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Motorcycle trips

Fact File

Watching the experts: Motocross competitions are held at a circuit in the northern town of Moca, 'La Parada' near Puerto Plata, and near Santo Domingo at the 'Pista el Rio' on the east bank of Rio Ozama at Sabana Perdida.

Where and when: Organized motorcycle trips will usually do a loop of the country, traversing the northern and central mountains and arriving back on either the north or south coast. Of course, you also have the option of renting a bike and exploring at your own pace. Head for the mountain areas for the best off-road conditions. A trip along the Haitian border is one of country's most challenging motorcycle adventures, and it is not for the novice rider. Note that for safety reasons you should never ride alone. Motorcycling in the Dominican Republic is an all-year-round activity, although it is obviously more dangerous in wet conditions.

Equipment: The standard motorbike for hire is a Yamaha DT 125cc Enduro. This machine is perfectly adequate for touring the country along paved roads, and will not let you down in most off-road conditions. A good helmet is the most vital accessory. Try to get one which fits snuggly and covers the whole face. In the absence of a visor on the helmet, goggles (preferably with UV protection) will also be required. Gloves will help to protect hands from the effects of continually vibrating handlebars, and shoes (the harder the better) should be worn in preference to sandals and flip-flops. A first-aid kit is also a good idea. Make sure that it contains plaster, bandages, and a good drying antiseptic such as iodine or potassium permanganate. Although it might not be all that practical if you are a tourist and only visiting the country for a short time, but a cellular phone could be invaluable in a dire emergency.

Other Motor Files:
Article: The Dominican Evil Knevil
Pano: Motocross competition near Moca

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