). You can also check the Center for Disease Control website at http://www.cdc.gov for more information.
On Tuesday afternoon students will return to Santo Domingo. They will have a special night out in Santo Domingo and then head to the airport for a morning flight home on Wednesday. On Tuesday evening students transferring to other programs in Latin America can catch a flight to Costa Rica, Panama, or Peru. Students connecting to other programs in the Dominican Republic will stay at a hotel Tuesday evening and join their new trip on Wednesday morning.
This program will be based in a rural town in the area of Jarabacoa about 2 hrs from Santo Domingo.
Students should be prepared for hot, humid weather in the 80s and 90s during the day with occasional rain showers. Since the base is located in the mountains in the evenings the temperature will go down into the 60s.
This program does not include formal Spanish language instruction; however students will have multiple opportunities to practice Spanish with their guides and with the local community.
Students will work on small scale construction projects that will help improve community and school infrastructure. Students will also facilitate educational and cultural projects with local youth and be involved in environmental projects.
This program is appropriate for most physical activity levels. Students should be prepared for medium physical activity including short hikes and some manual labor during the service projects.
The majority of costs associated with the program are included on this trip. Students should have extra allowance money if they wish to buy souvenirs. Students should also bring extra money if they wish to purchase additional snacks or soda from the local grocery store. Students may also have the opportunity to participate in optional activities such as white water rafting for an additional cost.
Rafting - $50, High Ropes Course $16, Horseback Riding $16
Occasionally Rustic Pathways staff identify new opportunities throughout the summer that we feel will enhance the students overall experience and we will offer students the opportunity to participate at an additional cost. Optional or included activities may also be canceled at the staff’s discretion.
Students will be eating traditional Dominican food prepared by local cooks and restaurants.† Breakfast may include plantains or toast with eggs, fruits and cereal. Lunch and dinner will be typical dishes which consists of rice, beans, salad and a meat/seafood dish or veggie dishes.
Tap water in the Dominican Republic is not recommended, we will provide bottled water for our students throughout the course of the program.
During their time in the Dominican Republic students will stay in a few different places. In Santo Domingo we will stay at a hotel near the airport. In Jarabacoa we will be staying in a base house rented out by Rustic Pathways right in the community. Students will also stay at a small hotel in a cozy beach town on the country's northern coast for one night during the program.
The bathrooms are located at the facilities and will either be right in the room shared with another student, or be communal bathrooms shared with other Rustic Pathways students of the same gender. They will all have running water and American style toilets. Showers are rustic and no hot water may be available.
There are typically more girls than boys however the exact numbers vary from week to week.
Rustic Pathways generally strives to maintain a ratio of approximately 1 guide for every 5 students. On the program, there will be three guides. Our guides go through a rigorous selection process including interviews with our Country Director and a full background check.
All of our programs have guides that are certified with First Aid and CPR training. Many of our guides are also qualified Wilderness First Responders, EMTs, Wilderness EMTs, or Life Guards.
Students should pack enough clothes and personal items to last through the program. Laundry may be available at some of the hotels, at an extra cost.
Students will have limited to no access to internet during the program. They will be able to purchase international phone cards in the Dominican Republic, which can be used to call home. We will facilitate at least one call a week to parents.
Contact Us: For more information about Mountain Air and Village Service you can email email@example.com.
Mountain Air and Village Service combines well with the following programs.
Ages: 14 to 18 years old
Length: 9 days from the USA
Hours: Up to 24 hours awarded
International airfare is not included in the above cost. Please check our Travel Desk for airfare pricing and specifics.
|Departs Tue||Returns Wed||Availability|
|25 Jun||3 Jul||Very Limited|
|2 Jul||10 Jul||Very Limited|
|9 Jul||17 Jul||Very Limited|
|16 Jul||24 Jul||Very Limited|
|23 Jul||31 Jul||Very Limited|
|30 Jul||7 Aug||Very Limited|
|6 Aug||14 Aug||Very Limited|
Dates shown are inclusive of travel time from the United States. Most Rustic Pathways trips interconnect, allowing you to design your own perfect summer program.Apply Now