There is so much more to the Dominican Republic than sun and beaches. Learn about the island’s fascinating culture and heritage through its most popular exports on a unique and lively shopping tour of Higuey. Visit hidden factories, workshops, markets and shops with a local guide who will help you to buy the best souvenirs ever! Along the way we’ll stop to admire some of the city’s most impressive architecture, learn more about the lifestyle of a typical Dominican and enjoy a traditional lunch at the home of a local family. Did we mention that we’ve negotiated factory prices for you? This is definitely the best way to shop for original handicrafts and souvenirs in Higuey and get a proper introduction to the island, too!
After a short ride in a comfortable, private vehicle from Punta Cana to Higuey, your tour will begin with an introduction to the history and culture of the island, outside the impressive Basilica de Higuey Cathedral. The cathedral is home to the La Altagracia Virgin, and we’ll stop to admire the modern architecture and hear the old colonial legend about how the celebrated painting of the Virgin first appeared. There will also be an opportunity to look at and purchase religious-themed art and gifts before we move on to take a look around San Dionicio’s Sanctuary.
After a short stroll to get to know the neighbourhood, we’ll arrive at a traditional saddlery to see how the famous Higueyan horse saddle is made. You’ll watch local artisans painstakingly stitching the leather together as you find out what makes these particular saddles so special.
Then we’ll lead you to a handmade cigar factory, where you will see how Dominican cigars are produced and find out why they are considered some of the best in the world. You can try one if you wish and buy cigars at a special factory price.
Next up, we are going to delight you with a visit to one of our favourite galleries to peruse the colourful artworks on offer. Watch the talented artists at work in the workshop and discover African, Haitian and Aboriginal-inspired works of art. We’ll give you plenty of time to browse and shop for a piece to take home with you.
A further walk through the buzzing streets of the city will take us to a very special artisanal shop that boasts an excellent selection of wooden handicrafts and musical instruments, as well as fine jewellery. Find out more about the Dominican Republic’s precious stones, such as amber and larimar, the latter of which is particularly special as it can only be found here on the island.
Our next stop will be the vibrant fruit and vegetable market, which boasts an extraordinary variety of food and flavours to taste. Your guide will talk to you about the most popular spices used on the island before taking you to visit another market known for its traditional medicines and potions.
Our walk will then take us to the home of a local family home where you will try some traditional Dominican food and get refreshed with an ice cold beer.
After lunch, we’ll make one last stop to pick up dessert at a local bakery famous for their sweet delicacies, including delicious rice and milk treats and coconut and banana bread.
Our shopping tour ends here. Don’t forget to ask your guide for tips on which restaurants to visit and secret local spots to call into. We are also very happy to help you find the best way back to your accommodation.
Dress standard: We recommend that you wear comfortable shoes for walking, and sunscreen and sunglasses are usually advisable. Women must wear pants or skirts below knees to visit the Basilica
Child Policy: This is a child-friendly tour. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 inclusively are permitted on this tour at the rate listed above. Please select ‘child’ above when booking. Children under the age of 6 are permitted to join this tour free of charge. Please inform us at the time of booking if you’ll be bringing a child under the age of 6. You can do so in the special request box on the checkout page.
Dietary Notes: We can accommodate vegetarians and other dietary restrictions. Please notify us in advance if you have any dietary requests. You can do so in the ‘Additional information’ box at checkout, or by emailing us at email@example.com
Note that the food samples may vary from tour to tour depending on what is available that day
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Great tour with José. I highly recommend José. He does a terrific job and is very knowledgeable. We will book him for our next visit.
Great staff who clearly enjoy their work We were part of a large group tour (a couple hundred people organized into smaller, but still fairly large groups... read moreWe were part of a large group tour (a couple hundred people organized into smaller, but still fairly large groups of 40 or so people) that included a walking tour through the oldest parts of Santo Domingo with stops at historic sites along the way, plus a visits to a chocolate museum (which was great), a 4D cinema (which was a bit cheesy), and a slightly-too-long stop at a tourist shop, culminating in a truly lovely lunch buffet in an old colonial hotel, with a rum tasting and visits from Carnival "diablos". Despite that, with such a large group, it could be hard to hear the explanations of the various historical stops, our guide was really warm and friendly, and happy to chat or answer questions, as was the young woman who helped shepherd our group. In all, it was a delightful few hours' easy walking tour. read less
Day trip to Santo Domingo Had a wonderful day with Jose touring Santo Domingo. We stayed in Bavaro Beach and Jose was going to have... read moreHad a wonderful day with Jose touring Santo Domingo. We stayed in Bavaro Beach and Jose was going to have a local driver bring us to SD and back but that guy bailed on him. Instead of cancelling our day, Jose drove the 2.5 hours from his home in SD to pick us up, drive us back to SD, tour us around and then bring us back to Bavaro - GREAT DEDICATION! He took us to the Tres Ojos first which was just beautiful. We had the place to ourselves. We then took a driving tour of Santo Domingo, making quick stops in front of the Presidential palace and a to a local hole in the wall bakery where we purchased AMAZING local treats that sustained us until lunch (some kind of super moist coconut cake was out of this world good)! We took a short walking tour as well and got back to the car just when the skies opened up to pour - excellent timing (and knowledge on Jose's part, he knew it was about to rain). Jose was very knowledgeable and his English is excellent. We had brought books to read on the ride to and from but spent the time chatting with Jose instead. I only wish we could have had more time to explore and go into the many museums and churches we saw from the car but due to the distance from Bavaro, that was just not possible. I would highly recommend Jose! read less
Mon – Sat 8.00 – 18.00