At a Glance:
Lodged in the secluded Valle Nuevo National Parc, Villa Pajon is an oasis of freshness in every sense of the word.
It’s an adorable little off-grid eco lodge, with the most endearing deco, way far in the middle of nowhere, in a country known for its beaches, but where the temperature can, and has, dropped below freezing at times.
The average temperatures here run between a low of about 8℃ (46℉) and highs in the 20s ℃ (upper 60s to 70s℉)
Heating at night comes from lighting up the chimney, or snuggling in under the layers of blankets. There’s no central heating.
A Vacation from your Vacation
Yes, those who travel to the tropics usually do it for the sun, and the ocean, and the spice, the sazón!
But sometimes, an overload of all of that can start grinding the gears, and one can become tired of the sweltering heat, or have had enough of the commotion of the traffic, or have heard enough merengue for the rest of one’s life…
For those moments, this is your escape. In fact, the high grounds of the DR, the Dominican Alps, as some call them, are a huge hit amongst local Dominican vacationers.
It’s a cheerful clearing in the pine forrest with immaculate landscaping and little cabins built with care.
When you enter the cabins you’ll be greeted with a homey living room/dining room area with a fire place.
The view form the kitchen sink is calm and soothing.
And the kitchen is fully stocked with everything you need to make a meal.
You do have to bring your own food. There is no restaurant on the grounds, and just a ‘Colmado’ down the road for the few bits and pieces you might be missing.
We had come empty handed, having stumbled upon this place by complete accident, but so we could stay the night, the staff was gracious enough to provide us with some eggs, celery root, and potatoes right from the garden, and so we made ourselves a delicious and nutritious meal.
The bathroom comes complete with hot water, which is a definite bonus up here in the chilly air.
I counted 6 fleece blankets between the flannel sheets and the down comforter, and no, it wasn’t too much.
Remember there is no central heating in these cabins, no heating at all besides the fire place in the living room, so when the overnight temperature drops in the middle of the night… brrrr!
The nest of layers that is the bed is just right.
Also there is no electricity here. The stove is propane, so is the water heater, and so is the lighting.
Gabriel had a fever from the Chikunguya while we were here, so we took full advantage of the fireplace and made ourselves some tea as well.
NOTE* the firewood is not included in the price of the room and you cannot bring or collect your own.
You purchase it from a staff member on the grounds who’s job it is to collect firewood sustainably.
Eco-lodge and Potato Farm.
Villa Pajon works hard to make as small a footprint on the environment as possible, and works in close conjunction with the very poor neighboring communities, teaching them land conservation and how to responsibly use mother nature to make a buck.
Leading by example is a huge focus here, and so is educating the guests about their role in the local environment.
We showed up right on time for potato harvest, and got a first look an oxen pulled plough in action.
There are hiking trails from the ground through the neighboring forrest, but you’ll get a few days worth of eye candy without ever having to leave the front porch.
The front porch which, by the way, looks like this:
If you have the proper amount of clothing to star gaze, you’re also in for a real treat.
We were told camping isn’t yet offered here as Villa Pajon is still working out the details of creating a sustainable, responsible, camping area with all of the necessary amenities.
However there is a petting zoo :)
Oh, and this guys mows the lawn:
Yes, that is a horse with a normal sized head and very tiny legs.
Very very tiny legs.
Legs the size of its head.
Ain’t he ADORABLE!!
Come here to escape, come here for the peace and quiet, come here for the novelty of cold weather in the tropics, come here for all the pretty animals you’ll encounter, come here for the eco aspect.
Come for any of those reasons, but stay for the flowers.
It is out of the way, so make sure to call ahead and reserve.
Not to miss in the area:
- Aguas Blancas
- Valle Nuevo National Park
- The Dominican Alps
- Pico Duarte