Punta Cana is the land of ultimate rest and relaxation. Thanks to its many white sand beaches and all-inclusive resorts, the place has earned its reputation as the tourist destination for honeymoons and luxurious vacations. Located in between the Atlantic and the Caribbean, the Punta Cana resorts offer their guests all the comforts of modern living.
Featuring some of the best golf courses in the world, the region is the very embodiment of leisure. Professional golfers have designed several of the courses, making Punta Cana the perfect sort of kicked-back golf challenge for your vacation. And the beaches – oh, the beaches! They’re simply perfect; stretches of fine white sand gently washed by calm, warm waters. You can enjoy the zip-line adventures, get in touch with the traditional Dominican culture, or just explore the magical lagoons of the Indigenous Eyes Ecological Park.
How to Get There
When it comes to transport, you have three options, depending on where you come from. Given that Punta Cana is such a popular vacation destination, there is someone to help and direct you every step of the way, whether you choose to go by plane, boat, or car.
If You Travel By Plane
Punta Cana’s airport is one of the busiest and best connected in the region. Because of the high flow of tourists, sometimes it receives more flights than the Aeropuerto Internacional de Las Américas in Santo Domingo. You can book a flight with any of the several US carriers that have scheduled flights to Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ), such as American Airlines, United, Spirit Airlines, Frontier Airlines, US Airways or Delta.
Most travelers heading to Punta Cana have already booked their stay at a resort. Hotels that offer resort packages will also have airport pick-up arranged for their guests at the Punta Cana Airport. After retrieving luggage and clearing customs, take a right as you depart the final customs check area. Your hotel’s name should be on one of the signs of the many guides; they will direct you to the bus taking you to your final destination. If you want to, you can also take a private taxi, which are available at fixed prices.
Very important: Once you arrive at the Punta Cana airport, you are required to purchase a $10 tourist card before entering immigration. Unless you have a Dominican passport or a cedula residence card, the tourist card will be included in your documentation upon departure or issued on the flight.
If You Travel By Boat
Punta Cana is no stranger to boating. One of the most common water sport activities on the island, boating attracts many tourists and guests arriving to their hotels. Reputable companies operating in the area can also offer you the chance to try other activities, including parasailing, fishing, snorkeling, and sailing.
If You Travel By Car
Thanks to the popularity of this particular vacation destination, the Dominican Republic Government has recently built a new highway. Known as the “Autopisa Del Coral,” it starts from La Romana and ends at Punta Cana, covering a distance of 43 miles (70 km). However, tourists driving from Santo Domingo take the newest La Romana bypass, thus saving precious relaxation time. The highway’s speed limit is 70 mph (110 km/h) and it will take you less than an hour to arrive in Punta Can from La Romana.
The region provides an overwhelming offer of hotels and all-inclusive resorts. To make your job easier, we’ve compiled a list with the top ten most popular Punta Cana resorts. We have based our choices on TripAdvisor and Booking.com reviews, and we’ve included the links to the websites where you can start booking your room. Happy luxurious vacationing!
1. Zoëtry Agua Punta Cana
If you’re looking for luxury and tranquility, the 96-room Zoëtry Agua should be at the top of your list. An all-inclusive resort in the Dominican Republic, this destination caters to couples, boasting an uncrowded white-sand beach, a pristine pool, spacious suites, and one of the best spas on the island. Yoga classes, top-shelf liquor, laundry services, and horseback riding sessions are some of the included amenities. All of the rooms are equipped with large flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, and free Wi-Fi, and there’s nothing like an afternoon spent relaxing in the pristine pool with its swim-up bar. However, families might not find it suitable due to the difficult-to-reach location and the lack of a kids’ club. Zoëtry Agua is, therefore, the ideal choice for those seeking a romantic getaway.
2. Paradisus Palma Real Resort
With around 200 suites available, Paradisus Palma Real is a family-friendly destination, which offers an all-inclusive experience in a luxurious environment. The serene resort promises spacious grounds and meandering pathways, as well as upscale amenities. Some of the suites also come with swim-up terraces, so make sure you check that on your booking. You and your plus one can enjoy yoga, a top-notch spa, and relax in the seemingly never-ending pool area. Guests have free access to the beach area, services, facilities, and restaurants. Parents will be over the moon thanks to the entertaining Kids Zone and their babysitting services. In addition to spectacular spa treatments and a fully-equipped fitness center, tourists can also enjoy the quality restaurants and bars, the fantastic excursions, and personal concierge service.
3. Sanctuary Cap Cana
This 175-room all-inclusive luxury resort is the perfect location for a romantic getaway. On the outside, it looks like a Spanish castle town perched on a beautiful cliff by the ocean. In the inside, the Cap Cana complex is still developing, a bit further away from the main resort area. Its luxuriously decorated pools, restaurants, and spa are among the best in the Dominican Republic. The similarly priced Zoëtry Agua Punta Cana, located in the same area, is among the few resorts that can compare. In addition to the stunning cliffside location, the resort surprises with gorgeous rustic-chic rooms, and breathtaking ocean views.
The excellent white-sand beach is perfect for all-day lounging, but you can also relax at one of the six pools of the hotel. In terms of food, you can choose from buffet, Italian, Asian, and steakhouse restaurant. And if you’re one to practice sports on vacation, the resort offers free transportation to nearby Punta Espada, a renowned par 72, 18-hole golf course.
4. Excellence Punta Cana
This adult-only, all-inclusive property is just a 45-minute drive from the airport and features a spacious, upscale beach with rough waves. Don’t count too much on swimming in these waters, but do book a room here if you’re looking for surfer’s paradise. Unlike some of the other resorts in the area, Excellence has a more secluded feel, in spite of the 464 rooms on the property. Even so, the luxury pool is never too crowded, and you have plenty of high-end restaurants to choose from before hitting a lively casino or the theater. The 24-hour room service is highly praised, while the chlorophyll juice and apples offered at the fitness center keep you healthy and fit during your stay.
Spend your afternoons at the yoga room or in the luxurious two-floor spa. Excellence also offers a more expensive club upgrade, but many will find the standard package already has everything they need. The elegant beach-chic rooms feature colorful Caribbean influences, while the secluded beach invite you for long walks at sunrise. If you want something more active, you can always experience the many quality excursions, horseback riding, tennis, or biking.
5. Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana
An upscale resort, Dreams Palm Beach sits on a superb white-sand beach filled with fun water sports and zero annoying crowds. Thanks to its slightly higher rates, the Dreams has a more select clientele, lacking the raucous spring break feeling of other all-inclusive resorts. The property attracts families and couples with a lovely spa, large, pristine pool, a kids’ club, and daily entertainment. The above-average food is another major plus, as well as the modern rooms with flat-screen TVs and balconies or terraces. Whether you want to attend a dance lesson on the beach or watch a movie in your spacious suite, Dreams Palm Beach could be the answer to your wishes.