Entertainment and Events
- Where to Go
- The Best of the Dominican Republic
- A Nature Lover’s Dominican Trek
- The Sexiest Dominican Beaches
- Historical Dominican Road Trip
- A Dominican Culture Tour
- Carnaval and Its Masks
- Planning Your Dominican Wedding
- Dominican Adventures
- Golfing the Dominican Republic
- Dominican Music and Dance
- La Ruta del Mango
- Day-Tripping in Monte Plata
- The Best Small Resorts
Boca Chica is a beach town and not known for high cultural entertainment, but the bigger hotels tend to offer a wide variety of water sports and activities for daytime fun and have their own shows in the evenings. The Hotel Oasis Hamaca has a casino open to the public and one of the most formal discos in the area. Here you can find either live music or great salsa and merengue beats for a younger crowd. Those who are not guests of the hotel must pay a cover charge for the disco.
Keep in mind that while Boca Chica has one of the safest beaches for children to swim in and many family-friendly hotels, it also has a long-standing sex tourism scene. The sex industry has sustained Boca Chica’s bad reputation, and prostitution is big business here. After sundown, the atmosphere shifts from lazy beach town to a more debased one, and blatant offers for prostitution are not unheard of.
Many of the Boca Chica hotels (both all-inclusives and some smaller ones) that are trying to eradicate the smudge on their town’s reputation have instituted a policy that anyone who isn’t a guest of the hotel but wants to enter must purchase a pass. This cuts down on a lot of the prostitution because many of the sex-seeking travelers do not want this kind of bother and extra expense and, therefore, stay elsewhere.
The Merengue Festival (for information contact the tourism office in Santo Domingo, tel. 809/221-4660, fax 809/682-3806, www.dominicana.com.do) is held the third week of July. A spillover of the same festival that takes place along Malecón in Santo Domingo, this street festival is a lively expression of the merengue music and dance particular to the Dominican Republic. Dancing, exhibitions, food, drink, and games all take place along the main street, Calle Duarte.
© Ana Chavier Caamaño from Moon Dominican Republic, 4th edition