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Discover Samaná

Getting our Sea Legs


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & Grandeur of the Seas and Pearl & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Saturday, December 15th - a Sea Day

Crystal Atrium

Crystal Atrium


We got up too late to get breakfast in any of the dining rooms, so we had it in the buffet. We went to trivia,
Bar where we had trivia

Bar where we had trivia


and there were so few of us that we had to have just us on our team. We had lunch in the dining room and I had a
Tropical fruit compote

Tropical fruit compote


kind of thing and Bob had
Chicken and tuna salad combo

Chicken and tuna salad combo


as an appetizer, and then we both had cold
Pineapple and vanilla bean soup

Pineapple and vanilla bean soup


Meatloaf

Meatloaf

Bread pudding

Bread pudding

We went to the lecture
Theatre entrance

Theatre entrance


on Writers of the Caribbean
Theatre.jpgTheatre lecturer

Theatre lecturer


and then we couldn't decide whether we needed to get dressed up for lobster night or not. The plan of the day wasn't clear. Also the Fun Trivia was at 4:45 about the same time as the second lecture (4:30) and we knew this trivia would be on food so we wanted to do that. So I compromised and wore a dress but not one that I would call formal and we went to trivia and then I stayed in the bar
Whiskey Bar where we had trivia

Whiskey Bar where we had trivia


and waited for Bob to go down and change and meet me for dinner.
Corridor to room - the fish on the carpet swim toward the bow

Corridor to room - the fish on the carpet swim toward the bow

Restaurant status window

Restaurant status window


We went back to the Indigo again and this time were at a larger table with people that we were more able to interact with.
Indigo dining room

Indigo dining room


We had the
Seafood cocktail

Seafood cocktail


which had one big shrimp on the top and scallops and other little shrimp in it. The pumpkin and ginger bisque was supposed to have lump crab meat in it, but none of us found any.

The main dish
Seafood Extravaganza

Seafood Extravaganza


had two spears of asparagus, some scallops, a couple of mussels, one lobster tail, a shrimp and a piece of fish with noodles. I missed having butter to dip some of the stuff in. For dessert, I had
Honey creme brulee

Honey creme brulee


which had a bottom layer of what tasted like chocolate pudding.
Before stage show

Before stage show


After dinner, we went to the show which was called Sea Legs which was kind of a Vegas type review.
Sea Legs

Sea Legs


There were some chorus girls, a ballet pair, and a girl and a man who performed on a rope hanging over the stage, and a male and female singer There didn't appear to be any live musicians there.

The initial announcement was not to videotape or photograph using a flash and I figured if I didn't use a flash it would be OK. After this show, however, they just said "No photography"
Casino

Casino


Pool deck at night

Pool deck at night


Adult pool at night

Adult pool at night


December 16- Sunday

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Today we were in Samaná which is a providence on a peninsula of the Dominican Republic and is also the name of a town. According to one website, Samaná translates to “fish with coconut sauce.” This is the destination for any traveler trying to capture the experience of a raw and less developed area of the Caribbean.

One of the attractions if you visit in between mid-January and mid-March, is the spectacle of thousands of humpback whales that migrate here every year. There is a small but interesting whale museum to visit if you are not here during those months.

We are anchored and have to tender in. So it was good that I had booked a tour, because tour gets priority in tendering. We were supposed to meet in the theatre (forward of our room) at 9:45. They were using our lifeboats to tender.
Lifeboat davits

Lifeboat davits


Our tour was called Discover Samaná ,
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and was to be at 1000 for 3.5 hours. By the time we got to the dock it was about 1040. I think the port made a bad impression on a lot of people because the water and beach area there was full of trash. People from the DR may not to mind having trash all over. But probably it is just because there is no trash cans to put it in and no trash pick-up.

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We got on our bus and it started off

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and immediately we made the first turn, the engine died. It took a few minutes to get started again. The tour took us past La Churcha

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which had been brought from somewhere else and reassumbled here. Apparently this area originally had quite a few English speaking people in it, but Trujillo made it illegal to teach children any language but Spanish.

Since it was Sunday, most of the shops were closed. We drove to a place which was apparently called Colonia Rancho Espanol
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where we had a rest stop and opportunity to drink a local drink and buy stuff (mostly Hatian I think although it said Arte Dominicano).
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I went down to a little church and cemetery and took some photos there.
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From the bus we saw the houses of the people - in one case they were using a wall to dry clothes on
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We passed a car wash (which apparently doubles as a casino and bar),
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a fancy hotel, a baseball (or softball) game, and drove by a long beach to the little village of Las Terrenas which has a small airport.
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Las Terrenas is reached by two main roads: one from Sanchez at the western end of the peninsula and the other from the city of Samana by way of the village of El Limon and the resort at El Portillo. Both roads follow a winding route over the mountains and through the lush valleys across the peninsula and provide a scenic and sometimes spectacular view of the rich, mountainous terrain with its simple, country life. .This has been described as a small fishing village.

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What we saw from the bus was lots of pristine beaches. The miles of undeveloped white-sandy beaches and protected inshore waters have contributed to the growth of this formerly small village.

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Hispaniola was described by Christopher Columbus as "the most beautiful land in the world," and today those words could apply to the Samana Peninsula. "Time Magazine" has described the area as having one of the last, long stretches of undeveloped beach in the Caribbean.

According to the Samana webpage, The balmy climate with it's ever-present trade winds and the warm temperature of the sub-tropical Atlantic Ocean combine to provide this part of the island with year-round, delightful weather with only a few degrees difference in temperature between winter and summer. Annual rainfall is moderate with no perceptible "rainy season" usually found in other tropical locations.

Then we turned around and went back to Samaná. Here we stopped at the whale museum and the guide gave us a tour.
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Guide behind the bones of a whale's head.

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We (Bob and I) used the bathroom, which was one of those that you put the TP in the wastebasket and not in the toilet.

Then he dropped people who wanted to shop at the area where the shops were open for us, and took the rest of us back to the dock. We walked aboard the tender about 1410 - after having our hands sanitized, and showing our ship card. The boat was crowded, and was a round bottom which was pounding through the seas, even as calm as the water was.
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After we went through the Xray procedure, and dropped our stuff at the room, we went to the buffet because by then it was 1445 and the restaurant was closed. I got some pumpkin cubes and some sauteed zucchini and a tiny tuna sandwich on a little hard roll. Then I got ice cream - or actually pineapple sherbert. Bob got a hamburger.
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Bathroom door in public bathroom (in use)

Bathroom door in public bathroom (in use)


For dinner we went to the Summer Palace (which is styled after the Russian Tsar's Summer Palace), and were seated by the window with another couple where we could watch the sunset.

I had something called Fresh Fruit Minestrone which was a kind of fruit cocktail thing and not soup.
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As an entree, Bob had the catfish
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And I had
Spinach and veal cannelloni

Spinach and veal cannelloni


I had the warm pinapple crepes with coconut ice cream for dessert
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and Bob had the flourless chocolate cake. He went to the magic show after dinner, and I took the computer to the atrium to watch the football game.
Crystal Atrium football on the big screen

Crystal Atrium football on the big screen

Posted by greatgrandmaR 19:29 Archived in Dominican Republic Tagged whales museum dominican_republic

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Comments

The palm tree lined beaches look absolutely stunning.

by irenevt

Yes the beaches are the attraction for a lot of people. And it is fairly cheap to stay in the DR. In 2006 we had a week at a condo in Santo Domingo https://drgreatgrandmar.travellerspoint.com/1/

The infrastructure is poor - roads may not be in good shape and in cities, traffic signals are non-operational or are regarded as optional.

by greatgrandmaR

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