Award-Winning Journalist and DR Expert Launches

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

DR Visitor, a website and blog focusing on eco-adventure, culture, and sustainable travel in the Dominican Republic, launched in February 2017 with award-winning travel journalist and photographer Lebawit Lily Girma at its helm. DR Visitor is the most up-to-date online resource and blog of its kind on the Dominican Republic written in the English language. 

Secluded Beach, Samana Peninsula. Find travel tips to the Dominican Republic at
Secluded Beach, Samana Peninsula

With Girma’s vibrant photography and storytelling, DR Visitor showcases a Dominican Republic few know or see beyond all-inclusive resort towns. Whether it’s finding an uncrowded beach, hiking a coffee plantation at over 2,000 feet, tasting Dominican dishes or finding unique accommodations, DR Visitor showcases a destination expert’s insider knowledge. Visitors are inspired to plan memorable trips that will immerse them in the country’s diverse landscape and culture, and make a positive impact all around. 

Secluded falls in north DR. From Award-Winning Journalist and DR Expert Launches
Secluded falls in north DR

DR Visitor Mission

As companion to Girma’s new edition of Moon Dominican Republic guidebook for Moon Travel Guides (here's our interview with her!), released in December 2016, DR Visitor leads independent travelers towards authentic experiences, with expert tips on where to go, what to do, where to stay, and how to best spend time in the country. It is a resource with an eye towards sustainable travel–the kind that is growing in the DR and in the Caribbean.

"While researching on the ground in 2014-2015, I realized that there was no independent blog or resource in English where travelers could find current, first-hand accounts on the more unique cultural and outdoor places and experiences around the DR.” Girma said. “Articles on the web are mostly about the same tourist hotspots, and are not written by destination experts.

Travel tips you can find thus far on DR Visitor include:
• 7 (Responsible) Things You Should Know Before You Tour Saona Island
• Finding Power in A Cocoa Bean: A Day At The Chocal Chocolate Factory in Altamira
• The DR’s 10 Best Beaches (based on knowledge of over 100 stretches)

Cacao factory in the Dominican Republic, via DRVisitor
Cacao Factory

More About The Founder

Lebawit “Lily” Girma is an Ethiopian-American multilingual, award-winning writer and travel photographer. Lily is the author of several Caribbean guidebooks for Moon Travel Guides, including Moon Belize, Belize Cayes, and a new edition of Moon Dominican Republic. Her articles and photography on the Caribbean region have been published in travel outlets such as CNN Travel, AFAR, The Guardian, Delta Sky, MorningCalm Magazine, BBC Travel, New York Magazine, MorningCalm Magazine (Korean Air), American Way, Every Day With Rachael Ray, and Lonely Planet, among others. She is the Jamaica expert and digital guide author for AFAR. She is the recipient of the 2016 Marcia Vickery Wallace Memorial Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism from the Caribbean Tourism Organization and from the Jamaica Tourist Board, for her coverage of the Caribbean region over the years. She also runs an award-winning travel and photography blog since 2009, Sunshine & Stilettos.

Kakaying at Laguna Dudu, Dominican Republic.
Kakaying at Laguna Dudu

Get in Touch

If you’re interested in talking about opportunities for sponsorship and blogging, advertising, partnership, or media coverage, please email at[at]  

Visit for more information. You can also join DR Visitor on Facebook and Instagram.

Mountain Village Stays - learn about traveling to the Dominican Republic at DRVisitor
Mountain Village Stays


All photos courtesy and copyright Lebawit Lily Girma,