My trip to Dominican Republic was my first and only experience with a completely different type of travel, this vacation was of the all-inclusive variety. Let me preface the rest of this post by saying: I have nothing against all-in traveling, These kinds of trips are very good at delivering what they promise…mainly lots of eating, drinking and relaxing!
While staying in London, I became good friends with two girls who have now become some of my closest friends. At the timw we were all in the middle of completing various University degrees and we craved some much deserves fun in the sun. One of the best ways we could imagine spending our school holiday was to participate in the great Canadian tradition of all-inclusive vacationing. On a side note: if you every want to find a Canadian in a beach resort, just look for a large group, all carrying huge handheld drink coolers with them to the pool bar. 95% of the time, they will turn out to be Canadian.
If I’m being honest, the holiday played out exactly as you would assume. The focus was relaxation, the food consisted of never ending buffets, and the drinks were extra boozy and abundant. All in all, it was a great way to relax and try to pretend like we weren’t going to be more stressed, since we went on vacation in the Caribbean, instead of writing essays.
Perhaps the most memorable day of the trip was the only day spent away from the resort. I went on the trip having never been on a beach holiday and I was slightly more in favor of exploring “the real” Dominican Republic. Determined to peer outside the glamorous hotel walls, I convinced the girls to go on a day trip with me into a more local area. As soon as we drove into the city, the weather started to act up. Little did we know, that in Haiti, there was a hurricane and we were experiencing a severe tropical storm as a result. The streets instantly filled with rain, some of the buildings began to flood, it all happened very quickly.
I had obviously noticed the living conditions of locals on our drive outside of the resort, but it wasn’t until the bad weather hit that I realized how vastly different this country was, not only from my home, but also from the idealized portrayal that you get from simply staying within the resort. If I every get the chance to revisit, I would love to do a little more exploring and a little less sun tanning.
Over all, the trip was a success. I would be lying if I said I didn’t love the all-inclusive resort. It was a beautiful place to relax and enjoy a slow paced week in the sun. My only complaint was that I would have liked to see more of Dominican Republic. While I love relaxing with a drink in my hand, I think I’m also an adventure seeking traveler at heart.