As you’d expect amongst such dazzling scenery, the Constanza valley boasts several of the DR’s finest hiking trails. One 3hr trip sets off from Rancho Constanza in Colonia Kennedy, which is just east of the main town. From the hotel, take the dirt road north until you reach a white house at the top of the hill, the starting point of a trail that leads into the thick of the alpine forest. You can also set off 5km east of Constanza, via the Carretera Constanza, to the adjoining valley of Tireo Arriba, which holds a smaller farming pueblo worth exploring for a look at the local way of life. If you have your own transport, keep going 8km further east to pueblo La Parma – just before you reach the road to Jarabacoa – for a hike along the Río Arroyazo. Ask locals to direct you to the riverside walking path, from which it’s a 45min hike to an unspoiled wilderness balneario, with small cascades along the river giving way to a large pool partially enclosed by boulders.

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Video: 14 things we love about the Dominican Republic

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