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What is La Ruta de las Casas Típicas?

La Ruta de las Casas Típicas (“Route of rustic houses“) is a touristic circuit whose main objective is to exhibit and preserve the local architectural and cultural heritage of communities in the Dominican Republic.

The first route was created in Las Galeras, Samaná in 2022 and shall be duplicated in other parts of the country where economic developement endangers the local identity and cultural heritage. So if you ask what to do in Las Galeras, this is another option among many in the Samaná peninsula.

Promoting and encouraging local sustainable tourism

This project shall benefit and help locals maintaining their former family house for posterity as well as they get to live in more modern houses.

La Ruta de las Casas Típicas consists of a route of about 28 miles (45 kilometers) starting at the “last typical house” on the main street of Las Galeras that will take you to the famous and beautiful Playa Rincón where you will propably take a pause for a delicious local lunch and enjoy fresh “El Caño frío” river before swimming in the beautiful turquoise waters of the eastern side of this 3 miles long beach.

The tour can be done in your own private vehicle, or in a small group, aboard an authentic Galerense “guagua” (traditional pick-up public transportation).

La Ruta de las Casas Típicas has about 40 participating houses visible from the street (or a few steps from the street).
They are identified with their sign, you can photograph them and sometimes visit them, with the agreement of their owners.

Logo Ruta de las casas tipicas dominicana
Logo of La Ruta de las Casas Tipicas in the Dominican Republic

Most houses are simple family houses. Some are offering snacks and drinks, local fruits and vegetables local souvenirs or handcrafted products, food or small grocery. This will be a good opportunity to find out about the smile and kindness of the Dominicans. You can even enjoy a unique experience of sleeping and living with a local family!

Identify the houses along the Route by their wooden signs made by local artisans.

How and why was La Ruta de las Casas Típicas created?

Find out more about La Ruta de las Casas Típicas

What is the itinerary of the Route of the Typical Houses?

Click here to see our interactive map of La Ruta de las Casas Típicas.

You can also purchase a paper version that you can keep as a souvenir at the “House #1” of the Route and/or download a digital free copy here.

The whole tour takes about 1/2 day (3 to 4 hours including a few stops for photos or buying snacks or souvenirs), but we recommend the complete day tour, which will give you about 3 hours to fully enjoy Playa Rincón. There, you will be able to have a delicious typical lunch, swim in the fresh waters of “Cano Frío” river, and enjoy the quiet turquoise waters of the eastern part of the beach.

How do I go through La Ruta de las Casas Tipicas?

You can do the tour in your private vehicle, or aboard an authentic local bus with a local guide who will provide with lots of information about the history of Las Galeras and its typical houses. A beautiful journey where you fully enjoy the scenery without having to focus on the road!

How to contact La Ruta de las Casas Típicas?

Would you like to support this project or get further information ?
Use the contact form here

Follow La Ruta de las Casas Típicas on Instagram

Participate in voting for your favourite house during the annual contest!

Support this project

Introduction to La Ruta de las Casas Típicas

The first La Ruta de las Casas Típicas (Route of rustic houses) is located in the municipality of Las Galeras, in the Samaná Peninsula, in the northeast of the Dominican Republic.

Las Galeras and its dream beaches

The village of Las Galeras is known for its beautiful secluded white sand beaches, its coconut trees and translucent waters. Hundreds of humpback whales head from Canada to reproduce in its warm waters every year between January and March.

Among our dream beaches, Playa Rincón is an impressive 3 miles (5 kilometers) long beach lined with coconut trees, Playa Frontón and its black cliff that overhangs it, is only accessible by boat or on foot. Playa Colorada and its cinnamon-colored sand are ones of the most beautiful beaches in the country, if not in the world.

Las Galeras from its countryside

However, beyond the dream beaches, the whale watching season and the luxuriant landscapes, the roads of Las Galeras cross a quantity of picturesque hamlets that you should not miss. They are the best way to discover the heart of the Dominican Republic, the smile and warmth of its inhabitants, its rural life and its typical and colorful wooden houses.

If you take the time to travel these roads, you will fall in love with its small mountains, its red dirt roads and its impressive panoramic views.

Away from the main road, this bucolic route will allow you to contemplate the small colored houses that symbolize for some their childhood memories and for others that of a time when life was simpler and more connected to nature.

You will see the locals smiling and waving, the children coming home from school in their pretty uniforms, the women hanging out the laundry or shelling the “guandules” (a kind of pea) for dinner.

Tourism has brought economic progress to Las Galeras; thanks to your support to the locals, rather than erasing a past they are sometimes ashamed of, they will now be able to preserve, next to their new homes, their typical houses that give the village its charm, its soul and its identity.

Taste a freshly brewed coffee, eat a delicious dish prepared with love, buy some souvenirs or local handicrafts, live the experience of sleeping in a typical house are values that La Ruta de las Casas Típicas wants to maintain for a sustainable and reasoned tourism.

Your visit is a real support to the community that will leave you with unforgettable memories. It also helps local owners value their typical houses and be able to show them to their grandchildren and visitors from all over the world in the future.

Discover the interactive map of La Ruta de las Casas Típicas.

Book a Tour

A picturesque and cultural excursion to do alone or in a group

Go in a small group -up to 10 people- aboard an authentic local “guagua” (public transportation) to the sound of some of the best Dominican bachatas!

Book this tour with your friends, your family, your partner or alone; you will spend an unforgettable day in the magnificient landscapes of the Samaná peninsula.

Along the journey aboard the typical guagua, a local guide from Las Galeras will tell you about the history of the village and about the way of life of the locals.

Full day Tour

Departure at 9:30 am from the main street, at the level of the old guagua stop which has been preserved. The route lasts approximately 6 hours and includes a typical lunch in Playa Rincón with time to enjoy this stunning beach.

During the tour you will be able to see the rustic houses at a leisurely pace and you will have around 5 photo stops (the stops change depending on the days of week in order to benefit all locals).

You can take advantage of the visit to buy local specialties or local handicrafts such as coconut bread, coffee and cocoa, clothes and objects made from coconuts, calabashes and “iron wood”. “…among others.

The guide will tell you about the history of Las Galeras and its surroundings, and you can listen to some of the most famous bachatas.

At noon, you will enjoy the beautiful Playa Rincón, its river “Caño Frío“, and a delicious local lunch will be waiting for you at the community restaurant facing the sea.

On the way back, you can make 3 more stops, to arrive in the center of Las Galeras around 3 p.m. and enjoy the late afternoon.

FEES

Full excursion fee (with lunch included at Playa Rincón)

1600 dominican pesos per adult, 1100 pesos for children under 15 years old

Excursion fee (lunch not included)

1000 dominican pesos per adult, 500 pesos for children under 15

*The typical bus tour is not recommended for children under 6 years old.

Option with a professional photographer

A professional photographer will accompany your group to take the best photos along the route. The which will be delivered to you (in digital format) at the end of the visit.

In addition to a beautiful memory, you will now have beautiful photos ready to be shared on your social networks with your friends and family!

What to bring?

Sunscreen, hat, sunglasses, bathing suit, towel, cash for personal expenses (local stores don’t usually accept credit cards).

Annual Contest

Every year, the Ruta de las Casas Típicas competition is held to select the 3 most beautiful houses along the route.

DATES FOR THE CONTEST – 2022
from october 1st till 31st

For one month, our followers will be able to vote for their favorite tipical house on the Instagram account of La Ruta de las Casas Típicas.

In parallel to the public vote, a jury composed of famous architects in Dominican will design THE house that deserves the Jury’s honors.

José Enrique Delmonte Soñé is the editor of the “Guía de Arquitectura de Santo Domingo” and the book “60 años edificados, memorias para la construcción de la nación“. He is also co-author of the book “Historias para la construcción de la arquitectura dominicana“.

Victor Manuel Durán Nuñez is the author of Arquitectura Popular Dominicana” y “Artesanía Dominicana, un arte popular (click on the titles to buy them now).

Votes

The Public’s choice

The photos of the 3 houses with the most “likes” at the end of the contest (October 31 at 5pm) will be designated as the “Most Beautiful Typical Houses” of Route 2022 from the public’s choice.

The Professional Jury’s choice

On October 31, the Professional Jury will designate the house that will receive the “Honor of the Jury” mention for the current year.

Awards

Public’s Award

The 3 houses awarded by the public will receive a series of products from our sponsors to keep their typical house in the best conditions.
Paint, wood, nails, zinc among others, as well as a substantial help in labor by artisans dedicated to popular architecture.

Professional Jury ‘s award

The house awarded by the profesionnal jury with the mention of “Honor” will receive a gift from our sponsors to improve their daily lives and reward their dedication to preserve the Dominican architectural heritage.

See the rules of the contest’s

Map of the Route

Interactive Map of La Ruta de las Casas Típicas (Route of rustic houses)

Click on the map to see the tour and locations of the typical houses.

Download map in digital version.