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Review of Swell Surf Camp

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Swell Surf Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 26, 2011

My girlfriends and I went to Swell to for a week of relaxation and also to learn to surf. We had an amazing time there and I can't imagine another surf camp beating the experience we had at Swell.

The hotel is located a 5 minute walk from the beach. The beach is public and lined by small hotels and restaurants that turn into clubs/bars at night. We would often walk to the beach to go swimming and then hang out under a palm tree - all free of charge. The town of Cabarete itself is very friendly - we met lots of locals and expats during the short time we were there. I felt very safe walking in the town and the nightlife is fantastic - very casual and fun.

We stayed in the dorms, which was effectively a private room for us since there are only 4 beds in it. The rooms were cleaned every day and very comfortable. We surfed 5 days and all 3 of us were able to ride the white-water by the second day.

The experience at Swell was great. By hanging out in the common area, I met lots of new people. I have highly recommended this place to a friend who is traveling solo and looking to surf. We hope to return in a year for another amazing week!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with friends
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2  Thank canadariogirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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198 - 204 of 238 reviews

Reviewed February 28, 2011

Swell is a truly great surf camp. The staff, the camp, the amenities, everything here is a great experience. Very fun people, extremely well run, they make you feel like family from before you even arrive. Feels more like going to stay with a great friend even if you travel alone. The surf was great, food was amazing, and the atmosphere beyond awesome. Great place to surf, kite, paddle, chill, relax, eat, and laugh. Will be returning for sure!

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank BuffaloSurf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 27, 2011

This was our first time surfing and I couldn't imagine how any other place could do it better than Swell. From the time you arrived to the time you leave you feel as though you are a part of a family there. After the morning surf it is nice to come back to camp and relax with the other guests and or have the staff plan some other excursion around the DR. The dinner and breakfast at Swell is the best in town and what a great way to share your days experiences with the everyone around the big table. We will be back for sure.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank skotsp98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 4, 2011

This was my first trip to the Domincan Republic, but was not my first surf camp experience. After experiencing a couple of really great surf camps in other countries, my expectations were pretty high for Swell, and they did not let me down. As a solo traveller for 2 weeks, I was a bit concerned about being bored and meeting other people, but within 2 minutes of arriving, my worries were erased. The crew staying there invited my out for supper before I could even unpack, and filled me in on all that Cabarete had to offer right away. During my first week, the camp was pretty quiet with only 4 or 5 guests there (quite a few left as I arrived), but this actually turned out to be fantastic. The instructors were able to give me awesome lessons as i was the only one taking lessons for the week, and it also gave me time to relax and let the warm weather and sun set in for me. The staff makes the place really feel like a home. I ended up spending a great deal of time with one of the instructors, Luciano, who really made my trip fantastic...great guy! JP and Martha are also very good instructors, and really make you feel welcome. Jim and Claire have done a very, very good job with this surf camp, and are also very down to earth people. It's rare these days to go on vacation and feel like people genuinely care that you are having a great time. Because Swell is a reasonably small hotel, you don't feel lost or alone at all. I knew from the moment i arrived that it was going to be difficult to leave, and it was. Swell does a first class job of exactly what they are trying to do....help people have a great, active surf vacation!

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled solo
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3  Thank fatjones58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 3, 2011

I had a great time at Swell. The staff is great and the people staying at the hotel are really cool too. a great place for single, active, travelers. you will make lots of friends here. really enjoyed the 7am wake up calls to go surf. also enjoyed having nothing to do in the afternoons. it seems like its always someone's last day at swell. but it usually means its someone elses first day. the walk to town is super close but if you prefer the moto guys can give you a lift. nightlife can be hit or miss. lots of bars but not always alot happening. claire and jim really have a nice place here. and nothing beats having a surf camp dog (shout out to Fonzi). I will be back for sure to do kitesurfing.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled solo
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2  Thank willzskillz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2011

Out of all the places I have visited over the years, Swell made me feel like I was coming home instead of arriving for a vacation.
The staff are great and well diverse. I really can't put into words how much attention to detail Jim and Clare have put into the place. You just do not get this kind of experience at an All Inclusive. Wish I would have went sooner. I'll plan on going back again soon. : )

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Encuentro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2011

This was my first trip to the Dominican Republic to go surfing although I have been surfing for many years. Swell is a very clean and well organized operation. The people working there are very friendly and helpful. The rooms are clean and simple and the breakfast there is excellent. It is a perfect place to go to learn how to surf but the break there is also good for more experienced surfers. It is great that you are walking distance to the town of Cabarete since there are excellent restaurants right on the beach.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled with friends
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2  Thank GRsurf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Swell Surf Camp

Address: Calle Las Palmeras, Cabarete, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Cabarete
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 48 Specialty Lodging in Cabarete
Price Range: $40 - $100 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Swell is a brand new purpose built hotel for surfers in the center of Cabarete. All rooms have en-suites with AC optional. Swimming pool with LED and fibre optic lighting and a large communal area with pool table, fussball and ping ping table as well as a video library and other games.We cater for active people that want quality accommodation in a social setting. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Swell Surf Camp Hotel Cabarete

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