You Decided to Book a Trip to the Punta Cana Dominican Republic – NOW what (Part 2)
Fox Travel’s Suggestions for Entertainment and Activities in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic
Casinos & Exciting Nightlife
The Dominican Republic is extraordinarily beautiful. Punta Cana’s an amazing destination with top resorts that have casinos with gaming tables, including blackjack, craps, roulette, and Baccarat. The 45,000-square-foot casino in Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana boasts the largest Sports Book in the Dominican Republic at 5,000-square-feet!
The larger resorts have their own nightclubs, bars, lounges and live entertainment shows. Some of the most popular clubs are Coco Bongo, Imagine, Oro, Mangú, among others.
As a major city, Santo Domingo offers numerous nightlife options after dinner as well as sightseeing. Groups can enjoy a concert or performance at the National Theater or Palacio de Bellas Artes, Casa de Teatro cultural center and the Hard Rock Café. Discos, clubs, small bars, and cafes in the city keep the excitement going. Those interested in gambling can enjoy games of chance at casinos located in numerous hotels.
Sports to Participate in and Watch
Baseball. Yes, Baseball in the Dominican Republic
Winter Professional Baseball Championship season runs from mid-October until the first week of February. In December and January, Dominican Major League Baseball greats join their local teams to close the regular season and commence league season finals. The championship winner represents the country in the Caribbean Series – Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Mexico and Venezuela rotate hosting the Series every year.
World-Class Golf Courses….This is the place for you!
Punta Cana is the destination of choice for those who seek upscale golf. With the largest selection of world-class golf courses (10), Punta Cana is a destination where golfers can treat themselves to challenges created by designers such as Nick Price, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Fazio, P.B. Dye and Jose-Pepe-Gancedo.
Water Sports & Scuba Diving
Resorts in the Dominican Republic offer on-site watersports that can include parasailing, SUP, windsurfing, sailing, and opportunities for snorkeling with colorful fishes and scuba diving right next to shipwrecks.
Great Sightseeing Day Tripping
Altos de Chavón
La Romana’s hidden gem is Altos de Chavón, a replica of a 16th-century Mediterranean artists’ village that relishes among cobblestone streets, and coral block and terra cotta buildings, offering magnificent scenic views of the Chavón River. It is a cultural center – home to artists’ studios, craft workshops, art galleries, archaeological and amber museum and the School of Design. In the heart of the village is a Grecian-style amphitheater, the Church of St. Stanislaus and many shops, bars and restaurants.
Catalina & Saona Islands
La Romana has two islands off its shores that are both worthy of day visits. Catalina Island is five miles south of La Romana and is popular for diving and snorkeling. Its Living Museum of the Sea is where visitors can view the historical wreck of the legendary Captain William Kidd. Saona Island is located in the National Park of the East (Cotubanamá) and is the most visited natural attraction in the country. On the way to Saona Island boats will stop at Palmilla beach, known as the natural pool for its transparent waters. Boats leave from Bayahibe and the trip there is as beautiful as Saona Island itself.
Nearby La Romana is the local resort area of Bayahibe. It was founded as a fishing village in 1874 and is now known as a favorite destination for beach and sun. This ecotourism-rich destination is located just 20 minutes east of La Romana and allows visitors to experience the history of an authentic fishing village. This region is also home to the country’s national flower, the beautifully exotic Bayahibe Rose.
Los Haitises National Park
Making up approximately 232 square miles of unique, diverse area, Los Haitises National Park is comprised of mangroves, estuaries, coves, and bays. Easily reached by a short boat ride across Samaná Bay, the park is well-known for both its magnificent series of limestone caves covered in Taíno Indian art and its boat excursions through exotic mangrove swamps. Visitors will find themselves surrounded by more than 100 species of birds, 90 plant species, a wide variety of mammals and caves bearing pre-Columbian Taíno art.
El Limón Waterfall
It’s a 1.5-mile hike or horseback ride through the jungle that ends with a plunge into this waterfall that drops 170- foot waterfall from the top of Sierra Samaná. It is located halfway between Las Terrenas and Samaná. Go on foot or on horseback.
Ecotourism & Adventure Tours
In addition to Los Haitises and El Limón, Samaná offers many options. Countryside excursions to deserted beaches or into the mountains are always a good choice. El Valle, between El Limón and Playa Rincón, boasts a zipline with 12 platforms through a forest and waterfall. Other zipline options with spectacular mountain views are available at Juana Vicente.
Whale Watching Season
Each winter 3,000 to 5,000 humpback whales migrate to the Dominican Republic to the warm crystalline waters of the Bay of Samaná. Whale-watching season begins in mid-January and continues through mid-March.
Keep reading ….You will like these activities.
Colonial City – UNESCO World Heritage Site – Santo Domingo
Visitors can walk the grid of 16 short streets and pass by 16th to early 20th-century architecture, small museums, shops, hotels, restaurants, and bars along the way. Cobblestone lanes and iron street lamps add to the historic feel. You can see The Plaza de la Cultural, the History and Geography Museum, the National Theater, and the Museum of Modern Art. Other museums include Alcázar de Colón (Colombus’ House), Casa del Tostado (18th-century family life), the Museum of Dominican Amber, Larimar Museum, Porcelain Museum, and the Duarte Museum. Another important site is the Columbus Lighthouse on the eastern bank of the Ozama River, which houses the remains of Christopher Columbus as well as exhibits from Spain and The Americas. The Chu Chu Colonial is a small train that offers a 45-minute trip by the 35 historic sites of the Colonial City.
Brugal Rum Factory. Yes, I am saying that Rum Production is a Cultural Activity.
The Dominican Republic is famous for its rum and Puerto Plata is home to one of the country’s most well-known brand factories, Brugal. Since 1888, this rum has been produced in Puerto Plata. No wonder it is a favorite of many locals and tourists. Tours are offered daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m
What about Weddings and Vow Renewals?
Take note that civil services are performed solely in Spanish, but translators can be a part of the ceremony. Some couples even have a legal wedding at home and then have a mock wedding once at a resort.
If a religious ceremony is desired, the DR has a number of beautiful churches and synagogues that can be used.
Religious ceremonies can be held at:
- San Estanislao Church in Altos de Chavón (La Romana)
- Basílica La Altagracia, Higüey, La Altagracia (Punta Cana)
- Jesús Maestro Parish (Bávaro)
- Cathedral of Puerto Plata
- Sosúa Synagogue (Puerto Plata)
- Santo Domingo Synagogue
- Cathedral of Santo Domingo
- Dominicus Convent (Santo Domingo)
- Cathedral of Santiago (Near Puerto Plata)
Many hotel packages include help with the legal requirements for getting married in the DR. The paperwork for the marriage certificate needs to be registered with Oficialia del Estado Civil (Civil Registry Office) and photocopies can be sent in advance with the originals brought upon arrival on the island.
To marry in the Dominican Republic, couples need:
- Valid passports with photocopy of the front page with the latest entries into the country
- Original birth certificates*
- Single status affidavit in Spanish* (a sworn declaration before a notary public of being single and eligible to marry)
Divorce certificates in Spanish* (if applicable)
- Two witnesses. If these are foreigners, they will need passports. If they are Dominicans, then their cédulas (Dominican ID cards) are sufficient. (Relatives cannot be witnesses.)
- *Legal transcripts of the birth certificates, single status affidavit, and divorce certificate can be prepared at the Dominican Consulate nearest the couple’s home where the documents were issued.
Did you know that travel agents have the inside scoop? We often have access to specials and perks that are not publically available. We also know the resorts, we’ve been there, the deals, the feedback from other clients about specific resorts and which resorts are ideal for your budget.
Another advantage of using a travel agent is convenience. Recently, during Hurricane Harvey, several Fox Travel client’s flights canceled. The Fox agent they booked their travel with rebooked their flights three times and rebooked the resort for them. Because they had purchased trip insurance, which we always recommend, our travelers had no additional costs. They were “forced” to extend their stay five days and could relax knowing everything was being handled.
TIP: Always buy travel insurance. In the unlikely event that you need it, it can save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Enjoy Alma’s other blogs on Punta Cana:|
- Punta Cana Resorts – Fly Directly from Houston
- A Hot Destination – Dominican Republic Punta Cana
- Things to Do in Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic
- You Decided to Book a Trip to the Punta Cana Dominican Republic – NOW what (Part 1)
- Excellence Resort Punta Cana
If you would like more information about trips to Punta Cana for family, romantic or travel with friends, contact Alma or one of our other travel experts. It’s easy as 1-2-3.
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