Dominican Republic What is known for

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Fly direct to Puerto Plata (POP) from Miami (MIA) on American Eagle. aa.com

Stay oceanfront in one of El Magnifico's varied condos, the perfect jumping-off point for exploring the Dominican Republic. hotelmagnifico.com

Eat tandoori and goat curry at the Blue Moon Retreat Cabarete. bluemoonretreat.net

Find adventure with Get Wet tours. From Cabarete, Get Wet tours accesses the island interior for canyoneering and more, half-day to full-day. getwetadventure.com

Golf at one of the famed courses in La Romana. At the new course Punta Cana Resort and Club, the most memorable hole is No. 7, where an astonishing 21 pot bunkers guard a small elevated green.

Explore Lago Enriquillo, about 150 miles west of Santo Domingo, home to Isla Cabritos National Park and its healthy population of American crocodiles. You can see them from the lakeshore, but a better option is to reserve a boat at the park headquarters for the 30-minute ride to the island, where you'll find more crocs, plus iguanas and a visitors center. Afterward, cruise the western end of the lake, where pink flamingos flock in the shallow waters.

Windsurf in Cabarete. It's famous for windsurfing and also is a good place to try kiteboarding, in which a parasail-style kite provides the wind power -- and the lift, enabling good riders to cover 50 feet or more in a single wave-jump. Protected by a barrier reef, Cabarete's large bay is a perfect place for beginners; experienced board-sailors can head farther offshore to be pushed across deep water by the steady trade winds.