Wingfoiling (also called wingsurfing or winging) is an exciting new watersport that is quickly gaining traction among water sports enthusiasts. It is a combination of surfing, kiteboarding, and windsurfing, with the addition of a large inflatable wing.

Unlike other watersports, Wingfoiling does not require the rider’s board to be in constant contact with the water’s surface while using their body weight to control the speed and direction of the board. This makes it an exciting and unique way to explore the ocean or any body of water.

With its fast learning curve and accessibility, Wingfoiling has become a popular alternative for those looking for an adrenaline rush or just something different from traditional watersports. Many people coming into the sport of wingfoiling come from a background of kitesurfing, windsurfing or surfing. The feeling of riding on a foil can be best be described as hovering over the water on a magic carpet.

learn wingfoiling


Wingfoiling is an exciting new sport that requires the right gear and preparation to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Here we break down the gear that is needed to get you into Wingfoiling


This is the part you hold in your hand.

wing wingsurfing

When it comes to wings, it’s important to understand exactly how they work and how much power they need in order to get up on the foil. Generally speaking, if you’re a beginner, you’ll want to start with a bigger wing in lighter winds. For someone up to 70kg or 155lbs, go for a 4m version and if you’re heavier than that, opt for the 5m variant. Other factors to consider when choosing a wing include its handles (soft vs hard) and leash attachment (on your wrist or waist). The best way to decide is by demoing different wings so that you can find the right setup for you!

The Wing is inflatable and has an inner tube. Inflating the wing is done quickly with a kite pump via 1 valve. Defalting and packing up the wing takes 2 minutes and they roll up into the size of a normal backpack, which makes them easy to travel with. To prevent you from losing your wing when you fall, the wing is attached to your wrist with a leash. Manufacturers make different size wings varying in sizes from 3 m2(square meter surface area) to 8 m2. The wings have a good variety of wind ranges so 1 wing size will do for most people. Popular brands are Naish, Cabrinha, Fone and Neil Pryde and all have their background in either windsurfing or kitesurfing.

Prices of wings start at 600USD to 1000USD new.


wingfoil board

When you are learning the sport of Wingsurfing you will want a board with plenty of volume (measured in liters) to give you heaps of stability. So when you are learning wingsurfing you’ll be on a board with 120 to 140 liters of volume, the board will be wide and thick

Some wingschools give their first lessons on Stand up Paddle boards with a regular surf fin, without a foil under neath.

Most boards have large EVA deckpads to give your feet grip and might have inserts to attach footstraps. Footstraps are generally not used for beginners.

Advacnced Wingsurfers can use a smaller board with less volume (Between 35 and 65 Liters)

The board will be attached to you with a leash that goes to either your feet or your waist.

Prices of wingfoil boards start at 500USD to 1500USD new.


surf foil

This is where the magic happens!

Basically a surf foil is the water version of the wings of an airplane, with an airplane the fast air that hits the front wing gives it upward lift. the smaller rear wing balances that lift downward so it becomes stable. With surf foils exactly the same principle applies. The front and back wing start engaging in lift when water hits the wings at a certain speed

Terminology of the different parts of the foil

Mast: Usually around 70 cm in lenght

Fuselage: Connects the mast with the front and rear wing

Front wing: Provides the upward lift

Rear wing (also called stabiliser): Stablises the wing and is a lot smaller than the front wing

Materials used in the foils: there are 2 different materials used in the construction of a foil for surf or wingfoiling: carbaon and aluminium. carbon is the more epxensive of the 2, because it requirers less maintenance ( no oxidation) and is stiffer at a lower weight. Aluminium is more budget friendly but because they are less stiff, means lower responsiveness. Some companies make a combination of the 2 materials: an Aluminium mast and Carbon wings and fuselage.

Popular brands are: Naish, Armstrong and Axis Foils

Prices alu foils: between $800 and $1500 USD New

Prices full carbon foils: between $1800 and $2500 USD New

Prices alu / carbon foils: between $1200 and $2200 USD New


Wingfoiling is a safe sport, ones of the reasons wingfoiling is so accesible to people of different ages and abilities is to instantly ‘depower’ the wing. Meaning you let go of the wing and the power is immediatly reduced to zer, reducing the chance of injury. With kitesurfing you are more attached to the kite and if something goes wrong a safety mechanism has to be activated to release the power.

The part that is the most harmfull in wingfoiling, or any kind of foiling is, you guessed it, the foil. Knocking any body parts against the sometimes sharp-ish edges can result in a bruise or a scratch.

that is why people wear a helmet and an impact / flotation vest when learning to wingfoil, and even advanced and expert riders wear these.


One of the reasons wingsurfing is now one of the fastest-growing watersports is that the sport is accessible to most people between 10 and 70 years old. Prior watersport experience is not required. Another reason for the popularity is that progress is very quick, people can go from zero (no experience) to hero (riding upwind on foil ) in days. Here at Swell we have taught people wingsurfing with no experience and they were confident on foil in 3 days with around 6 hours of lessons.


Here’s an example schedule of what you can expect when learning wingfoiling

DAY 1: Brief introduction on terminology followed by beach practise with the wing (1,5 hours) followed by 1 hour on a large board getting comfortable with the wing

DAY 2: Learning to stand up on the board and using the wing to sail out and come back to shore.

DAY 3: Getting enough speed standing on the board to start engaging the foil. First short ‘flights’ on foil.

DAY 4: Getting longer time on foil and start learning and using pumping techniques to get you on foil quicker.

learn foiling


Windfoiling can be domne at lots of places arround the world, you need wind and water

What are historically good wind surfing and kitesurfing destinations also make for good wingfoiling destinations

What does a destination have to offer to make a good wingfoiling destination:

– A large area of open water (minimum depth around 1 meter or 3′). Lakes, rivers, or open oceans.

– Stable Winds (minimum wind of 10 knots or 3 Beaufort), ideally side or side onshore winds.

– Sandy shore to start from.


Maui, Hawaii

Canary islands, Spain


Cabarete, Dominican Republic

One of the reasons that Cabarete, the Dominican Republic is so popular for people learning wingfoiling is that we have the ideal conditions: For beginners the wind is usually light of around 8 to 12 knots between 11 in the morning and 13.00. After that the wind picks up to 16 to 18 knots which makes it perfect for the next stages of your wingfoiling progression.


Already know how to wingsurf? Cabarete offers worldclass conditions for advanced and expert riders: the gentle rolling waves at the outer reef at Cabarete Bay are ideal to de-power the wing and hone your surf foiling skills.

Rides of over 100 meters long are easily possible

Doing a downwinder from Cabarete to Encuentro the surfing beach is also a great way of exploring the stunning scenery along the north coast of the Dominican Republic


The wingsport is not just for foilers to enjoy, since the sport started several years ago variations have already popped up.

learn wingfoiling sports

Snow wing, Ice wing, Skate Wing, SUP Wing

So you can keep practising and enjoying your wing even if the season doesn’t allow you to go on the water.

Getting into wingfoiling is also a great entry into other aspects of foiling such as SUP Foil, Surf Foil and even Kite and Windsurf foiling.


In 2022 we started offering learn to wingfoil packages to Swell clients, and it has been received with great enthousiasm from our clients. Many do the learn to surf course in the morning and learn wingfoiling in the afternoon.

At Swell we have been open since 2009 teaching 1000’s of people the sport of surfing, with our learn to surf & yoga Retreats.


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kiteboarding dominican republic

It’s not just the surfing that is top class in Cabarete, in this updated 2022 Kitesurfing Dominican Republic guide you will find info on where and when to go, as well as all other relevant kiteboarding info to plan your kitesurfing holiday to the Dominican Republic with ease.

In case you are fed up with kiteboarding in a wet suit, come to the warm waters of the Caribbean, where you will be able to kiteboard in board shorts or a bikini!

What you will find in this kiteboarding guide:

Quick facts

Name:  República Dominicana (English: Dominican Republic, not the same as  Dominica which is a different island in the Caribbean)
Capital:  Santo Domingo
Location:  Caribbean region
Lat / Lon:  19°00′N 70°40′W
Currency:  Dominican peso
Language: Spanish
Coastline: 800 Miles / 1288 KM


If you are looking for a kitesurfing (or kiteboarding) destination for your next holiday, you should definitely consider putting the Caribbean island of the Dominican Republic on your short list of places to go
If you don’t want to read the entire article below, let us quickly give you 10 reasons why to choose Cabarete for your kitesurfing vacation:

  1. Super-steady, safe, side-onshore trade winds.
  2. Wide sandy beaches.
  3. Warm air and water temperatures.
  4. Lots of facilities (kite schools, kite rentals and kiteboard shops).
  5. Easy to get to.
  6. Lots of other activities to do other than kiting
  7. Variety of kite spots (flat water, waves, down winders)
  8. Leave the wet-suit behind and kite in board-shorts or bikinis
  9. Amazing choice of restaurants and bars on and off the beach
  10. Always a party to be had (if you want one)


There are many different kitesurfing beaches in the Dominican Republic, but the one area that really stands out is the Cabarete area on the North coast of the Dominican Republic. Cabarete is easily reached from Puerto Plata airport (POP) and is a short 25-minute car drive.

Dominican republic kitesurf spot map

The Kitesurfing spots in the Cabarete area:
(from East to West)


La Boca is a lagoon at the end of the river Yassica. It’s not a huge area, but because of this, the water at the river mouth is butter smooth, ideal for freestyle kitesurfers to practice their moves. There are some basic facilities at La Boca, restaurants and small shops for some drinks and food.
Video: Luis Alberto Cruz, (nephew of Sipriana, Swell’s longest-serving staff member) kitesurfing at La Boca

Conditions: Super-flat water
Good for: Kitesurfers who love flat water for Freestyle moves
Level: Intermediate and Experts
Watch out for: After rain, there could be some floating wood logs & getting tangled with other kiters in a small area is always a risk.
Getting there: Take a car or moto-taxi from Cabarete; 15 minutes East
Tips: Don’t forget to bring a kite pump.  Kiteboard downwind back to Cabarete


Cabarete’s main beach has several different sections: The up-wind part (East) is Cabarete’s windsurf area, but some kitesurfers venture there too, (although you might get the stink-eye from the rather territorial windsurfers). If you get too close to the windsurf schools, your kite might fall out of the sky because there’s a wind shadow (no steady wind) close to the beach.

The next part of the beach is called Bozo beach and this starts around the Ocean One & Ocean Dream developments. The wind shadow stops here, so you will find steady trade winds from here, all the way West.
200-300 meters west of Bozo is where Goleta beach starts, with reasonable flat water inside the reef and fun waves on the reef for wave kiters.

Conditions: Flat water with semi chop inside the reef, good waves on the reef
Good for: There’s something for everyone
Level: Beginners, Intermediate and Experts
Watch out for: Some shallow parts on the reef and at times (mostly Feb, March and April) there’s a heavy shore break at Bozo beach
Getting there: Right in the center of Cabarete (a couple of minutes walk from Swell)
Tip: Ride downwind to kitebeach from Cabarete Bay, a few tacks up wind and you’re back where you started.


World-famous Cabarete kite beach is just a few minutes ride (or 15 minutes walk along the beach from Cabarete main beach) from Swell. What makes Cabarete Kitebeach such a popular spot?  It’s because Cabarete Kitebeach has something to offer for every kiter of every level. Flatwater, good waves & steady trade winds are why many of the world’s best kitesurfers call kitebeach their home kite spot.

Conditions: Flat water – semi chop inside the reef, good waves on the reef
Good for: There’s something for everyone
Level: Beginners, Intermediate and Experts
Watch out for: In Summer time seasonal erosion makes the beach smaller
Getting there: Short motor  ride from Cabarete or walk West for 20 minutes from Bozo Beach
Tip: Good food and vibes at KiteClub Cabarete


Playa Encuentro is the top surfing spot in the Dominican Republic, ultra-consistent with waves year-round make it a favourite for the surfers. But it’s not just the surfers who love Playa Encuentro, as at around 2 in the afternoon, the wind picks up enough for the kitesurfers who also flock to this spot. This spot is ideal for kitesurfers who like to ride good waves with surfboards. Many kitesurfers will do a “downwinder” from Cabarete bay or Kitebeach, which takes about 15 to 20 minutes to enjoy good waves all along the coast.

Conditions: Waves
Good for: Wave riders
Level: Intermediate and Experts
Watch out for: Landing your kite is not easy, you might have to stand in the water (beware of sea urchins).  Don’t drop your kite when doing a downwinder from Cabarete, there are rocky spots without a beach for getting out of the water.
Tip: Go with a friend & landing is likely to be easier on a patch of sand just West of the main peak at Playa Encuentro

Wind and weather for Kitesurfing Dominican Republic

The winds that make Cabarete such a world-class kite surf destination are the steady Caribbean trade winds. Created by thermals around the equator, they generally start picking up in the afternoon and reach maximum strength by around 3pm in the afternoon. Normally winds are between 18 and 22 knots side-on-shore which is widely regarded as the most ideal wind for kitesurfing. The wind accelerates along the coast and reaches maximum strength at Cabarete.

Tip: Check sites like windy.tv and windguru Cabarete for accurate wind conditions in Cabarete (keep in mind that the forecasts usually shows 4-6 knots less than actual wind strength, since they don’t take the thermal effect along the coast into consideration)

There is no distinct on or off-season for kitesurfing in Cabarete, any month of the year can provide over 20 to 25 days of windy days in a month. However, there are certain months where the likelihood of wind is greater than other months.


Below is an indication of what to expect as far as windy days at certain times of the year for a kite or windsurf holiday to Cabarete

Best Months:
June, July & August
(Average of 20 to 25 days with 14+ knots of wind)

Good alternatives: 
January, February, March, April, May and December
(Average of 12 to 15 days of 14+ knots of wind).

So So months:
September, October & November
(Average of 5 to 12 days of 14+ knots of wind).


Let local kitesurf pro show you why Cabarete is still one of the best kite surf destinations in the world

One of the best things about the Dominican Republic is that it’s hard not to have a good time when you are looking for an active holiday, so when there’s a day without wind:  go surfing as the waves will be good, or take an adventure trip Canyoning.

Where to stay for a Dominican Kiteboard holiday?

Ok, we are going to be biased here ( look at the URL in your browser), even though we are called Swell Surf Camp, we get loads of kitesurfers (or people learning to kitesurf ) staying with us at Swell.

Why? Because they appreciate the communal & social vibe we provide. We eat breakfasts and dinners together, so you will not be staying in your room by yourself whilst on your holiday.

If you stay at Swell, you are guaranteed to meet new people.  You can kitesurf together, go on a day trip Canyoning or take a few learn-to-surf lessons with us.
We can book your kitesurf lessons for you, from complete beginners learn to kite courses, to someone who is looking for advanced kite surf lessons such as wave riding, jumping, learning to ride strapless or foiling.


So if you have decided to give the exciting sport of kitesurfing a try, have done your research, and have come to the conclusion that Cabarete is one of the best kitesurf destinations in the world; you’ve made a smart choice! Now you need to find the right kitesurf school in Cabarete. There are 2 choices: Contact us and we can prepare you with a stay and learn to kite package holiday with one of the 2 best schools in Cabarete, or you can contact the schools directly (by the way, we don’t charge extra for arranging your kite lessons).

Choice of kiteboard schools in Cabarete:
kitesurf school cabareteThere are at least a dozen or more kite surf schools in Cabarete, some are well established and very good, and some are, well not so. There are price differences too; but do keep in mind that kitesurfing is not a cheap sport, the lessons are not cheap and neither is the equipment.

Swell deals with Laurel Eastman Kiteboarding school (LEK), located at Cabarete beach, and with KiteClub at Cabarete Kitebeach. Both are very well-known and 2 of the most established, professionally run schools in Cabarete, neither of them are the cheapest kite schools, but what you will get with them is:

  • Qualified kitesurf instructors.
  • Top quality kite equipment during your lessons.
  • Helmets and impact vests during lessons.
  • A structured and organized lesson structure.

As said above, they are not the cheapest schools in Cabarete (per hour) however it might still work out cheaper having lessons with them versus another school or individual, here’s why:
Progress during your kite lessons will most likely be quicker (and safer) when taught by a very experienced kite instructor, using the right equipment (a choice of kite sizes) than when you get taught by an individual who uses old kites that repeatedly break or don’t fly properly (a badly flying kite is seriously dangerous)
Tip: Don’t just ask your mate to teach you kitesurfing, it will be most likely be unsafe and the quickest way to wreck his kite (or your skull). Also, private teaching by individuals not affiliated with a licensed kite school is banned for safety reasons on Cabarete beaches.


There are several kiteboard shops in Cabarete that sell new kites, kiteboard and kiteboarding accessories.  Also, most of the better schools will have a good collection of new and used kites for sale as they update their equipment regularly.
Prices: Expect to pay between $500 and $700 for a good used kite and kite bar, $800 to $1100 for a new kite and bar.
A used kiteboard is around $200 to $400 and a new kiteboard is between $500 and $800 USD.  Tips for buying second-hand kiteboarding gear: When buying a second-hand kite, check that the valves are all functioning (blow up the kite and leave it for a while to eliminate any leaks).  Check also the condition of the fabric (repairs are fine when done well, but the material should be crisp and not generally soft and worn).  Check the bar and lines completely for frayed nylon.  Check the safety release system still works.


flights dr
There are 4 major airports on the island and a couple of smaller ones too.  The Dominican Republic is actually located on Hispaniola, which is a BIG island; made up of 1/3 Haiti and 2/3 Dominican Republic.  It’s approximately 470km from Punta Cana in the far West to the Haitian Border in the East (that’s a 7 hour + drive).  

If you are planning on surfing the North coast, try to fly into Puerto Plata (airport code POP).  The 2nd best option is Santiago Los Caballeros (STI) and the 3rd best is Santo Domingo (SDQ).  Flying to Punta Cana might be cheap (lots of cheap charter flights go there to ferry people to the many all-inclusive hotels lining the coast) but it’s not a viable entry point if you want to surf.  Punta Cana is all about white sand beaches and all-inclusive; there’s no ‘real’ Dominican culture close by. 

American Airlines, Jet Blue, United, Air Canada, West Jet are just some of the flights arriving into POP, STI and SDQ.  There are also charter flights arriving daily from Europe.  You can see more flight suggestions on
 this page.


There are also Moto-taxis, which are small motorbikes costing (generally speaking) 50 to 100 pesos (just over one or two US dollars) for around 5km.  You will frequently hear the ‘ssssssssttt’ from a passing driver offering you a ride.  Be careful of the safety of these bikes and watch for very serious burns to your calf (commonly known as ‘the Dominican Tattoo’) from the exhaust pipe.  It’s a terrible way to start your surf vacation and will take weeks to heal.  It’s not unknown for these guys to double up as drug dealers or pimps, so beware.

Car rental is cheap but driving in the Dominican Republic is not for the faint-hearted.  Dominicans have a rather laissez-faire attitude towards driving, so always expect the unexpected (people coming out of junctions without looking, or driving on the wrong side of the road), don’t drive fast, never drive under the influence and you should stay safe. 

Keep your eyes open and your mirrors tuned, especially for the motos, as they will approach at speed from all directions.  A Sat Nav is a good idea for longer journeys as good sign posts are a rarity.  If you are involved in an accident, stay in your vehicle if it is safe to do so and call your insurance company.  Dominicans can tend to flock to an accident, especially if a local person is injured, and it can be intimidating.
If you rent a motorbike, wear a helmet; it’s not only the law, but in a country with a very poor R.T.A. record, it may just save your life.


Generally speaking, the Dominican Republic is a visa-free country to visit.  Very few nationalities require a visa to enter this Caribbean island.  The majority of nationalities though will need to purchase a Tourist Card upon entry at Puerto Plata (airport code POP), or any of the other airports of the Dominican Republic

The Tourist Card costs $10 USD and is valid for 30 days entry.  You need to pay for the card in USD only.  Some countries are exempt from this and I’ve provided a link below to check whether your country of origin requires a visa, a Tourist Card or neither.  Generally speaking, Americans, Canadians and Europeans don’t need a visa, but do require the Tourist Card.


So most of the medical-related websites, such as the CDC for example, will give you blanket advice about vaccinations required and list all medical risks.  The truth is that region to region, the risks vary considerably and some risks mentioned on these websites are not much of a risk at all.
Malaria is practically non-existent in the Dominican Republic with the last reported case in 2011.  The Zika virus; again, although it is reported there have been cases in the Dominican Republic, these have been centred in Santo Domingo, the capital city, located on the south coast, which is about 4 hours by road from Cabarete on the North Coast.   

There are no recent reports of Zika on the North Coast at the time of writing.  The day time mosquito (Aedes) carries the worst diseases, including Dengue, so it’s obviously better to prevent being bitten at all.  Wear a good repellent containing DEET.  Windy coastal areas (like Cabarete) have far fewer mosquitos than inland on the island.
Hepatitis A and B vaccines are recommended; Hep A can be caught from contaminated food or water and Hep B from sexual partners who are themselves contaminated, or even from getting a tattoo done.  If you feel you might be in either risk group, it could be a good idea to get these shots.


Top things to do in & around Cabarete, other than kiteboarding


  • Surfing
  • Canyoning
  • Party (lots of bars and clubs on the main beach of Cabarete)
  • Beachside dining
  • Stand up paddle surfing
  • Windsurfing
  • Sunbathe
  • Visit Puerto Plata
  • Shopping
  • Sailing
  • Fishing
  • Snorkeling and diving

We hope you enjoyed this Kitesurfing Dominican Republic guide, if you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to send us over your questions or comments.  If you are interested in a kiteboarding holiday to Cabarete, or a surf holiday, by yourself, or with friends or family we’d also love to welcome you to Swell.

Here’s a sample kitesurfing package we can provide for you at Swell:

  • 7 night’s accommodation for one person in a shared room or a private room
  • our wonderful, daily breakfast
  • 4 home-cooked dinners at Swell (restaurants are right on our doorstep for when we are not cooking).
  • 8 hours of one-on-one kitesurfing instruction with an IKO-qualified kite instructor
  • round-trip Puerto Plata airport transfers included
  • free wifi in the communal areas
  • safe, complimentary drinking water
  • amazing communal vibe

The cost for this package, in a shared room, is $1199 USD and in a private room, is $1599 USD.

We hope to see you soon in Cabarete, the Kiteboard capital of the Caribbean!



Have a look at our kite surf and surf accommodation in Cabarete by Swell Surf Camp

Dominican republic kitesurf spot map




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Surf Camp Job Openings:

Surf Instructor Job

Positions open for 2023 – 2024

Minimum commitment 12 months, longer is possible and preferred

Surf instructors

Cabarete, Dominican Republic

Requirements for surf camp job in Cabarete, Dominican Republic:

  • Previous teaching experience & ideally ISA qualified
  • Fluent in english
  • Reliable
  • Social
  • Flexible


Swell has set whole new standards in accommodation and guest experience of surf camps.

Our place has a unique vibe and we have great clients, mostly professional people, who stay with us. The work can be 7 days a week when we are really busy but we have 3 coaches full time and normally between 6 and 12 people taking lessons at any one time.

Typical working day at Swell

  • Arrive at 6.45 to start going to the surf beach with the clients with the taxi Swell provides.
  • Surf lesson from 7 to 9 at our local surf beach
  • Back to Swell for home cooked breakfast
  • At 10.30 we go back to the surf beach for either a lesson or a guided surf session with the clients
  • 12.15 back to Swell
  • Instructors have the afternoon off: go surf, wingfoiling, kitesurfing or nap time.
  • Instructors are back at Swell at 17.00 for theory surf lessons or surf analysis.
  • Either dinner at Swell at 18.30 or when there is no dinner at Swell that evening instructors can go for their own dinner arrangements with or without clients.

If you read our Trip Advisor reviews, you will get a sense of how important the staff mixing with the clients is to the overall success of Swell.

Salary will vary dependent on skills offered and experience. Spanish is not essential but is an advantage.

Interested in working for Swell?
Fill out the form below, we get lots of interests from people, so double-check if your info is correct and up to date since incomplete applications will not be considered.


Incomplete forms, or applications not sent trough this form will not be taken in consideration.
For reference, average hours worked per week at Swell is 25
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.



About Swell

We provide a quality surf holiday for surfers of all levels. The Surf & Yoga Holiday is a popular package where clients learn to surf and we teach Yoga in our garden 3 times a week.

The accommodation at Swell is of the highest standard found anywhere in the world for a surf camp. Stylish rooms and comfortable beds + AC and Fan and Ensuite bathroom

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surfing unbroken waves

Surf Camp Job Openings:

Updated: April 2021

Surf Instructor Job

Positions open for 2021

Minimum commitment 8 months, longer is possible and preferred

Surf instructors, surf guides

Cabarete, Dominican Republic

Bali, Indonesia

Requirements for surf camp job in Cabarete, Dominican Republic
Previous teaching experience & ideally ISA qualified

Swell has set whole new standards in accommodation and guest experience of surf camps.

Our place has a unique vibe and we have great clients, mostly professional people, who stay with us. The work can be 7 days a week when we are really busy but we have 3 coaches full time and normally between 6 and 12 people taking lessons at any one time. Our surf coaches have quite an easy run compared to European surf schools, though work starts early (6.30am) it is done by lunchtime. Then we like our coaches to socialise and take part in other fun activities with the guests. If you read our Trip Advisor reviews, you will get a sense of how important the staff mixing with the clients is to the overall success of Swell.

We provide accommodation and daily breakfast + 4 dinners (eating out in Cabarete costs just a few dollars for other meals). Salary will vary dependent on skills offered and experience. Spanish is not essential but is an advantage.


in 2021 Swell is opening a new surf hotel. Located in the cool surf town of Bingin on the SW coast of Bali. With world-class waves such as Bingin, padang padang, Impossibles and Uluwatu within a few minutes.

For Swell Bali we have the following Surf Camp Job positions open:

Surf guide / Surf Instructor

  • Needs to be an advanced surfer.
  • Have experience surfing in Bali
  • Good communication skills
  • Fluent in English and Ideally some Indonesian
  • Experience in hospitality.

Interested in working for Swell?
Fill out the form below, we get lots of interests from people, so double-check if your info is correct and up to date since incomplete applications will not be considered.


Incomplete forms, or applications not sent trough this form will not be taken in consideration.
For reference, average hours worked per week at Swell is 25
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.



About Swell

We provide a quality surf holiday for surfers of all levels. The Surf & Yoga Holiday is a popular package where clients learn to surf and we teach Yoga in our garden 3 times a week.

The accommodation at Swell is of the highest standard found anywhere in the world for a surf camp. Stylish rooms and comfortable beds + AC and Fan and Ensuite bathroom

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visit cabarete dominican republic

10 Reasons to Visit Cabarete

Once a minute fishing village on the Dominican Republic’s northern shores, Cabarete now stands as the extreme sports capital of the island, if not the whole Caribbean. While Cabarete is home to some of the Dominican’s most pristine beaches, it is much more than just a scenic destination from which to take in coastal views. When most travelers think of the DR, they conjure images of massive all-inclusive resorts that stick out from the coastline like an unwanted growth. Cabarete does not fit this mold.

While Cabarete is not lacking in lodging options, there is wild and untamed land to explore, isolated beaches to stroll, and of course waves to surf. Keep reading to learn 10 reasons why you need to make Cabarete, Dominican Republic your next travel destination.

1. It’s superb for beginner surfers wanting to learn to surf.

Learning to surf is tough, and if you’re not on beginner-friendly waves, it can be near impossible to progress. Fortunately for beginner surfers, Cabarete is full of fun and forgiving waves that will have you up and riding in no time. Playa Encuentro, where our boutique surf resort is located, is home to a variety of surf breaks suitable for all levels. Beginner surfers will find a picturesque beach break with a friendly sand bottom, perfect for learning.

Our surf school spends the majority of their time at Bobos, a perfect learning wave. In addition to surfing in model learning conditions at Playa Encuentro, guests at Swell Surf Camp will have the opportunity to learn from the best surf instructors on the island and participate in surf theory classes.

2. There are serious surf breaks for advanced surfers

In addition to beginner-friendly breaks, Playa Encuentro is home to some serious reef breaks that attract intermediate and advanced surfers from all over the world. Destroyers, a racing, and hollow reef break is ideal for bodyboarders and expert only surfers who are looking for doggy door exit barrels. “The left” is exactly what it sounds like, a solid left-hand reef break that turns on during winter months and provides long, clean rides.

The main peak at Encuentro has a fun left and right-hander for intermediate and advanced surfers. Coco Pipe, right next to Bobos, is a fast-breaking shallow reef break for experts only. There are even a few offshore reefs that can turn on during the right swell. So, regardless of your level of expertise, Playa Encuentro has a surf break for you.

3. You can learn to Kitesurf

While the morning in Playa Encuentro and throughout Cabarete’s coastline is perfect for surfing, the afternoons are idyllic for kiting. Cabarete’s beaches aren’t just some of the best in the country, or the Caribbean, for kiting, they rank among the best in the entire world. Kite surfers travel far and wide to get to the shores of Cabarete and showcase their talents at Kite Beach.

Fortunately for travelers looking to take up a new hobby, Cabarete is also home to some of the best kitesurf instructors in the world. Learning to kite can be dangerous, so it is important to learn from the best. Cabarete boasts a variety of kiting spots that cater to all levels. Advanced kite surfers will find the waves at the outer reefs to be a suitable challenger, while beginners will feel safe and comfortable in the calm waters of Kite Beach and La Boca.

4. It’s close to El Choco National Park

Located less than 15 minutes from the beach and the center of Cabarete, El Choco National Park gives travelers the opportunity for an unparalleled wilderness adventure. With hiking and mountain bike trails, glistening freshwater lagoons, and a labyrinth of caves to explore, El Choco National Park is a paradise for those seeking adventure. The park is home to a diverse array of species, including over 30 species of birds, lizards, and bats. Explore the park solo, or with a bilingual guide.

5. The local nightlife

Cabarete shines just as brightly during the night as its sun-soaked shores do during the day. A plethora of small, beach bars and night clubs line the waterfront and offer cocktails, live music, and all the fun a traveler could ask for. If you’re looking for a high-end night, head to Ocean World Marina to visit the variety of restaurants and entertainment options, including a casino. Start your night off with sunset drinks under the shady, palm tree adjacent bars on Cabarete beach and see where the night takes you.

6. Horseback riding along the beach has never been more fun

In Cabarete, horseback riding on the beach is taken to a whole new level at the pristine Sea Horse Ranch Equestrian Center. Go for trail rides through the jungle, explore the coastline on horseback, or even take lessons. The center offers tours on over 7-miles of trails and beaches. Advanced riders can even take lessons in jumping and other advanced equestrian activities.

7. The DR’s world-class snorkeling & diving

Situated on the northern shores of the Dominican Republic, Cabarete is ideally position for snorkeling and diving expeditions into the enchanting Caribbean Sea. Just a stone’s throw from Cabarete is the town of Sousa, where many dive and snorkeling tours operate. If you’re a first-time diver, fret not, there are plenty of programs that will get you PADI certified in just a few classes. For more advanced divers, or those looking to snorkel, many companies offer full-day or half-day expeditions.

8. It’s within reach of secluded beaches

Playa Caleton, a calm watered, crescent-shaped, secluded beach is the perfect getaway for travelers looking for a little extra relaxation. The isolated shores of Playa Caleton are surrounded by lush vegetation and rocky outcrops, many of which are carved into unique sculptures. Take a dip in the emerald green water or relax on the sandy shores, either way, you’re sure to fall in love with Playa Caleton.

9. Cabarete’s unique local food scene

While Cabarete is small compared to many travel destinations in the Dominican, its food scene is both authentic and diverse making it perfect for food-loving travelers. In Cabarete, travelers will find a diverse food scene with options from all over the world. In the mood for Mexican? Head to Gordito’s Fresh Mex, a local favorite with plans to expand all over the DR. Want something a bit more authentic?

Wilson’s at La Boca is a BBQ beach shack that serves up freshly grilled fish among other favorites. Cabarete Coffee Company serves up breakfast favorites, smoothies, and of course excellent coffee. Cabarete beach is also a hub for fine dining. Enjoy fresh seafood or steaks cooked to perfection at La Casita de Papi’s Seafood.

10. The many adventure opportunities

Cabarete may be the watersport capital of the Caribbean, but there are endless opportunities for adventure inland as well. One of the most popular activities amongst Swell Surf Camp guests—other than surfing— is canyoning through Cabarete’s nearby waterfall system.

This adrenaline-filled adventure will have you jumping off waterfalls, swimming through gorges, and exploring caves. Another popular activity among travelers in Cabarete is ziplining at Laguna Dudu. The zipline at Laguna Dudu is not your average zip line, it sends you soaring above the lagoon from the nearby cliffs before you plunge into the picturesque water.


As well as the physical and psychological benefits of surfing and the way it allows for a healthy lifestyle, you can also meet new people and forget about the stresses of life for a couple of hours. To finish our guide, we want to provide a few considerations before booking your first surf lesson!

Your height and weight aren’t important because there are various shapes and sizes of boards.

  • Don’t worry about your fitness levels right now because your stamina will improve over time.
  • Surfboards can even be custom-made, if necessary.
  • You should NEVER feel as though you’re too old to start surfing.

Don’t live life according to other people’s expectations or rules, make your own rules (perhaps not on the road, but you get the idea!). If you feel you’ll enjoy surfing and you like the sound of the many benefits we’ve discussed here today, we have three words for you; GO FOR IT!


Teaching people the sport of surfing in a safe, quick and fun way is what we specialise in at Swell Surf Camp. We have taught 1000’s of people the basics of surfing.

Age? Well the average age of a Swell client is 37, which roughly means for every 20 year old we teach the sport of surfing, we also teach a 54 year old. We have taught people well in their 60’s the sport of surfing

Adult surf camp
Learn to surf in the Caribbean with us

Interested in changing your life to see the health benefits of learning to surf?

learn to surf holiday

Send us a message today and we’ll get you up and riding…regardless of your age!


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best kitesurfing destinations


  1. Cabarete, Dominican Republic
  2. Cumbuco, Brazil
  3. Tarifa, Spain
  4. La Ventana, Mexico
  5. Maui, Hawaii
  6. Mancora, Peru
  7. Sumbawa, Indonesia


Even though Swell is a ‘surf’ camp, that doesn’t mean all we do is surf. About 25% of our clients either combine their surf holiday with a kite-surfing course, or they just focus on kiteboarding and don’t surf at all. Another group of our clients don’t come to Swell at all for any kind of lessons, but come to Cabarete for a kiteboarding holiday and choose to stay Swell because it’s the most social place to stay for active solo travellers.

One of the recurring questions we get from our clients who are ‘hooked’ on kitesurfing is ‘which other kitesurf destinations are worthwhile going to?’ So, here is a list of place which are our personal favourites for kiteboarding.


Location: Caribbean; on the north coast of the Dominican Republic

Kitesurfing Cabarete
Kitesurfing Cabarete

What makes it so good: Ok, maybe we are a teeny bit biased since we are here, but it’s actually more to do with the fact that we traveled to 100’s of surf and kitesurf destinations around the world, before we chose Cabarete to base ourselves and build Swell surf camp. Basically, Swell is in the best kitesurf destination in the World, in our view.

It’s great because it has side-on tradewinds (which are safer if you drop your kite in the water), has large, open, sandy beaches and warm air & water temperatures. You will find flat water kiting, long down-winders and also plenty of waves to ride. Consistent winds most of the year round make this an ideal kite-surf destination for kitesurfers of all levels. Plenty of quality kitesurf schools are to be found in Cabarete, and with easy access in and out of the warm water, make this an ideal place to learn to kite.

How to get there: Direct flights from North America to Puerto Plata international airport and a 25 minute taxi ride later and you are in the action sport capital of the Caribbean; Cabarete.

Conditions: Flat water in the lagoon, waves on the reefs and everything in between means there’s something for everyone.

Best time to go: Best winds in Cabarete are between April and August. February and March can also be good, windy months. Average wind strength of 16 to 20 knots, side-onshore

Best for: Riders of all levels: from complete beginners to experts. Ideal for an active holiday, combine kitesurfing with surfing and adventure trips.

Tip: Do a downwinder from La Boca to Cabarete.
More info:
Windforecast link (opens a new window)
More info on Kitesurfing in the Dominican Republic
Cabarete kitesurf guide

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $


Location: South America, North of Fortaleza
What makes it so good: Between September and December there are steady, strong winds. Wide open beaches and a large kitesurfing community

Kitebsurfing Cumbuco
Kitebsurfing Cumbuco

How to get there: Fly into Fortaleza, take a 1 hour taxi ride to Cumbuco

Best time to go: Between September and December

Best for: Intermediate kitesurfers who love doing downwinders, or experts that like to practise their freestyle moves on the lagoon just north of Cumbuco

Tip: Visit Jericoacoara north of Cumbuco, a charming wind and kitesurf community, surrounded by sand dunes
More info:
Windforecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $


Location: Europe, Southern tip of Spain

Tarifa as a kitesurf destination
Tarifa kitesurf destination

What makes it so good: When there is wind there is lots of wind, so bring your small kites only

How to get there: Drive within Europe or fly into Jerez airport, from there it’s 1,5 hours to Tarifa

Best time to go: June, July , August, although it will be very very busy

Best for: Experienced kitesurfers only, as it’s crowded and busy. Tarifa is not a good place to learn to kite.

Tip: Plenty of nice cultural places to visit nearby

More info:
Windforecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $$


Location: North America, Mexico on the Baja peninsula

Kiting at La Ventana, Mexico
Kiting at La Ventana, Mexico

What makes it so good: Good conditions for kiters of all levels who are looking for crystal clear, ‘flat’ water to cruise in.

How to get there: Fly into Cabo San Lucas international airport, a taxi from the airport to La Ventana is about 3 hours

Best time to go on a kite holiday: Between November and March

Best for: Beginners and intermediate kiters

Tip: Enjoy the fine Mexican food and go whale watching

More info:
Windforecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $


Location: Pacific islands of Hawaii, North Shore Maui

Kiteboarding Maui
Kiteboarding Maui

What makes it so good: Great conditions for advanced kitesurfers who want to ride the waves.

How to get there: Fly into Honolulu take an island hopper to Maui and then hire a car or take a taxi to Kitebeach

Best time to go: Between April and October

Best for: Advanced riders

More info:
Wind forecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $$$


Location: South America, North of Peru, just south of Ecuador

Kitesurfer @ Lobitos
Kitesurfer @ Lobitos

What makes it so good: Ok wind (can be gusty and is off-shore), but it great waves for advanced kitesurfers who want to ride some of the world’s longest waves

How to get there: Fly into Lima, then take another plane to Piura, then a 3 hour taxi ride to get to Mancora

Best time to go: Between September and December

Best for: Advanced to expert kiters. Mancora is suitable for beginners as well, but the wave spots are for very experienced riders, only as the wind is side-offshore and can be very gusty.

Tip: Eat the local ceviche, go and surf at Chicama the worlds longest left

More info:
Wind forecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $


Location: Asia, on the north coast of Sumbawa

Waveriding at Sumbawa
Waveriding at Sumbawa

What makes it so good: High quality waves for kite wave-riders

How to get there: Fly into Bali, then another flight to Sumbawa and then a few hours in a taxi

Best time to go: Between September and November

Best for: Expert kitesurfers; hardcore waves, side-offshore wind means there is not much room for error, the reef is also very shallow and very sharp

Tip: Bring spare kite equipment, since there are no kite shops here and chances are some of you kite equipment may get eaten by the waves.

More info:Windforecast link (opens new window)

Prices range for a kitesurf holiday: $


These are some of our personal favorite kitesurf destinations we have visited over the years. There are of course many more stunning kitesurf spots to be found. Worth a mention are: The Philippines, Mauritius, The Canary Islands, and if you don’t mind the cold, the Netherlands. Before going on a kite surf holiday anywhere, make sure you look up the local wind statistics, certain spots can be consistently world class in certain months and then be without wind over 10 knots at other times of the year.

Websites such as Windguru give accurate forecasts and also provide wind archives per day, week and month of the year in their archives.

Planning on a kitesurfing trip to Cabarete and have any questions? Shoot us an email, we have been living and kitesurfing here for over 10 years so can tell you all about the ins and outs of kitesurfing in Cabarete.


Swell works with the best Cabarete kitesurf school and we have created an all-inclusive learn to kitesurf package.  We hope to welcome you in our place in the Caribbean soon.



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At Swell we want to make sure our clients get the best surf experience possible, and the best way to guarantee this is by having top staff work for us. Last year Ricci was at Swell for 3 months, and he left a great impression on the clients and the rest of our staff. Because Ricci had commitements in Europe as a Snowboard instructor & guide in the Alps he had to leave us for a season in the snow.

Ricci Swell Surf Instructor
Ricci Swell Surf Instructor

Ricci was keen to come back to Swell, and we are very keen to have him back. for the full 2018 / 2019 winter season.

Alexandra (Alex) is Ricci’s partner and she is the new surf photographer at Swell taking photos of our clients who are interested in the photo packages she offers. And additional bonus is that Alexandra also takes video footage of the clients during their lessons, so after the lessons are done the footage can be played back to analyze where improvements can be made in the surf technique of the clients.

Alexandra has years of experience as an action and lifestyle photographer, and so far the lifestyle and surf photos she has produced are of great quality.

Here are some sample photos of here first few days in Cabarete

Surfing Encuentro
Morning at Playa Encuentro
Encuentro surf lessons
Encuentro surf lessons
Swell Surfboards
Swell Surfboards
Groups Shots
Groups Shots
Playa Encuentro
Playa Encuentro
Swell visitor
Swell visitor
Playa Encuentro golden morning light
Playa Encuentro golden morning light

As you can see Alexandra is a great photographer, so if you want to have your surf photos taken and a surf video analysis during your stay at Swell, sign up for the photo package and go home with your memories in HD photo format.


Normally when one surf instructor arrives another instructor leaves, this winter we have deceided to change this, since it’s looking like it’s going to be a very busy winter season for us here in the Caribbean. As a result Lee, our lovely English surf instructor has decided to stay on for the rest of our high season.
So our team for the winter season 2019 is:

    1. Lee (english) – Surf Instructor
    1. Ricci (Italian) – Surf Instructor
    1. Neno (Dominican) – Surf Instructor
    1. Jeffrey (Dominican) – Surf Instructor
    1. Alexandra (French) – Surf photographer

So if you are interested in learning to surf, then have a look at the learn to surf courses we offer at Swell and contact us today to secure your surf holiday.


About Swell: We provide active holidays for adults in the Caribbean. Ideal for solo travelers and couples who are looking for a fun and social vacation.
See our video below.

We hope to see you soon in the Caribbean
Clare & Jeroen Mutsaars

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Guloya Festival


It is no surprise, given the country’s rich and varied history, starting with the original Taino Caribbean people and followed by invasions from the Spanish, French and even the Americans in 1965, that the Dominican Republic has such an incredible array of cultural and music festivals and celebrations on offer, year-round.


For Dominicans, music and dance are vital ingredients for a good life and so when they decide to put on a party, you can guarantee that it will be an almighty spectacle. Combine that with religious syncretism, a history of slavery, emancipation and going even further back, roots in Voodoo and Changó, you can begin to get a picture of just how varied and entertaining their festivals and parades are.

We want you to know where and when these festivals take place so you don’t miss out on some of the very best things to do in the Dominican Republic. We’ve put them more or less in date order, so you can plan a trip to travel around the island and join in the fun.

Bear in mind that getting around in the Dominican Republic is pretty easy; coaches or buses (Caribe Tours and Metro Tours) travel South and North, East and West between all major cities and there are smaller, more localised mini-buses or taxis, called gua-guas and carritos respectively, which flit between towns and offer very affordable transport. It’s safe to get around too, just follow the usual precautions you would use in any city in the world; Dominicans are super-friendly and helpful and many speak English too.


New Year’s Eve all cities, especially Santo Domingo, Santiago and Cabarete – Dec 31st/Jan 1st

We may as well start with the very beginning of the year: All major towns and cities on the island will enjoy bringing in the New Year. In the capital, Santo Domingo, revellers head to The Malecón (which is Ave. George Washington). Bordering the ocean, this wide avenue will host music of all genres with dancing and fireworks continuing through the night. On the north coast, the surf-beach town of Cabarete has one of the most popular parties, with live bands on the beach and fireworks + a party to last the whole night.

Guloya Festival San Pedro de Macorís

When January 1st

Guloya Festival

This is a festival not to be missed if you are looking for one of the most colourful and vibrant on the whole island. The Guloya Festival is held to celebrate the start of the new year and more importantly, the considerable cultural influence of the Cuban immigrants who founded this town when fleeing from their own country’s War of Independence in the 1800’s. UNESCO has listed this spectacular festival as a ‘Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Patrimony of Humanity’.


Where: Major cities and towns
When: October through January

Baseball in the Dominican Republic
Baseball in the Dominican Republic

Did you know that many of the Major League Baseball players in the United States are Dominicans? Baseball to the Dominicans is as important as their music and dancing and is a vital part of local culture. All towns will have a baseball ground of some description and the larger stadiums are funded and maintained by wealthy benefactors. Since the 1950’s all 30 MBL franchises have a training academy in the Dominican Republic. The natural athleticism of Dominicans unsurprisingly leads to their success first at home and then often in the US leagues.

If you want to spectate at one of these high quality and lively matches, then head for the professional league (L.I.D.O.M.) baseball teams, based in Santo Domingo (Estadio Quisqueya), San Pedro de Marcoris (Estadio Tetelo Vargas), La Romana (Estadio Francisco Micheli), San Francisco de Macoris (Estadio Julián Javier) or Santiago (Estadio Cibao). Lower league teams can be found in Puerto Plata and most larger towns throughout the island.

Día de Duarte

Where:various cities
When: January 26th.

Juan Pablo Duarte is revered as the founding father of the Dominican Republic, and his birthday, January 26th, is celebrated with carnivals all over the island, including (of course) music and dancing in Santo Domingo, Santiago, Puerto Plata, San Pedro de Macorís, Samaná and La Romana.


Where: all across the island
When:  The whole month of February,  especially February 27th.

carnival in the Dominican Republic
Carnival in the Dominican Republic

February 27th marks the Dominican Republic’s Independence Day. After years of emancipation by several different occupying forces, you can understand why the Dominicans celebrate their freedom every Sunday in February, right across the island. You will find Carnivals in most of the towns each Sunday in February; Santo Domingo, Santiago, La Romana, Punta Cana, La Vega, Bonao, Río San Juan and Puerto Plata will all hold celebrations. Each region has its own carnival characters, for example, Lechones will be in Santiago and Taimáscaros in Puerto Plata, but also ‘Comparsas’ and other Dominican folklore characters in each parade. If you want to wait for the big one, be sure to be in Santo Domingo on the 27th of February, on the Malecón, when the winners of each regional carnival meet and compete in one huge parade. Cabarete on the north coast now also hosts a great carnival parade.

Cabarete Sand Castle Festival

Where: Cabarete
When:February for 10 days

Cabarete beach is transformed for 10 days in February for the annual sandcastle competition. Forget your bucket turrets and shaky ramparts; these sandcastles are real works of art, worthy of any art gallery exhibition. What a crying shame that they will all be destroyed once the competition winner is announced!

Barceló Desalia Festival

Where:  Punta Cana
When: February.
Organised by the famous Ron Barcelo (the rum company), this is the 2nd largest electronic dance music festival in the Caribbean and is held in Punta Cana during February. Approximately 5000 revellers will dance to some of the biggest names in this genre of music.

Semana Santa (Easter)

Where: whole island, particularly Cabarete
When: Easter

Semana Santa in Cabarete
Semana Santa in Cabarete

The majority of Dominicans these days are practising Catholics, so the Religious significance of Easter is huge. Santo Domingo sees the biggest religious parade on Good Friday with a mass at the main Cathedral on Easter Saturday.

However, once Good Friday has been celebrated quietly and respectfully, most Dominicans actually head for the beaches (especially young people) for the party of all parties. The surf town of Cabarete is the pick of the bunch and is worth avoiding over Easter weekend if you are not into noise, music and dancing. If you are, then you will enjoy a spectacular concert right on the beach and streets packed full of excitable revellers. This party lasts from late Friday night until Monday morning!

Cimarrón Festival

Where: Cabral only
When: weekend after Easter.

In Cabral, during Easter week you will find the Cimarrón Festival, lasting for 3 days, the following weekend after the Easter holidays. The festival celebrates much older traditional African practices, mixed with the traditional burning of the Judas doll, as well as Cachuas, who hold whips whilst wearing beautiful papier mache, multicolor masks with horns, set to impersonate the colonial master as well as the abused slaves of old. It’s a very traditional festival; not very ‘touristy’ as it is not on the regular tourist routes, but that’s not to say you won’t be welcome to go along and enjoy this celebration of history and culture.

San Juan Bautista Festival

Where: only in San Juan de Managua
When:  June
This festival offers a perfect example of how religious syncretism defines the Dominican people: Celebrating both Changó, a god revered in the ancient religion of the West African Yoruba people, along with Saint John the Baptist. This festival, as with all Dominican festivals, has enough music and dance to keep you entertained all day and all night.


Where: only in Santo Domingo
When: Dates vary, normally May or June.

Housed in a baseball stadium in the capital, Barbarella is organised by Presidente (the best beer in the Dominican Republic) and is the biggest electronic music event in the Caribbean.

Puerto Plata Cultural festival

Where: Puerto Plata city
When: during July (normally).

In this fiesta patronal, you will enjoy a variety of concerts and parades where you can dance to merengue, salsa, blues and jazz and watch demonstrations of African tribal dances, all taking place around the ancient San Felipe Fort. You’ll also enjoy arts and crafts exhibitions near the Central Park which showcase the work of many local artisans.

Festival de Merengue

Where: Santo Domingo
When: July or August,

Puerto Plata in late September (dates can vary).
Merengue originated in the Dominican Republic and is a joyous music genre, suiting the Dominican character perfectly. Legend has it that this close form of the dance (couples holding each other tightly whilst their hips flow and move to the fast rhythm) began when slaves were chained closely together to work in the sugar plantations and were unable to separate to dance. As a result, the Merengue dance is incredibly sexy and dynamic. If you want to go to one of these stunning festivals, take a dance lesson in this fairly simple dance style so you can join in. The dance is energetic and somewhat frenetic, but it’s also beautiful to watch as a Merengue specialist will keep their upper body in a smooth majestic rhythm while their hips do all the work.

In Santo Domingo and also in Puerto Plata, all along the Malecóns in either city, you will see Merengue bands and dancers showing the very best way to enjoy this wonderful music.

Fiesta Patria de la Restauración

Where: All cities
When: August 16th

Celebrating the day the Dominican Republic finally gained its independence from Spain, this nationwide festival will lead to parades, street festivals, concerts and food festivals in all major towns.

Dominican Republic Fashion Week

Where: Santo Domingo
When: October
Dominicans love their fashion and the capital city has some great shopping on offer. During October, top designers will display their latest designs on the catwalks.

The Dominican Republic Jazz Festival

2018 dates are; Punta Cana August 24/25,
Santiago Oct 27
Santo Domingo Oct 28
Sosua Nov 1st
Puerto Plata Nov 2nd
Cabarete, November 3rd and 4th

DR jazz festival

This amazing Jazz festival will leave you breathless. From humble beginnings, the festival is now huge and heavily funded by major sponsors. There are several locations to enjoy not just the best jazz musicians of the Dominican Republic, but also guest appearances from Jazz stars from all over the world. If you can only manage one location, we especially recommend Cabarete for the best venue, as the festival there lasts two days and often has the best head-liners. The stage is right on the beach, so there’s no need to interrupt your sun holiday to enjoy the music. You can see more information on this amazing yearly festival on their website: https://drjazzfestival.com/

Merengue Típico Festival

Where: Guananico
When:  November

Another chance to enjoy a traditional Merengue festival, this annual event is held in a smaller town, close to Puerto Plata. If you want a truly authentic musical experience, this is it.

I hope we have given you a taste of the amazing array of festivals, parades, carnivals and music festivals on offer year-round in the Dominican Republic. Don’t stay inside your all-inclusive hotel and ‘enjoy’ mediocre food and watered-down drinks; get out and about and travel cheaply and easily around this stunningly beautiful and diverse country. The people will LOVE to see you at their parades and festivals; they are proud of their amazing and varied culture and will enjoy sharing the celebrations with you.


So as you can see and read, the Dominican Republic has more to offer than just a water sport holiday. Combine your surf holiday with any of these festival to get sport and culture on your holiday to the Dominican Republic.

That’s why the saying is:

“The Dominican Republic has it all”

We hope to welcome you to our Surf retreat in the Caribbean

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