Santa Barbara de Samaná
The east coast of the Dominican Republic is very irregular with Samaná Bay extending west into the island for several miles. Bahia de Samaná is somewhat developed on its north coast and has a national park on south coast. The main city is Santa Barbara de Samaná, or usually referred to as just Samaná.
Again, we had the choice between anchoring at Samaná with reports of theft and shakedowns by officials, or pull into an upscale marine a couple of miles to the west. At $1.00 per foot, the Marina Puerto Bahia was a no brainer.
Check in with the officials was a snap with the marina handling most of the paperwork and providing office space for the officials.
On site, there are three restaurants, two complete with infinity pools, and a small grocery store.
Pollie moved right in.
Included with our marina fees was a one-way ride into Samaná. You were on your own for the trip back ($20 via taxi).
Like sharks smelling blood in the water, the vendors were all on high alert because a cruise ship was pulling in for a day stop.
Evidently when the cruise ships started stopping at Samaná, the city fathers thought it necessary to build this theme park shopping area to attract the tourists.
Unfortunately, the cruise lines now give the passengers a choice between Samaná and going to this island resort for the day. Fortunately for us, most of the passengers chose the resort.
We found the old architecture much more interesting than the theme park shopping area. Besides as Pollie pointed out, they were trying to sell, “the same old crap.”
Their money could have been better spent on other revitalization and beautification projects that the locals could use as well as the tourists.
“Bridge to nowhere”
Their anchorage looks very inviting; too bad it is getting a bad reputation with the cruisers.
Before returning to the resort, we had a great lunch at an open air, street side restaurant attached to this lady’s home.