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Dear Diary:

30th December 2005  -  The Dominican Republic

The original plan for this trip only took me to main land South and Central America, but while in South America I discovered that I could substitute a couple of short commuter flights within the State I had booked with a return journey out Memorial Entranceof Miami to just about to any Caribbean Island! Kool! I chose the Dominican Republic.

In the end I only ended up spending 4 days in Santo Domingo Main Square with Chris Colon pointing Northas the place is not to well set up for the independent traveller and I was keen to hit main land Central America.

There is lots to see and do in Santo Domingo with out a doubt. Take the Amber museum for example. The Dominican Amber BugRepublic seam to have some of the best deposits of the stuff in the world and I learnt more about Amber from the displays that I ever will need to know. I managed to escape Alcazar De Colonthe place with out purchasing anything but a few post cards thank goodness.

Just wandering the streets with a map from the tourist dudes ticking this off was the best plan. You can enter a number of places like the Alcazar De Colon where the history of the old town is on display and gives you a good idea of where this place has come from.

Fortaleaz OzamaThe biggest thing to visit in the old town area is Fortaleaz Ozama. I got my very own guide and wandered around the place for a good hour. Again you get a very good feel of what it perhaps was like hundreds of years ago as the place has been kept up quite well.

Any way, I cant help but feel its a place best investigated on a package tour with most things booked. The beaches look amazing - In the photos!Smile - You never know who's watching!

All that said and done, the last thing I'll share with you is my early morning departure.

The Taxi Dude with a big gun!  I tipped good!!This is a photo of the Taxi driver who picked me up at 5:30am from my hotel. Unfortunately the photo does not quite get include the massive pistol he had shoved in his shots and then under the steering column! Given my hotel's armed guard and receptionist seamed ok with him, I did not worry to much!Smile - You never know who's watching!

About the only other thing worth mentioning is the flight Oh to be on a driect flight!path I took from the Dominican Republic to Panama. As you can see from the monitor, there are direct flights that take a few hours. With my ticket it was a case of heading to Miami first to suffer some grumpy rude US Customs official and then on to Panama. DOH! Its a mad mad world!

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