- 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
Jimaní is the most trafficked route to Haiti through an authorized crossing point. It is a sprawling town that was once even larger, until the rains and flooding of the 2004 hurricane season wiped out over 600 of its inhabitants. The empty shells of ruined homes still sit as a ghostly reminder on the way into town.
The only reason to visit Jimaní is to access the crossing point to Haiti, which has the market just behind the border gates in what is called Malpaso but is more commonly referred to as “no-man’s land.”
Crossing into Haiti, you’ll need to present your passport and pay US$10 for a Dominican departure tax, a US$10 Haitian entry fee, and a US$10 entry fee when you come back through. The immigration office is open 8 a.m.–6 p.m. At the market you’ll find household goods, pirated music and movies, clothing, and some random objects.
Accommodations and Food
The Hotel Jimaní (Calle 19 de Marzo 2, tel. 809/248-3139, US$25 d) is a decent place to get a night’s sleep and a meal. It’s not much on the outside, but this ugly duckling has rooms that are actually rather comfortable, with cable TV and a private bathroom (cold water). The restaurant serves all meals in a limited fashion, but it’s food. It’s not the Ritz, not even remotely, but if you’re in a pinch you don’t have much choice all the way out here, so you’re going to have to cowboy up and do this thing the southwestern way.
Getting to Jimaní
Caribe Tours has bus service that goes from Santo Domingo to Port-au-Prince and makes a stop in Jimaní. Otherwise, guaguas serve this area from Santo Domingo (US$9) every half hour to 45 minutes and from Barahona (US$4.25) every 45 minutes from the corner of 27 de Febrero and 19 de Marzo.
On your way from Jimaní to Neyba, it might be refreshing to jump into some ice-cold water. Las Varias Balneario in the town of La Descubierta has a nice river-fed swimming hole where they also have food and drink. It is popular with families. It is a nice break on what will most likely be a hot day of driving. There are bathrooms here, albeit nightmarish. If you can, wait until Neyba.
© Ana Chavier Caamaño from Moon Dominican Republic, 4th edition