Updated: Oct 28, 2021
We have been answering a lot of questions on Social Media about what to pack for fathom Travel’s Dominican Republic Cruise!
So – I decided to write this post. Since it’s a different kind of cruise – one where travelers volunteer to do various things throughout the week, there are a few special things you will definitely want to have with you! By the way – if you are looking for something to do this summer – this is hands down the BEST last minute deal out there! See Pricing – Click the LOGO Image 🙂
1. Good Insect Repellent – is the number one priority, a MUST to avoid Zika Virus, even if you aren’t going out on any volunteer activities. I won’t let the fear of Zika prevent me from traveling but I do use logical precaution! Just prevent insect bites, with a reliable, high quality product – that’s ALL. I use this one for one simple reason – It Works! I might feel differently about this if I were child bearing age, but I’m not.
2. Long Pants – if you want…. I didn’t bring any, but Rob did. I didn’t wish I had either. Rob says that long pants were required, but obviously they weren’t enforcing it. Required for mosquitoes in the forest and to prevent concrete splatters at Concrete Floors. Architect Rob says it’s because cement has lime in it. Lots of it. And lime BURNS the skin on contact. Really can get in your eyes, that’s why they gave us the glasses. The people mixing HAD TO have long pants, as that’s where the splattering was. AND they had to wear the glasses. They did enforce it there. But only the STRONG YOUNG MEN were selected for mixing! Rob was even let off the hook. Although many people are recommending long pants – it is totally a personal preference. Here are some photos of the things we did…. Ask yourself “If I were to do that, would I want to do it in Shorts, or Long Pants” Then go ahead and answer yourself…. really it’s OK…. then pack whatever you said 🙂
3. Clothes that can get DIRTY – Well maybe…. We brought some grubbies, but they didn’t get very dirty. They did get sweaty! I mean unless you plan to sit around in the dirt – the likelihood of getting dirty is really quite minimal. I’ve been much dirtier than this after a day in Cabo! (and that’s all I’m going to say about it right Rob?)
This is Rob and I at the end of the Concrete Floor Activity. As you can see Rob is drenched in sweat – we both have dirty shoes…. but other than that…. not so bad! I even went shopping before returning to the ship.
4. Durable or Worn out, but Sturdy shoes – I do recommend some sturdy shoes. Most people will appreciate having them but they won’t appreciate the fact that they are all muddy when they have to pack to go home, so bring some shoes that are almost worn out, that you won’t mind throwing away. Mine had a tiny hole in the toe, so once they were all muddy I threw them away. If you are a little unique like me – and love to go barefoot… I will tell you that I regret not taking off my shoes in places like the forest. I could have connected with the earth and grounded myself in the reality of being there… it would have been beautiful – but I had my shoes on…. and wasn’t thinking about me. If you don’t want to throw your shoes away – bring an extra trash bag to put them in on the way home… you won’t even want to pack them next to your dirty clothes!
5. A Journal and a Pen – I didn’t have one all week…. and wished that I did! So between cruises while we were back in Miami – I asked a fellow traveler that was going out to a Walgreens if he would pick me up a journal! I knew for sure that I didn’t want to go all week in Cuba without a place to make notes. Looking back at my Cuba notes – here is my favorite one 🙂
Learn what is important to carry in Cuba HERE! I did purchase a hat in the Dominican Republic that I could not have lived without in Cuba! So carry the stuff in the post but WEAR a HAT!
6. Sunscreen – is not as important at you might think for this fathom cruise to the DR – unless you are fair skinned like me. Most of the activities that we did were shady – or even indoors. But I have a habit when I am in the Caribbean of putting Sunscreen EVERYWHERE before I even get dressed in the morning. In the case of this cruise, because of where we were and what we did – I didn’t need to reapply it all day, because I was actually not IN the sun that much. That’s a good thing because Sunscreen really isn’t good for you – all that chemical goes right into your blood stream! My well read daughter says that while Sunscreen blocks the burning rays it does NOT block the Skin Cancer rays….. hmmm…. she got me thinking! Being a ginger I could very easily be a Sunscreen addict! Instead I am now getting a nice base tan for natural protection and then not staying out too long.
We rode in a nice air-conditioned bus to and from each activity destination!
7. A lightweight bag – I say lightweight because I pack this bag in my suitcase to get to the cruise. And we all know how those luggage Nazis are at the airport. Just a pound overweight and you are paying extra! I really appreciated that my husband didn’t have to bring dress clothes at all on this cruise. It made our packing so easy to accomplish. He only brought that one pair of pants that I spoke of above. Usually I am packing, rearranging and repacking in order to get our two bags to weight exactly 50#s. This time we had room to spare! Hint Hint – Don’t bring formal wear, you wear shorts anywhere you want!
This one is just like my pink one in the picture above – it’s sturdy and washable!! I really like it – I have used it for a solid three weeks of rugged vacationing so far an it’s like brand new! After returning from my trip I washed it an put it back in my suitcase until next time!
8. Water Shoes – One of the most popular adventures near Amber Cove is the “Damajaqua Falls” ! You have to do it on your own, because it is not sold or organized by fathom, but you will want to be prepared. They do rent water shoes for $1 if you don’t bring any but they REQUIRE them in order to participate! Since we flew into Miami the day before we picked ours up there. Water Shoes were easy to find and only $10 at a souvenir shop in South Beach. I am not comfortable borrowing shoes to wear on my bare feet – – ewwwe… If you won’t have time to shop in Miami, and can’t find any in your town… or maybe YOU just don’t have time to run around you can get some online HERE. I had the type with the more sturdy sole, but in retrospect I would like to try it with a pair of the “barefoot types” I think it would help you get a good footing on the slippery rock that you climb up through the waterfall on!
I think I would like to try a pair of these…. (next time)
9. Ziplock Bags – yes of course! Throw in a half dozen extras! I use the smaller size to protect my electronics when I am going on a questionable excursion – one where my bag might get wet or if it looks like rain. I carry an extra as a place to put a wet swimsuit after using it. Some times I wet a washcloth, place it in a ziplock bag, toss it in my bag to wipe my brow later….. so refreshing after working up a sweat!
10. Trash Bags – Since I had packed a few trash bags, I used one to separate the damp and sweaty dirty clothes from my clean clothes on the way home… Confession: I always bring too much. But that’s ok because I like to have options. We went on our fathom Cruise right at the beginning and couldn’t get the info that I am publishing here – because no one knew what to expect yet!
Tip: If you are bringing your smart phone along, like who doesn’t?? Do yourself a favor and put it in a very durable case like an otterbox! Something that will prevent it from getting wet or damaged if dropped, as well as a secure place to carry it like the bag above. Carrying it in your pocket is like asking for trouble – next thing you know you will be dunking your hand into a toilet to retrieve it or trying to find someone to scuba dive for it or maybe you will invent your own phone horror story to tell……. We also have a pair of these – just in case!
If you ended up here while looking for info on how to pack for your Fathom Dominican Republic Cruise it is because Fathom isn’t telling you what to pack. They really aren’t fully letting on – exactly what to expect. I mean after all you are signing up for an adventure of sorts and if they told you everything ahead of time that would sort of take the element of surprise out of it!! The things we share here are not even in their FAQ’s because they want you to book through a Travel Agent. Travel Agents can help with so many things…. Because many of us have already done a fathom cruise and attended a training and we know the difference between this cruise and other cruises. We can give you GREAT advice, that you can depend on. Rob and I sailed on the fathom Adonia to the Dominican Republic and Cuba in May of 2016, we were among the first! It was a touching experience – – if you want to go give us a call or send us an email ( Rlbelles@cruisesinc.com ) we would really appreciate the opportunity to book it for you. If you have already booked we know you are in for the experience of a lifetime! Maybe you want to thank us for the info by buying from one of our affiliate links or just donating a couple bucks below 🙂 That way we can keep on posting useful stuff the moment we learn about it!
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