Looking for a fun and active vacation in the sun? The Dominican Republic is certainly a good choice. The second largest country in the Caribbean, after Cuba, the Dominican Republic is a favourite with Canadians for its beautiful beaches, world class golf courses, variety of activities and well priced resorts. In our recent poll, readers chose their favourite thing to do in the Dominican Republic. Swimming, whale watching, 4 wheel drive adventures and water sports were favourite activities, but the number one choice was actually inactivity – relaxing at the beach came in first place. You’ll certainly have no problem finishing up an active day with time on a stretch of soft, white sand. The 1,000-mile coastline is home to some of the world’s best beaches.
The Dominican Republic’s coastline has several different regions, all offering the visitor a variety of experiences and spectacular beaches.
- On the East Coast, the Punta Canaresort area is one of the Dominican Republic’s most popular destinations.
- It is known as the Coconut Coast, thanks to hundreds of coconut palms along the super fine white sand beach.
- There are many all-inclusive resorts in the area.
- The beach is 30 miles long so there is always free space available.
- Punta Cana activities include scuba diving, snorkelling, water sports, golf, jeep safaris, helicopter tours, horseback riding, and whale watching (January to March).
- On the north coast, near Puerto Plata,the beach at Cabarate is ranked in the top five kiteboarding and windsurfing beaches in the world.
- Amateur and pro riders alike practice their skills here year round in kiteboarding and windsurfing.
- International championships are held at Cabarate beach every year.
- At Ocean World marine theme park you can swim with dolphins, feed stingrays, explore an artificial reef or try your luck at the casino.
- Other activities include snorkelling around the offshore coral reef, glass bottom boat rides and this is a premiere spot for bird watching.
- The Samana Peninsula region on the north east coast is home to some exceptional, palm fringed beaches and mountainous, tropical landscapes.
- Playa Rincon is considered by many Dominicans as the most beautiful beach on the island. It is an isolated, three-mile beach, accessible by boat from Las Galeras.
- Cayo Levantado is a small island known as Bacardi Island as it was chosen by Bacardi Rum company for their commercial. With soft white, powdery sand and turquoise, crystal clear waters, it is a little bit of paradise for swimming, snorkeling and scuba diving.
- The lush Samana area offers spectacular scenery and several waterfalls including spectacular El Limón waterfall accessible on tours, jeep adventures or with a private guide.
- Thousands of humpback whales winter here and you are guaranteed to see them on the whale watching cruise in Samana Bay. (January to March.)
- On the south coast at La Romana the white sand beaches are inviting.
- There are many family-friendly, all-inclusive resorts in the area.
- Ideal for water sports, tennis, horseback riding, catamaran sailing, scuba diving and snorkelling.
- The 7,000-acre resort community of Casa de Campo has received many awards as one of the best golf resorts in the world and in April, 2008 was named “Best in the Caribbean” by Golf Magazine. The fabulous facilities are open to those staying at other hotels. Former President Clinton enjoys playing golf at the four, scenic courses including the renowned “Teeth of the Dog”.
- Santo Domingo, the capital city and oldest city in the Americas, makes a good day excursion. Visit the colonial area with its cobblestone streets, Spanish architecture and many points of interest.
- The South West Coast is a well kept secret, slowly opening to tourism. This is a popular vacation spot for the Dominicans, naturalists and outdoors enthusiasts.
- The area around Baharona is unspoiled with the greatest biodiversity on the island. The largest salt water lake in the Caribbean, the Pomier Caves, the Salinas dunes and windsurfing area, desert, mountain rainforests and a fruit-producing area are all found here.
- The protected beach of Bahia de las Aguilas is part of the Jaragua-Bahoruco-Enriquillo Biosphere Reserve, recognized by UNESCO since 2002.
- The beach at San Rafael has a strong ocean surf and a natural swimming pool created by a water from the nearby mountains.
- Additional activities in the area are scuba diving and bird watching.
No matter which area you choose for your vacation, you are sure to enjoy sun, fun and beautiful beaches in the Dominican Republic and arrive home energized and refreshed.