FAQ for Surfing Dominican Republic

When is the best season for Surfing in the Dominican Republic?
There surf 350 days of the year, biggest ( between head high and double overhead) is mostly found between September and April. Smaller waves ( waist to head high) is common between May and August

Where are the best surf spots?
See the surf spot page

What kind of surfboard should I bring to the Dominican republic?
Standard short or longboards will do fine.

Where can I rent surfboards?
There’s a couple of places at Playa Encuentro that rent out good surfboards: Bobo’s surf school, Chino’s surf school and Puahana. For Surf Camp clients Swell offers a good surfboard selection in their rental pool.

What is the air and water temperature like?
Somewhere between 77F-80F ( 24C-28C) air and water temperatures year round, leave your wet suits at home, but bring plenty of sunscreen!

Are there any dangers for surfing in the DR?
Some spots have coral reefs. Ask the local surfers what to look out for, there’s some very safe spots for surfers of all levels, and some are only to be surfed by experienced surfers.

Do I need reef booties for surfing on the North coast of the DR?
Not really, unless you are a beginning surfer and still walking out the the lineup instead of paddling. The reef at Encuentro is pretty mellow but you might get some scratches if you walk over the reef for a while.

What else is there to do besides surfing?
Kitesurfing, stand up paddle surfing, windsurfing, Canyoning, party, good food, snorkeling, diving

Do I need to rent a car in the DR for surf trips?
If you are around Cabarete area, everything is close, within a few miles radius, there’s local motor and car taxi’s and if you stay in Cabarete town you can walk everywhere, so no need to rent a car.

Are there any surf shops in the DR?
There are a few decent surf shops in Cabarete: Surfea and Bic Carib surf shop, they have good stuff, some surfboards as well, but they are 10-20% more expensive than surf shops in the USA, since everything has to be imported.

What about Ding repairs?
Around Playa Encuentro there are a few locals that can do good surfboard repairs for reasonable prices.

Is there localism in the DR?
The vibes is very mellow and welcoming, however, be nice and you get treated nice. If you are going to drop in, be an ass, create bad vibes, you’ll get the same in return.

What is the most consistent surf spots on the North Coast?
Playa Encuentro has waves for surfers of all levels and a surf able wave 350 days per year.

Where should I stay when i go on a surf trip to the DR?
See our accommodations page

What level of surfers are the Dominicans?
Level has been rising quickly over the last years.

Where can i find info on Surfing DR?
See the surf spot maps here

Do I need a visa to enter the Dominican Republic?
For most countries no special visa is required a tourist card is sold on arrival for 20USD. 

Do I need to worry about Hurricanes and Tropical storms?
99% of all hurricanes in the Caribbean tend to track either well north of well south of the island. If they track well north it usually means good surf is on the way in the overhead range. In 2017 when hurricane after hurricane was going over the Caribbean, Cabarete had no damage! 

What are the good wave forecasting site for the DR?
Windguru does a good job forecast waves and wind. So does Magicseaweed
What tides are best for surfing at Playa Encuentro?
Tidal changes are small, so has very little effect on the waves at Playa Encuentro


for preparing

  1. Plan Ahead: Research and plan your itinerary in advance to make the most of your time in the Dominican Republic. Identify the places you want to visit, activities you want to engage in, and the best time to visit each destination. This will help you optimize your travel experience and ensure you don’t miss out on any must-see attractions.

  2. Pack Accordingly: Pack lightweight and breathable clothing suitable for the tropical climate. Don’t forget essentials like swimwear, sunscreen, insect repellent, a hat, and sunglasses. If you plan to explore natural sites or hike, pack sturdy shoes and outdoor gear. Additionally, bring any necessary medications and a first-aid kit.

  3. Learn Basic Spanish: While many Dominicans working in tourism areas speak English, it is still beneficial to learn some basic Spanish phrases. Locals will appreciate your efforts, and it will help you navigate everyday situations more easily, especially in non-touristy areas.

  4. Stay Hydrated: The Dominican Republic’s tropical climate can be hot and humid. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Carry a refillable water bottle and refill it as needed. Avoid drinking tap water and opt for bottled water or water from filtered sources.

  5. Embrace Local Cuisine: Try the local Dominican cuisine for an authentic culinary experience. Sample traditional dishes like mangu (mashed plantains), sancocho (meat and vegetable stew), and tostones (fried plantains). Don’t miss out on fresh seafood, tropical fruits, and refreshing beverages like piña coladas and mamajuana (a traditional Dominican drink).

  6. Exercise Caution with Tap Water and Street Food: While Dominican cuisine is delicious, exercise caution when consuming tap water and street food to avoid stomach issues. Stick to bottled water and choose street food vendors with clean and hygienic food preparation practices.

  7. Stay Safe: Like any travel destination, it’s important to take safety precautions. Avoid displaying expensive items and be mindful of your belongings, particularly in crowded places. Use hotel safes for valuables and carry only necessary items when exploring. If you’re renting a car, park in well-lit and secure areas.

  8. Use Reliable Transportation: Use trusted transportation options, such as registered taxis, ride-hailing apps, or private transfers, especially when traveling at night or in unfamiliar areas. Ensure that the vehicles are licensed, metered, or have a negotiated fare before getting in.

  9. Explore Beyond Resorts: While the Dominican Republic is known for its beautiful all-inclusive resorts, consider exploring beyond the resort areas. Venture into local towns and cities to experience the authentic culture and interact with the friendly locals. Visit local markets, explore historical sites, and immerse yourself in the vibrant Dominican lifestyle.

  10. Be Mindful of Your Surroundings: The Dominican Republic is a relatively safe destination, but it’s important to be aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded areas and tourist hotspots. Stay alert to avoid any potential scams or petty theft.

  11. Respect Local Customs and Traditions: Respect the local customs and traditions of the Dominican Republic. Dress modestly when visiting religious sites, and always ask for permission before taking photos of locals. Learn about the cultural norms and practices to ensure you are respectful in your interactions.

  12. Stay Informed about Weather: Stay informed about the weather conditions during your stay. The Dominican Republic can experience hurricanes and tropical storms between June and November. Monitor weather forecasts and follow the instructions of local authorities in case of severe weather.

  13. Explore Natural Beauty: The Dominican Republic is known for its stunning natural beauty. Explore the country’s national parks, waterfalls, and pristine beaches. 



To visit the Dominican Republic as a tourist, most nationalities do not require a visa for stays of up to 30 or 90 days, depending on the country of origin. This policy applies to visitors from the United States, Canada, the European Union, and many South American countries, among others. However, it’s essential to check the specific visa regulations for your nationality, as they can vary.

Visa-free entry allows tourists to engage in activities such as leisure, sightseeing, and enjoying the country’s attractions. It’s important to note that this visa exemption is strictly for tourism purposes, and engaging in any form of employment or business activities is not allowed without the appropriate work or business visa.

Upon arrival, you will receive a Tourist Card, which is a mandatory document for entry. The Tourist Card is usually included in the cost of your airline ticket or purchased upon arrival at the airport. The card is valid for up to 30 days and can be extended for an additional fee at immigration offices within the country if needed.

To ensure a smooth entry process, ensure that you have the following documentation:

  1. A valid passport: Ensure that your passport has at least six months of validity beyond your intended departure date.

  2. Return or onward ticket: Immigration authorities may request proof of a return or onward ticket to verify your intention to leave the country within the allowed period.

  3. Accommodation information: Have the details of your hotel or accommodation readily available, as immigration officers may ask for this information.

  4. Sufficient funds: Be prepared to show proof of sufficient funds to cover your expenses during your stay in the Dominican Republic. This can be in the form of cash, credit cards, or a bank statement.

It’s important to note that visa requirements and regulations can change, so it’s advisable to check with the nearest Dominican Republic embassy or consulate or consult official government websites for the most up-to-date and accurate information specific to your nationality.

By adhering to the visa requirements and ensuring you have the necessary documentation, you can enjoy a hassle-free entry into the Dominican Republic and fully immerse yourself in the country’s vibrant culture, beautiful beaches, and diverse attractions.