Cigar Factory Tour
Dominican Republic Day Trip
Cigar factory tour in the Dominican Republic is one of the things to do on a DR holiday if you're ready for a day trip away from the beaches near Puerto Plata and Playa Dorada. Tours leave the resorts early, and head inland and up mountain towards Santiago and the pottery, then go on to the waterfalls near Santo Cerro. See also packing for a Dominican holiday.
Cigar Factory Tour Location near Santiago DR
Our tour group made a stop at this demonstration cigar factory. Tobacco is one of the main crops grown in this part of the Dominican Republic, and hand rolled cigars are a big seller.
This building, pictured, houses a cafe and bar, and restrooms.
With this morning's stormy weather, the cafe and restrooms were closed. We were all given a voucher for a glass of Presidente beer, but 10 a.m. is a little too early for me :-)
Factory Staff Demonstrate Hand Rolling Cigars near Santiago DR
The cigar factory demonstration is done in a spacious room filled with artefacts and memorabillia of the early days of the Dominican Republic.
There is also a climate controlled retail shop in a nicely appointed room adjacent to this 'factory' floor.
Usually, where there are tourists in the Dominican, smoking indoors is not allowed. Smoking is definitely not allowed in a factory filled with dry tobacco leaves.
Factory Worker Shows How to Hand Roll Cigars (Close Up)
This worker had a telling array of personal items at his station.And no, the cigar in his mouth was NOT lit. He was just using it as a pacifier :-)
Tobacco Drying in Demonstration Factory in SantiaAgo DR
In one part of the demonstration factory, tobacco leaves hung drying in sheets.
As well as tobacco, Santiago province crops include plantain, mangoes, papaya, avocadoes (some really large ones!), passion fruit, grapefruit and oranges.
Resort food is usually very fresh and tasty, featuring lots of local produce.
Hand Rolled Cigars at another Factory in Santiago DR
Pictured here is one of the workers at the cigar factory I toured on an earlier trip to the Dominican.
It was interesting to see the techniques used to hand roll cigars, and to admire the skills needed, but the hour-long stop at this factory was about 40 minutes too long, in my opinion.
Not much time is needed to buy a few boxes of various grades of hand rolled Dominican cigars, should you so choose, but watching someone roll and trim cigars is just not that engrossing an activity.
The new tour to the cigar factory in the top photos was shorter and so more interesting.
Factory Worker Trims Dominican Cigars by Hand ~ Shop or Watch
Wrapped, rolled and trimmed cigars -- that's about it.
There's a place to get coffee and a snack, though the newer demonstration factory tour, while modern and updated, is not as cosy.
Tours may stop at either one - it's the luck of the draw according to which tour you happen to take and which factory is available at that time.
Again, it depends on the tour and the weather.
In August, tours allow for time to swim at the waterfalls. January tours can be rainy and chilly.