Nestled in the eastern coast of Dominican Republic you will find a Caribbean paradise. White sand beaches, azure waters, coconut trees and chilled Caribbean vibes: welcome to Punta Cana. The sprawling region of Punta Cana has seen incredible growth over the last decade and as a result there is an almost limitless choice of places to stay and things to see and do. Opt for a more secluded location, or to stay in the town of Punta Cana itself; explore from isolated coves or book organised excursions. Whatever you choose, you will be a stone’s throw away from world-class golf courses and exquisite beaches. Surrounded by mountains and crystal-clear waters, you will be spoilt for choice on your trip to Punta Cana.
Direct flights to Punta Cana will bring you to Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ), ten minutes’ drive from Punta Cana town.
Punta Cana enjoys a tropical climate, with temperatures rarely dropping below 20°C in winter. Due to its location, the island is fairly breezy, offering a gentle relief from the hot summer days, during which temperatures can reach well into the thirties. Wet season begins in May, continuing through to November, with the heaviest rainfall in September. Sitting within the Caribbean hurricane belt, Punta Cana can experience hurricanes, although direct hits are rare, happening every 20 years or so. If in doubt, avoid August and September when hurricanes are most likely to strike Dominican Republic. For cheap flights to Punta Cana, plan your trip outside of the school holidays – January is a particularly good time for deals.
Home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, it stands to reason that beaches and beach-based activities will feature heavily in your trip to Punta Cana. With over thirty miles of coast, Punta Cana’s beaches can be divided into 8 main regions, ranging from Uvero Alto in the north, to Punta Cana beach in the south. The northernmost beaches tend to be the roughest and are a haven for surfers. On Macao beach, surfers of all levels gather to enjoy the fantastic surf in stunning surroundings. If you are a learner or a complete novice, surf lessons are readily available at low prices. Aside from the surf, the growing resort of Punta Cana has not yet reached the shores of Macao, meaning that it remains an unspoilt paradise. As you progress south from Macao, the waters become ever calmer. At Punta Cana beach, which is lined with resorts, restaurants and activities, you will find crystal-clear, tranquil water. Don’t be put off by the developments springing up on and around the beach – nothing can detract from the exquisite beauty of the soft sand and inviting water. As always, if you venture a little off the beaten track, you will be handsomely rewarded. Punta Cana is home to a host of secret beaches and island escapes, such as Isla Catalina and Isla Saona, two small islands just off the Punta Cana coastline. The isolated beauty of Isla Catalina, complete with stunning coral reef is incomparable – take a snorkel and prepare to see paradise on earth.
Whether you love water sports, golf, fishing or horse riding, Punta Cana provides you with experiences that you will never forget. Punta Cana’s golf courses are renowned throughout the golfing world and amateurs and professionals alike will find the experience an incredible one. Beginners will enjoy the Golf de Bavaro course, at Barcelo Bavaro resort. Lush vegetation, exquisite views and the benefit of a drink at the resort itself afterwards make for a memorable experience. The course at the Cocotal Golf and Country Club was designed by champion golfer Pepe Gancedo. Divided into three 9-hole courses – the Hibiscus, Bougainvillea and Benjamina, the course is challenging and breathtakingly beautiful; golf aficionados are guaranteed to be star struck. If you fancy a round at the Cocotal, you will need to book 24 hours in advance. Fishing is very popular in Punta Cana, with locals and tourists alike vying to catch the Sail Fish. You can charter a boat or join an organised trip – if you are lucky enough to catch anything, some skippers even offer to prepare and cook your catch on the beach for you. Whether you love fishing or not, a boat trip is a fantastic way to relax and soak in the warm sun and sea air.
Shopping in Punta Cana is not restricted to the High Street and malls. Each resort is packed with small boutiques and gift shops selling everything from jewellery to local arts and crafts and many resorts have “market” days and evenings, when local vendors are invited into the complex. Be aware that souvenirs from resort shops will come with a much higher price tag; a price you pay for convenience. Streets and beaches are also crammed with stalls. You may not be able to verify the authenticity of your purchases but if you are sensible you will be able to find some fun mementoes of your trip to Punta Cana. Haggling is accepted and enjoyed in Punta Cana so don’t be afraid to have a little fun. It is not unusual for stall holders and shop owners to demand 2 or 3 times an item’s value. As a general rule of thumb, when you have been told a price make a counter-offer of half (or just under) the original price. Think about what you want to pay for something; a piece of local artwork may not be worth $40, but if you are happy to pay that much, then do! You will find a broad choice of native crafts, rum, cigars and fossils – you should be able to find souvenirs to suit all tastes! There are also plenty of jewellery shops; before investing in diamonds and gold, make sure it is authenticated and pay with credit card so you are insured.
Typical Dominican food features plantains, rice, beans and stew: good, wholesome fare created form the freshest local ingredients. At Punta Cana, you will find a vast choice of both traditional cuisine and international dishes. Many resorts provide buffets featuring a broad range of dishes, from lasagne to oyster bars! If you are looking for an authentic Dominican dining experience, ask around for somewhere traditional. Seafood is likely to feature heavily on the menu, barbecued or grilled and gently spiced. Served, of course, with a side of fried plantain, yucca, or sweet potato! Asapao is a must-try dish: a hybrid of paella, risotto and broth in a rich sauce laden with shrimps or chicken. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a range of dairy-rich dishes, laden with coconut and sugar. Tres leches (three milks) is a delicious sponge soaked in three (yes three) kinds of milk and topped with cream, or you could try dulce de coco, a creamy coconut desert that is just beautiful. Like the island, Punta Cana’s food is simple, moreish and utterly beautiful. If you want to create your dream holiday to Dominican Republic, let Travangelo help you to find cheap flights to Punta Cana.