If you’re looking for the best things to do in this season’s hottest destination, welcome! Punta Cana has been expecting you!
Over the past 10 years, this incredible vacation spot has come into the spotlight as one of the best destinations for hanging out on the beach, relaxing, and having a good time. It’s so popular that even the “Real Housewives” have vacationed there!
Located in the far eastern corner of the Dominican Republic, Punta Cana has its own international airport which opened in 1984 and has some of the most exclusive hotel and resort chains that you’ll find on this tiny paradise island.
If you still haven’t visited Punta Cana and your summer plans include eating “mangu,” dancing “bachata,” and relaxing on the beach, here are 7 of the top things to do while you’re in Punta Cana.
Visit the Haitises National Park (The Samaná Bay)
If you have a wanderer’s soul, this national park awaits you in Samana Bay. Unlike other destinations, the Haitises National Park is only accessible by motorboat, but we promise it’s worth the ride!
The trip begins by boat crossing the incredible mangrove trees that line the coast until you get to the warm tropical wetlands region. Here, a tour guide who is an expert in the local flora and fauna will explain the ecosystem before inviting you to join them and enter the cave of the Taino Indians (the native Dominicans.) The tour ends by the San Lorenzo Bay and the milestones.
If you’re dying to go on the beach, you’ll find a lot of options that all have beautiful crystalline waters and white sands on the Cayo Levantado Island. You can even stay at the Paraíso Caño Hondo eco-resort where they work to make tourism sustainable.
Take a day trip to Saona Island
Located next to the coasts of the Altagracia province, visiting Saona Island is easy; it’s one of the most budget-friendly areas in Punta Cana with about a $60-$100 price tag per day.
During the trip to the island, you’ll be invited to dunk your head underwater in the island’s natural pool located half a mile from the coast. Don’t worry; it’s completely safe! The water level never goes above 5 feet.
The views are absolutely breathtaking with their expansive cloud-free skies and a turquoise sea that extends as far as the eye can see. Bring your bug repellent and sunscreen and prepare to swim for hours on end.
Go on a cultural visit to Santo Domingo
If the name of this city reminds you of your school days, it’s because it was the first colonial city established by Europeans in the Western Hemisphere. It’s famous for being the site of Columbus’ first house in the Western Hemisphere, the first cathedral built on Western soil, and the first hospital created for the Spanish explorers. If you’re a history buff, Santo Domingo is the place for you.
Life here is full of tropical warmth, souvenir stores, bars, restaurants, and bachata music.
All you have to do to get to Santo Domingo is get on a bus from Punta Cana.
A trip to the Altos de Chavón cultural center
Known as the City of Artists, Altos de Chavón was founded in 1976 when Charles Bluhdorn, an investor and founder from Punta Cana, decided to use the remains of a colonial development to establish a small Mediterranean town in the surrounding area. The stone was then cut and built to start building a Mediterranean-style town evocative of the 16th century which was planned and designed by Italian architect and artist Roberto Coppa.
The city now acts as a group of artist’s workshops for renowned design schools in France, New York, and Japan and boasts an amphitheater which has been an iconic performance facility for dozens of local and internationally renowned artists including Bad Bunny, Chayanne, David Guetta, Julio Iglesias, Wisin, Yandel, Placido Domingo, Paulina Rubio, Don Omar, Juan Gabriel, and many more.
Hiking through Ojos Indígenas
With 12 freshwater lagoons and over 600 hectares of tropical rainforest, the Ojos Indígenas national park is a place to put on your bucket list.
Hike through the trees, take a dip in the natural springs, admire the mangrove’s grandeur, climb up the hills, and enjoy the incredible natural beauty that flows in abundance throughout this park.
You’re welcome to take a long walk on the beach too, but there are plenty of other things to do, including:
- A trip on a catamaran
- Swimming in the lagoons
- A horseback ride on the beach
Swimming along the Coconut Coast
Over 30 miles of continuous beachfront await you on the Coconut Coast. Bring your sunscreen (SPF 30+), your towel, and a desire to leave your stress behind. The turquoise waters and calm sea breeze will relax you completely.
Diving in Punta Cana
Nothing comes closer to interacting with marine life (where you can see sharks and the occasional manta ray) in Punta Cana than diving, and there are plenty of places where you can swim with the fish. From the coral reefs to the abandoned shipwrecks, the best thing to do to enjoy these natural wonders is to go through a diving tour company for transportation and equipment rental.
You can go deep sea diving to discover a 90-year-old shipwreck and immerse yourself in the ocean. Or you can swim through a coral reef and be amazed by its algae, coral, and marine life.
Whether you prefer to travel for a few days or want to relocate and stay a whole month, we recommend that you use this list of the top 7 things to put on your Punta Cana to-do list to plan your next trip to the Dominican Republic.
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