It seemed like it would be simple enough to hop in the truck and check out the new highway they are carving across the hilltops between Rio San Juan on the North Coast and San Francisco de Macoris in the central region. After all, how difficult can it be. Well believe it or not, it took three different trips over the unpaved mountain highway before we finally made it to the end. In our first trip we were faced with rougher roads than we expected and the expected unexpected heavy rains. Next trip a week or so later went well enough until we hit some heavy construction and delays. Finally, on our third attempt we made it. It is amazing to see how much progress these road crews can make every week or so. The new highway is shaping up to be a breathtaking highway once it is paved which I am confident will open new mountain areas to rival Jarabacoa and Constanza.
Along the way, we noticed steady growth in the number of little turnoffs and access roads. It is evident that some of the well positioned local families and investors are already grabbing up some of the more scenic property along the new highway. We even pulled off onto a few of these little side roads and discovered what will become some wonderful homes or bed and breakfast establishments with stunning mountain and valley views. Some of the open views back to Rio San Juan are over 60 miles of unobstructed views.
In this video, we continue our trip over more mountain ridges to check out the highway construction a little closer to San Francisco de Macoris. Finally, running out of daylight, we turn around and head back to Cabrera after crossing one of the larger rivers in the region.
I know they are building roads and highways all the time where you live too, and perhaps you wonder why I get so worked up about a new highway like the one from Rio San Juan to San Francisco de Macoris. Maybe it is because I have experienced first hand how far this island nation has come in the last decade. When I first arrived, I have to admit that many of the roads on the North Coast were in awful shape. Huge, dangerous pot holes were the norm. You could expect to spend 4 or 5 hair-raising hours on congested roads just to get from Cabrera to Santo Domingo or Santiago or San Francisco de Macoris.
This new highway finally opens the third of the Dominican Republic’s major cities up to an easy commute from Cabrera.
Maybe even better than easy access, the new highway opens up some pretty dramatic real estate for the tourists and locals to enjoy. I can easily imagine a day not too far in the future where this newly opened mountain region will offer many of the amenities found in Jarabacoa and Constanza. I am looking forward to another easy escape into the mountains for our own day trips and vacations.