Situated in the country’s fertile central region, the town of Bonao offers the visitor exciting glimpses of local culture, excellent typical restaurants, and lively Dominican entertainment.
The town is one of the country’s most popular ecotourism destinations, because of its various ecosystems, lush mountains, and cool waterfalls and rivers.
The province is literally riddled with dozens of pristine rivers, streams, ponds and picture-perfect small waterfalls. All originate in the beautiful mountains of the country’s central mountain chain.
One of the region’s most important rivers, and one of the most visited, is the Masipedro. One of the river’s most important bathing sites is the “Camellon,” where both locals and international visitors gather to bathe in the cool waters that make their way from the nearby mountains.
Vendors have set up eateries on the river banks, the perfect spot to relax and take in the beautiful surroundings while at the same time enjoying cool beverages and typical Dominican dishes.
The Jima Waterfall
A few miles from the “Camellon” section is the Jima Waterfall, by far one of the region’s best kept secrets.
In total, nine small waterfalls come together to form this impressively beautiful destination, situated in the “Las Neblinas” Scientific Reserve.
The trail up to the waterfall begins at the Ministry of Tourism office in the “Charco Prieto” community.
The trail will lead visitors on a true adventure, only suitable for the adventuresome tourist. Although the trail may turn difficult at times, the stunning surroundings will more than make up for any inconveniences.
The Ministry of Tourism provides access up to the third – and even the fifth – waterfall. Visitors are accompanied by experienced tour guides who will have the right equipment, including harnesses and ropes, for the big climb. Access to the other waterfalls is reserved only for true athletes who will be able to cross the area safely.
The nearby Fula River is another option, with much easier access, near downtown Bonao. The river will provide excellent swimming for the entire family, in a safe and friendly environment.
Aside from its natural beauty, the centrally-located province also provides various cultural venues, as well as one of the country’s most colorful Carnival celebrations.
The town features the “Candido Bido” Museum, named after Bonao’s most important plastic artist.
The late painter founded the Museum and a fine arts school, providing art classes for the locals of all ages.
The Museum is also home to the most important collection of Bido’s works. The Museum is steps from Bonao’s Cultural Plaza, situated in the centrally located Mella Street.
Telephone: 809-525-5263. Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
The following hotels are recommended for those who want to spend a few days in the region:
The hotel is centrally located in Bonao near popular rivers, nightclubs, and restaurants, featuring comfortable rooms and a restaurant serving typical Dominican dishes.
Address: Duarte Street #151
Perfect is you are looking for more relaxed accommodations, with a beautiful views of nearby mountains. Very good service, situated outside Bonao.
Address: Duarte Highway, Kilometer #89
Address: Duarte Highway, Kilometer #82
Address: Francisco J. Peynado Street
This is not only one of the country’s most popular restaurants, but certainly the city of Bonao’s most iconic eatery. The restaurant is the place to go for excellent Dominican dishes.
Address: Duarte Highway, Kilometer #83 and Kilometer #85
Café Monte Carlo:
One of the town’s top restaurants, it offers a cozy and elegant atmosphere and specializes in Italian cuisine. You can enjoy the pleasant climate of Bonao by sitting in the restaurant’s outdoor terrace. Live jazz music on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Highly recommended on the menu: Eggplant Parmesan or the Café Montecarlo Grilled Skirt Steak, served with Mushroom Risotto. The restaurant is located on the outskirts of Bonao.
Address: Duarte Highway/Avenida Extension Libertad
“La Bomba” Express:
The perfect stop for a quick bite, serving sandwiches, fruit shakes, tacos, pizzas, burgers, etc.
Address: Esso Station, Duarte Street
An excellent alternative to enjoy both national and international dishes, in a relaxed atmosphere.
Address: Duarte Street, next to Hotel Aquarius
The perfect destination to enjoy excellent Dominican music. The nightclub features four areas, several dance floors and an outdoor bar.
Address: Duarte Avenue #1
Another great location for good music and excellent dancing, all in a cozy environment. Fridays are for urban music and Sundays for merengue and salsa. The Glow Room Bar opens at 3:00 p.m.
Address: 16 de Agosto Street
The hotel’s disco is one of the town’s most popular.
Address: Duarte Street #151
By: Anya Durán
Photos: Maximo Zorrilla