Going to the Dominican Republic, anything I should know?

In a couple of months I will be going on holiday to the Dominican Republic, is there anything in particular that I should know or read up on before I go? There are obvious things such as preparing for the weather and mosquitoes but I am wondering if there is anything I should know about local customs that could land me in hot water. I would rather not live up to the ‘ignorant foreigner’ stereotype if at all possible (perhaps I am hoping for too much!!).

It’s been awhile since I was there, so my info may be obsolete. We stayed at a small resort between the Puerto Plata airport and town. They turned the power off at night! Don’t eat any seafood that was prepared hours ahead of time (like a buffet), I got deathly ill there. The people were fantastic, big smiles all the time. Be sure to buy some art there, even small postcards are intricately painted and make nice gifts. The amber is supposedly world-class, I’m not sure about gems so you might want to read up on that. Just try to kick back, do some sightseeing, ride a bike, swim in the ocean. Have a great trip!

I was there last month and had a good time. I found useful information online in the following places:

www.debbiesdominicantravel.com/

www.cdc.gov/travel/caribean.htm

www.dr1.com

Also, here’s a related thread, where some gave me good advice (the books were great, BTW, Martha): http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=347973&highlight=dominican+republic

Ther first two are travel sites, both with lots of resort reviews and tips. The first one also has more general DR information, as does the fourth. The second and fourth include message boards devoted to DR issues. The third link shows cuurent CDC health warnings, including a malaria warning for certain DR provinces, including the one that includes Punta Cana.

Correction: the message boards are part of the first and fourth links.

Random, I’m pleased that you found the advice helpful and liked the books. I hope you had a great time in the DR.

mittu, this link contains the sort of information you’re looking for - click on Dominican Republic - in addition to the websites mentioned in Random’s post. The forums have threads on DR dos and don’ts, what offends Dominicans, and much more.