No matter how we describe our tours, there is no substitute for the experiences our guests can relate in their own words and pictures.
Enjoy the real-life tales as told by MotoCaribe Alumni raconteurs in forums and blogs scattered around the internet:
Dave’s & Kris’ North Coast Adventure
(Dave and wife Kris are leaders of the Salt Lake City group, CanyonChasers, some of the most accomplished sport-touring motorcyclists with whom we’ve had the pleasure of riding.)
I can honestly say that I never expected to ride motorcycles in the Caribbean, and I can honestly say that I never gave the small island nation of the Dominican Republic a second thought, I mean, doesn’t is share a border with Haiti?
But motorcycling is all about getting past our out biases, right. Haiti and the Dominican Republic share the island of Hispaniola, and while Haiti is best known to us Americans because of violent military rule in the early 1990’s and the subsequent intervention of more than 20,000 American troops, the Dominican Republic seems to have put most of its violent uprisings into its history books enjoying a stable and peaceful democracy since the ousting of their last lunatic dictator in 1961.
Beyond the political, the Dominican Republic sits between Puerto Rico and Cuba and should be best known for as the 1492 landing spot of Christopher Columbus. It is also host to the first permanent European settlement in the Americas, Santo Domingo.
With your geography and history up to speed, you can now meet the crew. We were hosted by MotoCaribe. A budding motorcycle adventure company located in the heart of the Dominican Republic. They offer one, five and seven day tours in several iterations. We would be enjoying a seven-day adventure exploring the northeastern portion of the island.
While Kris and I consider ourselves fairly experienced motorcycle travelers, we really had no idea what to expect out of riding motorcycles on a Caribbean Island. Fortunately the site had lots of information to help us pack appropriately, and Ed was always on the other end of the internet or the phone to answer any questions we might have had. So, with our passports in order, our helmets packed securely in their bags, we caught the red-eye from Salt Lake City and landed in the Dominican Republic 18 hours later, utterly exhausted and excited to have finally arrived.
Read Dave & Kris’ Full Caribbean Adventure Review
CanyonChasers Return to the Dominican Republic
(CanyonChasers invade the Dominican Republic, this time with the whole crew)
In 2009 when we first visited the Dominican Republic with MotoCaribe, we tried to get our fellow CanyonChasers to join us. Despite our pleadings none felt comfortable enough with the unknown to take the chance. Upon our return and the many stories we came home with managed changed everyone’s mind. So when we were offered a discounted group rate, within 15 minutes of being announced to the gang, all ten bikes spoken for.
We were all, pretty much, on the same flight from Salt Lake to New York and New York to Santiago. But getting fourteen people across the country a few days after Christmas proved to be no easy task, particularly when you are dealing with Delta Airlines and a massive blizzard that was pounding the northeast. Several hours before we were to set out, Warren chose the proactive route and we rushed to Salt Lake International to see if we could find alternate routes to the small island of Hispanola.
Because of our pro-activity and some luck, our route’s to the Dominican Republic ended up taking us all over the country before we all arrived together again in the Caribbean.
Read the Full CanyonChasers Invasion Photojournal Review
Thor Hiney’s North Coast Adventure
(Daryl M., aka “Thor Hiney,” is an adventure motorcyclist from the Pacific Northwest who participated in the very first MotoCaribe “Virgin Tour”)
I left PDX (that’s Portland Oregon for you non locals) on Saturday May 4th and flew down to Phoenix for a plane change. While in the Phoenix airport late in the evening I got hassled by TSA while wandering around stretching my legs.
While putting all my possessions back together I promptly lost my cell. #$@&%*!!! I discovered it was missing about 1 minute before boarding for New York.
I ran into Ewan there in Phoenix. He was looking for his next adventure also. He wasn’t that talkative and was more interested in selling perfume. If it smells like motorcycles, smoke, dirt, etc. I will buy some and maybe even drink it.
Read Thor Hiney’s Full Adventure
Thor Hiney and Hobo Do the SouthWest
(Daryl M. returns to the DR, this time to ride MotoCaribe on our first SouthWest tour.)
First a little background: I did a trip in May of 08 on the North East side of the island and already had an idea of how much fun a trip like this could be. Tour guide Ed and co-owner of MotoCaribe planted the seed when I was there that he planned to do a tour to the other side of the island in the future.
Before Christmas he let me know that a ‘Virgin Tour’ was in the works and I should think about coming down there again. So I got permission from the Mrs. and from my employer and I was on my way.
This report is about a 7 day group tour of the South West side of the Dominican Republic and Haitian border.
I am just one of their happy customers that wants to share my experience with fellow V-Strom/adventure enthusiasts.
Second a little about me: I am the kind of rider who likes to soak up the surroundings and see and meet the locals. I am not one of those mileage monsters who ride 500+ miles a day. For me the ride becomes work and the only thing I remember from the ride is that white line going by and how tired/sore I am. I also bought a new camera to capture some of the scenery I knew I would be coming across. I kept the small camera in my jacket pocket for snap shots and the big Nikon D80 in a soft case in my huge tank bag.
Third a little about my riding buddy: A hobo I know that has been in semi-retirement for a while and when I mentioned that I was going he sounded a little put out so I told him if he had any money he should not miss this. So it was me and (Mark) Berserker1 again. I put him on notice that he was not going to be angry and there would be no whining, and if he wasn’t careful he was gonna have a blast. Come to find out his woman told him the same thing.
Read Daryl & Hobo’s Full SouthWest Photo Journey
Philip & Nanyee’s North Coast Adventure
(Philip, an excellent photographer, captured the essence of a MotoCaribe tour on camera.)
The pillion and I had a great time on this tour, so we want share some photos and comments about the tour. It was an awesome adventure exploring new lands and a new culture in only the way you can do on a motorcycle.
We highly recommend it and are already plotting a way to get back again next year.
See Philip’s Excellent MotoCaribe Tour Photography
Jodi & Charles Epic MotoCaribe Tour on TripAdvisor
(Ohioans Jodi & Charles take a week away from the kids for their Second Honeymoon)
Fantastic! That sums it up, but I’ll give details.
Before going on our tour of the north coast with Motocaribe, I’d looked for reviews on here and hadn’t found any, so I guess I’m the first. This is a tour, on motorcycles, of the moutainous area (centered in Jarabacoa) and also the Samana Peninsula. The Motocaribe website (www.motocaribe.com) has tons of details and other trip reports with tons of pictures about what you do each day. Excellent reviews! My main question before going on this trip was if it was too good to be true. The website write-ups and pictures looked phenomenal, and the price for a motorcycle tour was less than all the others we were looking at. The answer to my question is, it WAS too good, but it was ALSO TRUE!
Jodi’s Full MotoCaribe Review
Ken S. Does the North Coast
(Ken S., a retired Ship’s Engineer from the Pacific Northwest, tells of his Dominican Motorcycling adventure)
Last week four Stromtroopers and their spouses went on a great riding tour of the central mountains and the north coast of the Dominican Republic with Robert Cooper and his wife, Alida (AL-eeda), of Motocaribe. We totaled about 600 miles of riding mainly two lane country roads with some congested city riding and small town & village riding. The mountain roads are great riding with 1st & 2nd gear curves, but often with obstructed sight lines, so no peg scraping. You never know when a truck is broken down in your lane around that curve, or a goat in the road, or anything unexpected at all. The coastal roads have great views, as do many of the mountain roads. If I rode fast here, it cuts down the sight seeing, and I can ride fast at home. One couple each rode a strom, two couples rode as rider/pillion, and my wife rode in the van with Alida. (My wife who never before showed any interest in being on two motorized wheels now thinks she should learn to ride pillion and we go back in two years! I’m thinking that she should take a scooter riding course to learn the dynamics, then we practice riding double before we head south. Maybe she’ll even want her own scooter….)
Read Ken’s Full Adventure
Jim T.’s Epic MotoCaribe Adventure
(Jim T. and wife Michelle from the Pacific Northwest blast the North Coast of the DR)
We just arrived home yesterday. Robert asked if we had one word to describe this trip what would it be? We sat for awhile in a silent van as all of us tried to find the word that would sum it up. After having more time to think about it I have found the word that works for me.
If you are on the fence about doing a tour then get off of it and go. This is not for the meek weekend rider. You will need to be comfortable with riding a bike for extended periods and never knowing what may be around the next corner. (There are very few straight roads in the DR.) It can be anything from a moto, to an overloaded truck, to a stray animal, to the road turning to dirt, a missing manhole cover, and list can go on and on.
Life in the DR happens on the road. When you pass homes it is not uncommon to see the entire family and their pets sitting in front of the house with their feet on the road. With stands pedaling anything you may want or never knew you needed you have to be prepared that a vehicle in front of you will stop in the road to make a deal with the proprietor. In the USA you would have a melt down if this happened but in the DR you just give a couple toots of the horn and go around.
Jim T’s Full MotoCaribe Review
Scott W. Rides the Dominican Republic
(A hard working software engineer, Scott W.’s time off made for an adventure for the ages, a very detailed report.)
I’m not used to riding in large groups, and am generally not a fan of even group rides with more than 2 or 3 people in them, and sort of really like to ‘pick my own destination, on the fly,’ so to speak, even though some of the choices may be preceded by a whole lot of research on my behalf in some cases. Planned or group trips also seem to be less introspective, and just, well, different.
While I expect to do many more solo trips in the future, though, this was really a good trip. I know there was no way that I could have come up with the collection of places, routes and sights that MotoCaribe did, let alone lodging, and it was sort of nice to be able to travel without tools and emergency gear with me for a change.
Would I do it again? Yeah, most definitely. MotoCaribe is apparently in the planning stages of offering a ‘desert tour,’ covering the other parts of DR in the future, and that seems like a likely candidate, assuming I can get off work. Very few to no regrets on this trip, and would ride with them again any time!
Read Scott’s Full MotoCaribe Adventure
Dragan B.’s Amazing MotoCaribe Van Tour
(Dragan B. comes along on a MotoCaribe tour in the 15-passenger van, and has the time of his life!)
I was browsing the net for tours that would take me to several different destinations so I could explore as much as possible. I couldn’t really find much info on tours that would take me around the island. I have been following DR1 for almost a year now and I came across a company called MotoCaribe. MotoCaribe was the only company that was providing tours through the island and that’s exactly what I was looking for. I went to their website www.MotoCaribe.com and started reading some of the reviews. I am not a biker but I had a sports bike a few years ago and decided to contact Robert Cooper from MotoCaribe to get further information about the Tours. Once I contacted him, I found out that I didn’t meet the requirements such as taking the Motorcycle Safety Course. Robert mentioned to me that MotoCaribe provides Van Tours as well. I didn’t waste much time and told him to sign me up for the next tour ASAP. Robert told me that there was a Tour on 11/13/11. Immediately I sent Robert the payment and one week later I was on my way to the DR. On 11/11/11 I landed in Santo Domingo. I spend the first 2 days of my trip at the Capitol and on Sunday morning I made my way to Jarabacoa where MotoCaribe is located. We arrived at a hotel called Gran Jimenoa. The place was absolutely amazing.
I must admit that these were the best 5 days of my life. I made some great freinds and saw one of the most beautiful places on the planet. I would have never imagined that the tour would be this AMAZING.
I would like to thank MotoCaribe and everyone that was on the tour with me for the most incredible time.
Dragan’s Full Trip Report