Monte Cristi is 135 km west of Puerto Plata. in desert-like setting on the northwestern tip of the Dominican Republic. The 25,000inhabitants make their living from farming, fishing and the salt flats to the north. This undiscovered gem is a Victorian-style town. This is where theprogram for indenendence from Cuba, know as the Manifiesto de Monte Cristi (Monte Cristi
Manifesto) was drafted. There are two fantastic beaches Cayo Cabrita and El Morro, a big National park, good shipwreck diving amongst colonial-era galleons, world class kiteboarding and surfing.
Parque National Monte Cristi
Parque Nacional Monte Cristi covers an area of 550 sq. km, extending from the Haitian border to Punta Rucia. Within its boundaries lie offshore keys, mangrove swamps, lagoons, and a 237-meter limestone natural rock sculpture known as El Morro, the sleeping dromedary. There are over 160 species of birds and over 10 species of reptiles that occupy the park, .including the Dominican alcatraz and pelicans. El Morro’s
northern slope and ridge is covered by subtropical dry forest. From Playa ElMorro, you can swim the 300 meters out to Isla Cabrita, an island with a lighthouse and great beach. There is no escaping the huge “El Morro” next to the small island named Pablillo. It’s semi-circular and has fantastic surf, for the most part.
You can surf and kiteboard here at numerous beaches.. You will note that the sand is golden because of the mix from the rock,
and most of it is from the nearby mountain. The beach here has a special hue and the sand is hard packed.
Do you want to surf? It can get rough here and there is a significant drop off, so be prepared. There are some rocks in the water as well.
Always be sure to kite with a partner, as it can get rough here.
Further out are the The Cayos Siete Hermanos (Seven Brothers’ Keys) a few kilometers off the coast. There are many reefs around these small, sandy islands, but no vegetation. Sea turtles where large sea turtles lay their eggs.
Kiteboarding places in Monti Christi
Playa Popa: From Monte Cristi drive to the NE/E and find your way to Playa Popa on dirt roads. About 20km from Monte Cristi. 1 km long, sandy beach. Not very wide, but enough space to safely launch kites. Bushes along the beach. No people around. Beautiful, clear flat to choppy water. Some reefs about 1.3 km away from the beach, where waves break on days with more swell.
Los 7 hermanos: Hire a fisherman to take you by a boat to one of the 7 islands to take you out kiteboarding in one of the most amazing kitesurfing locations in the world. Alternatively, start at El Morro
DIRECTIONS TO MONTE CRISTI: best to go with a local, but basically head west via Imbert to Navarette, turn right and west again on Route 1 (Autopisat Duarte) to Monte Cristi.
Directions to El Morro: Go through Monte Cristi and head north on Ave San Fernando to Playa Monte Cristi .. follow for a stretch, then turn right for the sign to La Granja all the way to the spot
Directions to Playa Popa: From Monte Cristi drive to the NE/E and find your way to Playa Popa on dirt roads. About 20km from Monte Cristi.
The wind season is February – October
For the wind forecast in Monte Cristi click here . It will also give you a map of the area