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 Post subject: Cabarete, Dominican Republic
PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2002 10:11 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 10:12 pm
Posts: 475
Location: Minnetonka, MN
Here are my two cents re Cabarete - please feel free to edit as needed:
* Fantastic sandy beach - Very kid friendly - sleepy atmosphere.
* Food better than just about anywhere - Ex-patriots from France, Germany, Italy add to the already great Carribean cusine and very reasonably priced.
* Once you get there ($20 cab ride from Puerto Plata), you don't have to get into a cab for the rest of your stay if you don't want to.
* Gear rental is phenomenal - lessons available. My favorites were Club Nathalie Simon and Vela.
* Palm Beach Condos are right in the middle of the (main - good for windsurfing) beach - reasonable, and I think the nicest place to stay.
* BUT, the winds are iffy for windsurfing - typically 1 out of 3 or 4 days got above 12 kts when I've been there in late January / February.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 9:05 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 4:38 pm
Posts: 1142
Location: 44.9286, -93.60828
I went to Cabarete as a beginner kite boarder. I would say it was not the best place for a beginner. The main area "Kite Beach" is actually a couple of miles west of the main bay at Cabarete. Kite Beach is fairly crowded with beginners and local experts. In close to shore can be quite busy. The bottom also drops off rapidly. If you are experienced I would say Cabarete is awesome. There is plenty of room if you can stay upwind and there is wave sailing if you go out by the reef. The "scene" at kite beach is really great. The night life & food at Cabarete is second to none. You can live like a king for next to nothing in Cabarete, with food & beer being very cheap. There are restaurants run by expatriots from all over the world, particularly western Europe, with great food. You can stay at a couple of hotels right on Kite Beach but you will be a couple of miles from the main action in downtown Cabarete which is very lively at night. So you have to decide if you want to stay at Kite Beach or Cabarete. It's kind of a toss up. There are taxis "moto gouchos" that can provide transportation for relatively cheap if you don't have a vehicle to get back & forth.

I stayed right at kite beach and would go into Cabarete at night for dinner. I rented my equipment from Dare 2 Fly/Vela. Rental prices were very reasonable if you don't want to bring or don't have your own equipment. There is a new Kite School/Hotel based in Cabarete. Laurel Eastman Kiteboarding. The kiting in the bay is supposed to be less desirable until you get out aways. This is the original bay where windsurfing became popular in the 80's & 90's and has great wave sailing, but has a bit of a wind shadow in closer to shore, and a bit of a shore break also.

For some other activities try Iguana Mamas for Mountain biking, Canyoning, Cascading, Hiking, Horseback riding. The 27 Waterfalls of Damajagua Cascading Hike is incredible, if you do one thing other than kiteing, do this! Overall Cabaret is a great place for a kite vacation, if not only for the kiteing, but because of all the other things it offers, like great food, people, and other sports activities.

One other point: Some people say the days of good wind in Cabarete is overhyped, and no/low wind days are more frequent than advertised. I only had good wind 50% of the days I was there, in March. I would check around for other opinions or maybe post on Kiteforum.com. & see what others have experienced.

Links:

Start with this top one first.
http://www.cabaretekiteboarding.com/

http://www.kitexcite.com/kitesurfing-sc ... xcite.html
http://www.activecabarete.com/
http://www.cabaretesurfcamp.com/en/index.html
http://www.hispaniola.com/Cabarete/index.html
http://dr1.com/travel/cabarete/
http://www.iguanamama.com/
http://www.velacabarete.com/kiteboardin ... rding.html
http://www.kitebeachhotel.com/start.htm
http://www.cabaretecondos.com/
http://www.laureleastman.com/


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 Post subject: CABARETE
PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2005 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2002 1:25 am
Posts: 120
Location: Shoreview, MN
This is a great site to check out the current wind and wave conditions in Cabarete.

http://www.windsofcabarete.com

It also gives the most accurate forcast for this great destination. Maybe it is just good luck but the 3 times I have traveled to DR the wind and conditions have been great. This year (2005) has not been great for wind but we only had 1 no wind day on our windsurfing trip in late Feb. Azzuro Club Cabarete was the best place for us to stay with young kids. I have not started to kite yet but when I do Cabarete looks great. I have never seen so many kites, not even in Maui. From the talk about kite safety on LAKAWA you guys would be amazed at the lack of safety in Cabarete. It looks like an accident waiting to happen. If you walk down the beach just past the last windsurfing shop you will be ducking or jumping over lots of kite lines. I never made it as far as "kite beach" where most of the kiters are. The kiters ride up the sandy beach as far as the water comes in and take back off through the shore break dodging kids and families in the water playing and boogyboarding in the waves. All the kiters I saw looked very good, some looked only 10-12 years old, but as kiting keeps on growing in Cabarete they are going to have to do something to keep it safe for the people on the beach.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2005 9:10 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2003 3:34 pm
Posts: 56
I got back from a kiteboarding trip in Cabarete. Here's all I got to say... IKO is a joke. They are based out of Cabarete, all the schools on the beach are IKO certified, and the place is way too dangerous. Too many people flying kites on the beach, locals riding along the beach showing off way too much. Lessons are given right on the beach (not a single jet ski lesson from any of the schools). Never in my kiteboarding experience (~4 years) have I seen such reckless disregard of common sense rules that most other kiteboarding destinations have established (including here in Mpls). I would recommend avoiding Cabarete. The conditions are just not good enough to make up for everything else.

But, on the otherhand, if you want to go to the DR (consider someplace else), try Las Teranas on the Northern Coast of the Samana peninsula. Less crowded, beautiful town, Bruno Legaignoux lives here and kites here regularily, beautiful, beautiful beaches. Still, you're better off going elsewhere.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2005 5:36 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 12:41 pm
Posts: 26
i was in caberete for two weeks a few years ago at the end of february and beginning of march. two weeks went by and i didn't even get on the water with a sail. the wind was very light and unpredictable. also, a friend of mine from haiku, maui went there in april for two weeks. the same result. caberete is a beautiful town on a very nice tropical island but as far as the wind goes i would not bank on it. i've heard several stories of people getting skunked in caberete. it's alot cheaper than other tropical vacations but two weeks with no wind and others experiencing the same i think i'll spend a few more bucks and go somewhere that is more reliable that time of year


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2007 7:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 11:44 pm
Posts: 342
Location: U of M
in the summer the wind is amazing. blows almost every day. cabarete is amazing. AMAZING.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2007 2:30 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2007 8:40 pm
Posts: 39
Location: MN USA
I'd give Cabarete a solid 4 out of 5.

I learned to kite at the Laura Eastman kite-school last x-mas and found them to be well organized, staffed and stocked. We stayed 2 weeks (leaving just after new-years) and had good wind almost every day for at least a few hours. We were told that the winter winds were low and that we were catching the end of the steady weather until it blows again in the late spring and hard all summer. From reading the reviews here it sounds like the best time to go (from a Minnesota point of view) doesn't overlap with the best time to kite there (from a wind point of view). In other words, consider going early in the winter or if you're serious - in the summer.

Although last year the beach was greatly expanded (barged in sand and increased the depth of the beach and rigging areas significantly over pre-2006) the beach is still conflicted. Vacationers staying at resorts and condos lay out in lounge chairs among the numerous schools and solo kiters along the beach. If it were a kite-only beach it would be a dream. If it were a swim only beach - it would be a dream. However, while I was there, the two were precariously intermingled - sometimes literally.

That said, the water, swell, temperatures, sun, kite-scene, bar-scene, cost and access to nature was incredible. Really incredible.

I would do my research and head back in a heartbeat.


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