Caribbean Odyssey

Caribbean Odyssey

Caribbean Odyssey

11 Days

Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic

San Juan (2), Jayuya (3), Ferry (1), San Pedro de Macoris (4)

Overview

Discover the vibrant cultures of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic on this 11-day journey. Start your adventure in San Juan, delving into the rich history and diverse traditions of Puerto Rico. Explore the cultural significance of Loiza, volunteer on a local farm to enhance food resilience, and experience the mountainous beauty of the central region. Next, take an overnight ferry to the Dominican Republic, where the historic charm of Santo Domingo and essential infrastructure projects in the bateyes await you. Engage with communities to improve living conditions and education, while also enjoying the stunning landscapes and pristine beaches. This unique program combines education, service, and cultural immersion, fostering meaningful connections and unforgettable experiences

Highlights

 

  • Volunteer with a local non-profit focused on disaster recovery, helping to rebuild homes and support communities.
  • Visit a coffee farm in the mountainous central region of Puerto Rico and learn about local agriculture and resilience.
  • Hike into El Yunque rainforest, visit a waterfall swimming hole, and kayak in Puerto Rico’s Bioluminescent Bay.
  • Relax on the pristine beaches and immerse yourself in the vibrant local culture through dance and music lessons.
  • Explore old San Juan and learn about Puerto Rico’s history and culture.

Itinerary

Welcome to the Island of Enchantment! Arrive into San Juan (SJU) where you’ll meet your tour director and get settled into your hotel. Enjoy an introduction to Puerto Rico, covering its history, culture, and complex relationship with the United States, and start exploring San Juan.
Overnight: San Juan

Spend the day exploring the diverse cultural influences of Puerto Rico. In the morning, head to Loiza to learn about this community’s cultural significance. Known as “La Capital de la Tradición,” Loiza is celebrated for its contributions to dance and music, as well as its embrace of traditional Taíno and African dishes, folk art, and culture. Participate in a Bomba lesson on the beach and discover the history of this rhythmic dance. After lunch, visit Old San Juan to experience its colonial charm, learn about the city’s history, and explore its plazas.
Overnight: San Juan

Over the next two days, volunteer with a local non-profit organization focused on disaster recovery. This NGO rebuilds homes and supports communities affected by natural disasters, aiming for efficient, timely, and sustainable recovery efforts. Volunteers play a crucial role in these efforts, helping to rebuild homes and support disaster-affected communities, fostering unity and collective action. Service will take place in the morning with cultural activities happening in the afternoon, such as salsa lessons or walking tours of communities.
Overnight: San Juan

Head out of San Juan and into the mountainous central region of Puerto Rico. This area, with its curving mountain passes and peaks, is fertile and capable of producing local staples. Visit a coffee farm and learn about the potential for Puerto Rico to increase its resilience by growing more of its food locally. Settle into your hotel in Adjuntas for the night for a change of scenery.
Overnight: Adjuntas

Begin the morning with a nature walk to learn about the flora and fauna of the area. Enjoy the fresh mountain air and the sounds of birds in the crisp morning atmosphere. After leaving the mountains, head back towards the coast, stopping in Guavate for lunch to savor the renowned lechón. Upon arriving at the hotel, head to the beach to relax on the white sands and swim in the turquoise waters.

Overnight: San Juan

Today’s adventure starts with a hike into El Yunque rainforest to visit a stunning waterfall swimming hole, where you can try out natural rock slides and enjoy the refreshing river. In the afternoon, head to the beach and take kayaks out into Puerto Rico’s famous Bioluminescent Bay. This mangrove-surrounded bay is one of the best places in the world to witness the glowing bioluminescent plankton.

Overnight: San Juan

After breakfast, bid farewell to this island paradise and head to the airport for your flight home. We hope you enjoyed your stay in Puerto Rico!

This Trip Includes

  • Round-trip airfare
  • All accommodations on program
  • All transportation in-country
  • All meals on the program
  • All activities as outlined in the itinerary
  • A Tour Director available 24 hours a day from when you arrive until you depart
  • Sightseeing tours and excursions led by local guides as specified
  • Airport transfers and transportation between destination cities
  • Travel insurance for all participants
  • 24-hour worldwide emergency assistance
  • Support from GEC representatives abroad