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Old 17-02-2016, 12:28   #16
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

[QUOTE=akprb;2048608]We were there ages ago (1996) and had a great time. Love to know how it's changed but at the time was the real run down third world port with a fun spirit. The locals were all friendly along with good enough little restaurants. Just fun reminiscing about the same :-)

Sounds so much like home!!
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Old 17-02-2016, 14:29   #17
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

Have been there 5 or 6 times. Never had a bad experience and met some really lovely sailors from all over the world. Came across this article a few weeks ago. This may help. Peter
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Old 17-02-2016, 15:17   #18
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

I am here in luperon now, been here a little over a week. The water in the bay is filthy as others have already said but other then that we absolutely love the place. What exactly would you like to know?
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Old 17-02-2016, 16:31   #19
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

Curious about the windward passage; for those who've taken that root, where have you stayed/anchored along the way?
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Old 17-02-2016, 16:44   #20
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

Quote:
Originally Posted by akprb View Post
We were there ages ago (1996) and had a great time. Love to know how it's changed but at the time was the real run down third world port with a fun spirit. The locals were all friendly along with good enough little restaurants. Just fun reminiscing about the same :-)

The only place we really didn't care for in the Caribbean was Samana, as far as a feeling of safety, for what it's worth.
Well 10 years later (and now 10 years dated), we had the same opinion of Samana in 2006. Thankfully we were west bound so we essentially cleared in and out simultaneously. 4 hours on the island was enough and we left immediately on a direct run to the Turks. Take it for what it's worth but our DR experience was not at all like the brochure.
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Old 17-02-2016, 18:14   #21
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

Spent close to a year in Luperon in 2004/05. We explored the whole of DR by car and motor cycle and thoroughly enjoyed the people we met throughout. There were 3 or 4 hurricanes which were in the vicinity but we were safe in the mangroves for them all.
Luperon bay is filthy especially after the hurricanes and we ran our water maker outside for the most part. Enjoyed the resaraunts, baseball, travel but especially the peoples of DR and the international cruisers. For the hurricane season there were over 300 boats anchored in the bay and generally most friendly. The only issue was a group that had been tossed from Marithon, Florida and were a bit suspect. It is what it is and if you want to be in a pampered marina this is not the place for you.
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Old 17-02-2016, 18:38   #22
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

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Originally Posted by clifflyon View Post
I hear so much negative stuff from cruisers in the Exumas about Luperon..
Nuff said. You have to add a big grain of salt to anything cruisers in Georgetown tell you. They are very inventive in coming up with reasons not to leave the Exumas.

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Old 17-02-2016, 21:11   #23
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

I go to places like luperon because it's not touristy. that way I can meet local people and get a feel for the true culture of the place. the tourist locations are just a first world image and the locals become jaded by the tourist that feel they should be waited on. It's amazing how much you get when you go to a country, with the thought of giving instead of getting.....priceless!
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Old 18-02-2016, 07:07   #24
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

You might get something out of this posting. Smooth Sailing in the Windward Passage
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Old 18-02-2016, 08:15   #25
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

to the op...going west around Haiti with intent of going to PR. Vi's etc. is out. forget it....go east along the DR coast..get Van Sants Gentlemans cruising guide...
I have been wanting to ask these same questions about DR..
I never went to Luperon back in the late '70's...from the Bahamas I went to Puerto Plata and then Samana...We had a wonderful time...no tourista stuff, no super marinas...Great! Samana was a sleepy quiet nice town, nothing more..very few cars...it was beautiful...we stayed with El Presidente Duartes great grandson up in the mountains eating fresh fruit and watching the Humpback whales breach in the bay....people were nice...
of course the world is so much different now...
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Old 18-02-2016, 08:22   #26
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

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Originally Posted by JTHAW View Post
to the op...going west around Haiti with intent of going to PR. Vi's etc. is out. forget it....go east along the DR coast..get Van Sants Gentlemans cruising guide...
I have been wanting to ask these same questions about DR..
I never went to Luperon back in the late '70's...from the Bahamas I went to Puerto Plata and then Samana...We had a wonderful time...no tourista stuff, no super marinas...Great! Samana was a sleepy quiet nice town, nothing more..very few cars...it was beautiful...we stayed with El Presidente Duartes great grandson up in the mountains eating fresh fruit and watching the Humpback whales Breach in the bay....people were nice...
Have never done either, but have read the Windward Passage a couple of times. What's the issue with the going west of Haiti? Is the leeward shore of the DR something to be concerned about as some have suggested? Frank V., author of "The Thinking Man's..." recommends avoiding it and prefers the WP as it is the quickest entry to the Caribbean.
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Old 18-02-2016, 09:24   #27
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

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Originally Posted by robgrant1 View Post
Have never done either, but have read the Windward Passage a couple of times. What's the issue with the going west of Haiti? Is the leeward shore of the DR something to be concerned about as some have suggested? Frank V., author of "The Thinking Man's..." recommends avoiding it and prefers the WP as it is the quickest entry to the Caribbean.
My post should have read "...but have read the Windward Passage recommended a couple of times."
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Old 18-02-2016, 11:21   #28
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

Here's Frank Virgintino's read on the subject. ‘Windward or Mona Passage?’ A Review and Assessment
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Old 18-02-2016, 12:56   #29
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

We went to Luperon many, many years ago on the advice of cruising guides and forums. When we got there, we wondered why anybody would recommend it. It's basically a stagnant bay inside a mangrove swamp, well protected in hurricanes but with little else to recommend it. From recent anecdotal information, Luperon continues to host an established community of cruisers, many of whom have been there for years, not unlike, say, George Town, Bahamas, Salinas, Puerto Rico or La Paz, Mexico.

Definitely consider the option of going south through the Windward Passage. Stop at Ile a Vache, Haiti, one of the most delightful, friendly and safe places you will ever visit. Then continue along the largely protected south coast of Hispaņola, with lots of good anchorages and at least one good marina (ZarPar). Compared to the north coast of the DR, this is an easy way go get east to the Eastern Caribbean islands.
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Old 18-02-2016, 13:31   #30
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Re: What's the deal with Luperon, DR?

I just left Luperon yesterday. You cannot compare it to Ocean World, one is a small fishing village with a well protected anchorage, the other is an expensive marina/tourist destination. If you are just passing through the DR on your way to/from the rest of the Caribbean islands choose whichever you prefer. Luperon is a small, poor, non-touristy fishing village with a 100% surge free anchorage. There are a number of permanently anchored live aboards but name one hurricane hole anchorage that doesn't. They are for the most part very helpful and make an attempt to contribute to the local economy and promote Luperon as a cruising destination. Clearing in to the DR in Luperon does require a bit of patience, and although some Spanish language skills would be helpful, there is now a full time tourism dept. employee named Rodney who will hold your hand, translate, and walk you through the clearing in process. There is a dinghy dock at the gov't pier. All of the officials are in the small block of offices at the foot of the pier, except the Navy Commandante's office which is just past the others and through the muddy lot and across the rickety foot bridge and up the hill (okay it is a third world country after all).
Rodney will spot the newbies a mile away and smooth the process...for free.

The process:
1. Fly your Q flag upon entry.
2. Anchor and wait a bit, most likely a chap named Papo will show up in a panga and welcome you. He will then offer to notify the Navy Commandante of your arrival. Otherwise hail "Commandancia de Luperon" on channel 68 and tell them you need to clear in.
3. Stay on your boat until visited by Commandante Torres (he's in charge for now but they rotate them out occasionally). Senor Torres is very friendly and speaks decent English. He will basically take a quick look, snap a photo of your boat documentation, and leave.
4. Dinghy into the the gov't dock, the dinghy dock is on the right side, half way down, it's a partially sunken floating pier extending out from the main dock (remember it's a poor country).
5. At the foot of the gov't pier is a cluster of portable offices, and outside under the shade tree you will meet Rodney. He will take you into the Customs, Immigration, Port Authority, and Agriculture Dept. offices. Be sure to bring copies of your registration and passports (remember this is a poor country, no Xerox machines here).
6. Each office requires a small fee in Dominican Pesos, but don't worry, Rodney will hold your hand and walk you up the street to the "Claro" office which has a currency exchange inside.
7. At each office remember to smile and say "Buenas Dias" and "Gracias"
8. When finished walk one block up the main road from the dock and stop in Wendy's bar and enjoy a cheap Presidente.

No Problema!

Just go in with the right attitude and it can be a fun cultural experience. Funny Story-

So yesterday I went to Clear out and obtain a Dispatcho as required. This involves no fees, just a quick stop in the immigration office for a stamp on the passport, a stop in the Port Authority office so they can confirm you paid the proper port fees for the length of time you actually stayed, then finally strip up the hill to see the Commandante to get the official "Dispatcho" form. I greet Commandante Torres with a "Buenas Dias" and tell him I would like to leave this morning and would like to get a Dispatcho. His response is "I just ran out of the Dispactcho forms and have to send one of my men into town to have more printed...but the one shop with the machine doesn't open until later." Then he asks me "Do you have a PC and printer on the boat?" "Why yes I do." I answer. A few rapid words in Spanish were exchanged with a navy underling and suddenly I am presented with a USB memory stick and asked to print them up a dozen or so copies of the Dispatcho form. So off to the dinghy dock and out to the floating government printing office I went. In the end I was only delayed maybe a half hour but I made some new friends in the Dominican Navy and established a bit of good will between the officials and the cruisers.

If all of that sounds like a "hassle" to you, then by all means go to Ocean World...and bring your extra heavy duty dock lines and Platinum Card

If heading East along the DR coast your next stop should be Samana, specifically Puerto Bahia Marina. This is a very nice hotel resort/Marina complex with 3 restaurants, and 2 infinity pools...for $1.00/FT!! The Dockmaster on the radio doesn't speak much English, so be prepared by having lines and fenders ready on both sides of the boat and follow his hand signals. Gavi runs the office and is very helpful and speaks excellent English. If you need detailed info on the way in, call on the phone and speak to Gavi in the dock masters office. The only down side of the place is that the fresh water at the dock is non-potable, so don't expect to fill your tanks from the tap. However they have 5 gallon drinking water bottles available at the small grocery on-site.

I could go on and on, but if you have questions-fire away while it's still fresh in my mind.


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