Dominican Republic Beaches
Ahhh the beaches! Sugar-white sand, crystal-clear warm water and enchanting ocean breezes are a formidable combination. That’s the image that most comes to mind when one thinks about the Dominican Republic, particular along eastern coast of the island in Punta Cana and the surrounding areas where the beaches stretch for over 30 miles! As such, you can enjoy your own private beach but most beaches, including those bordering resorts, are public.
Sunbathing, walking and running, beach volleyball, horseback riding, body surfing, snorkeling and polo are popular beach activities in beach destinations including Samaná, Sosua, Puerto Plata, La Altagracia, Miches, Cabarete, Barahona, Azua, Baní and San Cristóbal, among numerous others.
One of the biggest draws to the Dominican Republic is the crystal-clear water, which lends itself to a plethora of water sports for all ages and ability levels. From fishing to scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, parasailing, windsurfing, catamaran and glass bottom boats rides, kayaking, banana boating, wave runners, just plain kickin it on a day or sunset cruise and more, you will find it here. (Note: when planning your trip, be aware that Easter week is a major holiday in the Dominican Republic. And as such, due to the number of locals and tourists that flock to the beaches, some motorized, and often all water sports, are prohibited during this time).
All hotels and resorts have information and/or excursion desks) about the water sports available in the area and further afield. While most towns on the island offer most activities, there are certain areas that specialize in one or more diversions. For example, the barrier reefs and shipwrecks just offshore in Punta Cana are excellent locations for snorkeling and scuba diving.
For a unique underwater adventure, you might try Scubadoo in Punta Cana – a cross between a submarine and a motorbike.
From day fishing for a fresh catch for lunch or dinner, to large national, Caribbean and international tournaments that draw thousands of participants in search of a prize barracuda, Wahoo, marlin or other big game fish. Tourists can also rent their own boats, or embark upon fishing charters for half or full-day excursions.
Parasailing and windsurfing are other popular water sports on the island, particularly in Punta Cana because it is here that the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea comingle, creating powerful winds and amazing waves. For a more intense thrill, check out the white water rafting on the Yaque el North River. Starting in the Cordillera Central (central mountain range) at 8,500 feet, the river flows through several towns and villages.