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About Saona Dreams
With +20 years of experience as an incoming tour operator, The SaonaDreams Group is positioned as one of the main tour operator for the Dominican Republic relying on a staff available 365 days for assistance. Our goal turns around our customer satisfaction, providing them the opportunity to enjoy a vacation of a life time.
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Tours and Tickets by Saona Dreams
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Chloelouise wrote a review Nov 2019
1 contribution2 helpful votes
We were picked up from our hotel at 7:05am - we then traveled for around an hour to pick up people from an additional 2 hotels that appeared to be in the opposite direction to the Beach. I understand that it's a tour for many people, however, it does seem a little crazy to go completely out of the way to pick people up on the tour. After about 1hr15 of travelling, we were taken down a track to a building in case we needed to use 'the toilet'. When we arrived here, there was a man stood staring at us & smiling with a double barrel shotgun, clearly finding it amusing that we were intimidated. Honestly, if we weren't so far from our hotel & in the middle of no-where, I would have asked to leave the tour then & there, as I felt very uneasy - but we had no way of getting back to our hotel & I didn't fancy staying anywhere near the man with the gun. We were then all told to get off the bus & given colored stickers to distinguish us against the other tourist groups also dropped off there & encouraged to go spend money in the tourist shop - at this point, all we wanted to do was get to our excursion, especially after over an hour of travelling, however, we were left for 20 minutes to look round the shop. Finally, we were allowed to get back onto the mini bus & got back on route. After another hour of travelling, we finally got to Bahibe beach (around 9.15am) & were dropped off on the beach. Rodriguez, our tour guide, said we needed to wait 5 minutes & then we would be on our way - he then subsequently disappeared & could be seen eating his breakfast across the other side of the Beach with the other tour guides. We were all left in the direct sunlight standing up & were all being constantly harassed by the guys selling things on the Beach - there were a couple of elderly people also on the tour that could be seen struggling, however, none of us were offered refreshments, water, etc. At around 10am (45 minutes after waiting) we were bought closer to the sea, but other tour groups constantly kept leaving infront of us - however, we were all patient as they were all leaving on Speedboats & we had a catamaran booked so assumed that was causing the hold up. At 10.10am, we saw a couple asking Rodriguez where our Catamaran was... it was only at this point that he announced we would be 'getting the Catamaran later' & would now be getting on a speedboat - it took someone getting quite aggravated by the wait for him to finally communicate any details to us! After waiting for an hour on the Beach - we finally all got onto a Speedboat. The departure time when I booked said we would departure from Bahibe beach at 8am - so we are now 2hr10 minutes later than expected. We get onto the boat at 10.26am - over 1hr after arriving onto the Beach. We all get encouraged to take a seat on the Speedboat - we then travel for no more than 3-4 minutes (I can still very clearly see Bahibe beach) where we are told 'this is where we snorkel'! None of us could believe this was happening - we all actually could have swam to the snorkeling spot as it was so close & it made waiting over an hour crazy! Unfortunately, neither my boyfriend or I could partake in the snorkeling due to us not having our swim clothes on - we were told it was a Catamaran tour, so expected to have a place to get changed into our swim stuff. As it was a present for my boyfriends birthday we really tried to stay positive, so went to speak to Rodriguez, our tour guide, about getting a drink - it was an 'open bar' after all. We were told there was no refreshments on board & we would have to wait later for this. After around 30 mins, everyone gets back onto the boat & we make our way onto the next step of our tour - the natural pools. We realize again we will have no where to get changed, so end up having to put our swimming stuff on over our underwear & get into the water. As promised on the 'what to expect' part of our tour - we were promised a Cuba Libre, however, this was no where to be seen. When we finally went into the water, the Boat driver started offering drinks out... firstly, we had been told about 30 minutes earlier that there was no drinks? Now, the 'open bar' had been opened... although the only thing that was offered was Rum (with coke or lemonade) - as someone that doesn't like Rum, i couldn't partake in the open bar. After another 30 mins of spending time in the natural pools (we were held up here by the camera man taking photos of 2 girls) - we finally get back onto boat. At this point it's just past 11.30am & we still haven't read Soana Island, the Island we paid to see... at this point I made my annoyance clear & asked the photographer how long it would take to get there & how long we would have on the Island, he replied saying it was around another 30mins on the boat to the Island, but we would have 3 hours to enjoy the Island - we expected to be spending a lot longer there as the tour is described as a Day Trip to the Soana Island, however, at this point we were just happy to get off the boat. We finally arrived at Soana Island at 12.10pm (5hrs after our hotel pick up) & by the time the boat docked & we all managed to get off onto the Beach, it was around 12.30pm. At this point we were told that we all needed to meet back at the Beach in 2hrs?! 2hrs... we expected a full day tour, then was told we would have 3hrs & then this had been taken down to 2hrs. We had paid for the VIP experience which meant we had a VIP area with an open bar on the Beach, which no longer seemed worthwhile doing considering we only had 2hrs to spend there. We were led to our VIP area - which admittedly was beautiful. We appeared to be the only ones in there - but were later joined by a family of 4. We were led there by our photographer on the boat & were told that a bartender would come & bring us drinks shortly. We waited for around 30 mins for the bartender to arrive (now only 1hr30 left on the island) where he finally bought us our Champagne as promised & were told that lunch would be served shortly. At about 1.30pm a buffet was laid out for us that we could help ourselves too... I had to ask for the Lobster, which they had clearly forgotten to bring & they returned with this around 15 minutes later. After lunch we wanted to make the most of our last 45 mins in the VIP area, however, at this point, all the Tour Guides turned up, ate the remaining buffet & helped themselves to the Bar. This really took away the romantic part of the trip as they were talking, shouting, laughing loudly & took away from the area being the beautiful, peaceful area it should have been. Shortly after, the 4 entertainment dancers arrived on the Island, where they were wolf whistling people & making lots of noise. We chose to leave early & make our way back to the meeting point. We got back onto the speedboat at 2.30pm & were finally taken to the Catamaran we were promised at 2.40pm - nearly 8hrs after we were picked up from our hotel!!! We made our way onto the open deck & they came over with 1 drink of Beer & played some music. We enjoyed chilling out on the boat, however, were disappointed that we weren't offered another drink - my boyfriend actually went up at one stage to ask for another drink & it took him 10 minutes to find someone to open up the drinks. We were removed off the deck at 4.10pm, where we were told we had to wait in the seating area (a tiny area for the amount of people on the boat) until our speedboat picked us up - which they did at 4.20pm to take us back to shore. We had a total of 1hr30 enjoying the Catamaran - even though this is advertised a 'Catamaran Day Tour' - I actually got onto the speedboat in tears, as I felt I had completely let my boyfriend down with this as a birthday present & because of how poorly we had been treated for the whole day. Before getting onto the speedboat, a plastic tip bottle was shoved under our noses & a girl asked us for money... we explained that we had no money, but also really didn't feel that the service was worth a TIP. She was visibly annoyed & stormed off! Finally, we got back onto the Island for 4.30pm & were escorted straight to our mini bus. At this point a man got onto our bus & gave us all a bottle of rum with our photo on it, that had been taken at the beginning of the day. Both my boyfriend & I though this was a lovely touch & actually made us smile - that was until he demanded $15 for the bottle, where everyone handed it straight back to him & again, he stormed off unhappy that we hadn't purchased. We left Bahibe Beach & made for the long journey back to the hotel - they once again drove to the gift shop & did try to get us all back in their, however we all made it clear we weren't getting off the bus! We got back to our hotel around 7pm feeling devastated about the waste of a day, the waste of money & the treatment we had experienced throughout the day. I have contacted the Tour Company directly & have been ignored - I have contacted Viator who were not interested in dealing with the issue & didn't even ask me what my issue was, just that they Tour Company denied everything. DO NOT BOOK - I wasted money & was treated incredibly poorly the whole day.
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Date of experience: November 2019
2 Helpful votes
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VivaAQP wrote a review Nov 2019
Veytaux, Switzerland24 contributions13 helpful votes
Most companies sell this trip way overpriced, let alone hotels. I've seen up to USD 120 per person for this day trip. We paid less than USD 80 (4000 DOP) for the whole family (2 adults and 2 small children) by going to Bayahibe port directly and dealing with the first tout that appears. And this included the entry fee to the natural reserve (500 DOP per adult). The service is exactly the same, we got on one of the catamarans together with all the folks from the hotels in Bayahibe and Punta Cana. Of course this way you need to get to the port by your own means. Starting with a low price and haggling a bit in Spanish can get you a good deal. The trip itself is really nice. Even if you are staying in Punta Cana with its already nice beaches, Isla Saona has such a stunning beach you can only see on postcards. The catamaran is slow, it took us more than 3 hours, but it's fun with all the ambiance and drinks. Sometimes you can spot dolphins and flying fish if you're lucky. The trip back by speedboat is faster but there is a half an hour stop at Piscina Natural which is a nice sand bank out in the sea. All in all recommended if you get a good deal.
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3 Helpful votes
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Real B wrote a review Oct 2019
Parkland, Florida40 contributions12 helpful votes
We booked a day trip at the Sheraton Santo Domingo. We were told to show up in the Zona Colonial at 6:30am. The guide showed up at 7 am and we hopped on a bus. The bus was comfortable by not recent by any standard. We stopped on the way to pick some people and at a rest stop for 15 min. The travel agent told us breakfast was served on the bus but that was not the case. So not knowing this we did not buy food or water. Nothing was provided on the bus. We then proceeded to another stop to pick up more people. All said it took about 3 hours to get to where the boats for the island leave. All I can say is if you do not like crowds you should stay a away. Boarding was chaotic to say the least. It looked like a bus station with loads of people boarding the boats. We boarded what we thought was a fast boat only to be transferred on a catamaran. The boat was loaded with people and crying kids. No food just cheap rum with coke or sprite. Music and dancing on board made the ride somewhat fun. It took about 90 min to get to the island. Ok this was the best part as far as the trip. Very nice beach with nice water but again if you don’t like crowds you will not like this. By crowds I mean real crowds. The food line for the buffet was long and only chicken and some sort of fish and pasta was available. The drinks on the island are cheap rum no ice by the way with coke or sprite and beer. Then after 2:30 hours they rounded up the cattle for the trip back. We returned on the fast boat with a stop on an area with shallow water. We got back to the bus at around 5:45 pm. The bus ride back took 3:15 min with numerous stop. So all in all 6 1/2 hours for a 6 hours excursion. All in all it was nice to see the island but it makes for a very long day and I suggest you bring your own breakfast and snacks with water specially if you are going with kids. Probably would not do it again.
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1 Helpful vote
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Response from andre b, Director of Sales at Saona Dreams
Responded Oct 22, 2019
hola first of all remember that we are soana dreams so we are just responsable for the boat part and time in Saona the transfert and tour guide is the responsibility of yout tour operador we have vip excursion with private boat and premium witch is more what you were expecting from this excursion that the regular saona Regards
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AmandaNickel wrote a review Sep 2019
19 contributions28 helpful votes
It had rained a lot the days before our trip which is not conducive for visible snorkeling. Otherwise it was fantastic! They had rum and coke and beer with the open bar. There was dancing and music. It was relaxing and enjoyable.
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Date of experience: September 2019
2 Helpful votes
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Elisabete M wrote a review Jul 2019
3 contributions2 helpful votes
We booked our VIP Saona excursion from Punta Cana at our hotel with Amstar. It’s a full day but it was worth it, You start with a bus ride (about 1 h or less) to LaRomana where you board the catamaran, it was smooth sailing, its a long journey but the crew is great to keep you entertained with dance, drinks, and snacks, lots of fun. Our guide was Papa Raymond and he was so knowledgeable and nice, We had Evelyn leading our entertainment and she is a lot of fun and a fantastic dancer, trying to get everyone in the fun. We made 2 stops before arriving at Saona, one for snorkeling and one at the sand bar, Both were great, The island is beautiful! The blue of the water is unforgettable. We had a delicious lunch and then relaxed and swimmed at the beach. The return is on a speed boat which is great because by then you are already tired, Would highly recommend, Don’t forget the sunscreen !!!
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Date of experience: July 2019
2 Helpful votes
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