I am still in awe of the incredible tribe of women who joined us on our Women Only Dominican Republic Tropical Adventure in November. It was a week of firsts for much of our group: Surfing, White Water Rafting, Trapeze, Canyoning, and more!
Yet, I found the most memorable moments from the past week were the connections, the changes, the progress, the courage. It’s those fundamental shifts in being that effect the most impact.
In my Welcome Speech for every trip, I talk about how hard the Explorer Chick team works “back stage” to curate our trips and deliver a seamless experience for you. The back office tasks are the bones of Explorer Chick giving our company structure, a body. They are itineraries for a trip weaved with adventures and programming that are otherwise lifeless.
Then the Explorer Chicks arrive and these trips come to life. You are the blood, the heart, the soul of Explorer Chick. You give our brand life, feeling, and purpose.
Purpose. Worth repeating. I started Explorer Chick in 2014 with the purpose of connecting women through travel that fed our adventurous souls while pushing our boundaries. Yet, this purpose has quickly manifested itself into something greater. It is so much grander than me and my original plan. The purpose has transformed into providing a supportive community, a challenging itinerary, and an uncommon experience that can bring about change in each of our Explorer Chicks.
Whoa. What? When did this get all gushy and spiritual? Don’t worry. We remain the same adventure loving company. It has just become so unmistakably evident the impact we are having on our Explorer Chicks. There are tears, cheers, and beers (I couldn’t resist the triple rhyme!) The feedback we receive from our trips is moving, full of gratitude for the experience. The gratitude, the impact, the change, the transformative experiences are our purpose. You motivate us at Explorer Chick to keep at it. To spend the hours behind the screen sharing our story, your story, and how we’re bettering the world. You inspire us to push our limits. To expand our destinations (By quite frankly demanding certain destinations! Thank you!). To reach more women!
I continue to be humbled by the Explorer Chicks I get to guide on adventures. Each of you have found your way into my heart and make getting out of bed every morning easier. Thank you! Somehow this recap, took a turn down all the feels lane! But this trip just hit that sweet spot!
Okay, so what about the trip, Nicki?
IT WAS EPIC! The weather was on point. The Tribe had all the adventure loving vibes! There was so much love, support and kindness just juicing through our veins! We were a force in Cabarete and I think the town felt our energy! I know the staff misses our Explorer Chicks as much as I do! (It’s so quiet here now!).
I’m going to share highlights by way of pictures and quick captions for the review. (Instagram may have ruined reading for everyone any how😆).
Our first full day was dedicated to surfing. We woke early for breakfast and then headed to Encuentro Beach for lessons! First on land, and then in the ocean. There were lots of wipe outs, but also quite a few waves caught!
On Day 3, we “ran off with the Circus.” Explorer Chicks had the option to fly on the trapeze or learn the silks.
Canyoning! Day 4 was an early start boarding our Bachelorette Bus to the countryside. After sipping coffee grown and processed at base camp, we dressed in wet suits and hiked down to the river. The hike is an adventure in and of itself! We spent the next couple of hours leaping from waterfalls. Everyone made the big 30 foot jump despite some rocking the harness for an alternative rappel. This was our most challenging day, and I cannot be more proud of our Explorer Chicks for truly stepping out (and over) their comfort zones!
Day 5 was a much needed rest day and Raz’s birthday! We made our way to Taino Organic Farm that is the main food source for our restaurant. Robby led us on a farm tour explaining their aquaponics and truly sustainable farming practices. Afterwards, we grabbed inner tubes, Presidente’s, and rum. Robby also schooled Raz in how to pop a champagne bottle. We had to make a stop at the grocery before arriving at the farm, so Raz could pick up a bottle. Naturally, she chose the biggest bottle available!
We woke super duper early to raft in the mountains on Day 6. We chowed down on Dominican hot pockets and hot coffee on our way to Jarabacoa. Upon arrival we ate, again, (We hungry!), dressed in wetsuits, and boarded our open aired truck to the put in. We spent the next 2+ hours in 3 boats laughing, “Wooing,” and water fighting. Oh, yeah, and running the rapids! The highlight was the 12 foot Tyson Falls!
Our final couple days were pretty care free. Some of the Explorer Chicks opted for a mountain horseback ride, some enjoyed a massage overlooking the ocean, while others found time to enjoy the beach. On Friday night we enjoyed the Circus show performed by the Extreme Circus team. Afterwards, the hotel arranged a beach bonfire party for us. Holly from Extreme Circus performed a fire act and “fire shaved” a few brave Explorer Chicks! On Saturday night we shared our final dinner together high in the mountains with Indian-Caribbean Fusion food served Indian style. It was a first for most of us eating seated on cushions from banana leafs with our hands!
This little blip does no justice for the our trip to the Dominican Republic. We spent 8 days together overcoming fears, checking off firsts, dancing with the bar staff, laughing, crying, pushing ourselves, stepping outside comfort zones, growing, and the list goes on and on and on. This group of 10 Explorer Chick has been such an amazing tribe of badass women! I can honestly say I am leaving Cabarete changed. Thank you for everything Explorer Chicks!
~ Nicki Bruckmann,
Founder, Explorer Chick
See all of our adventures over on our Adventure page including upcoming Dominican Republic Tropical Adventure Dates!