If you're thinking about visiting Punta Cana, you're not alone! This Dominican Republic area recently shattered its previous record for international travelers.
In August 2022, the country welcomed more than 6000,000 international visitors and was expected to receive 7 million more by the end of 2023.
This increase in interest from tourists is no surprise when you know about the natural beauty and wonders of the region.
When you visit Bahia Principe Luxury Esmeralda, you'll always be near excitement, fun, and beautiful views that will create memories that last a lifetime.
Whether you're looking for adventure and romantic sights or just want to have fun, we're happy to share the best tours and excursions you can book from Bahia Principe Luxury Esmeralda.
Read on to learn about the best experiences near Bahia Principe Luxury Esmeralda for your next visit.
Visit Saona Island
Do you want to get away for a day and explore what the Caribbean offers? Take off to Saona Island, a tropical island first discovered by Christopher Columbus that is just a quick boat ride from Punta Cana.
Tour this paradise for a day full of new experiences and sights to add to your vacation memories.
Begin your day at Bayahibe, a fishing village where you'll settle into a catamaran that will take you to Saona Island. While on the boat, enjoy some drinks, dance aboard, or enjoy the views.
Once you have arrived, take the island's natural beauty as a government-protected nature preserve.
Get up close and personal with fields of giant starfish and tropical waterfowl. Enjoy an island drink while you bask in the sun, dance merengue, and play beach games like volleyball.
See the sights of a sacred Taino Indian princess's natural swimming area, where you can relax or swim to your heart's content.
Your perfect island day even comes with a buffet-style lunch. Savor the tastes of chicken, pork cutlet, rice, salads, pasta, and bread to satisfy any cravings.
This experience is memorable as the beaches of Saona are so beautiful and pristine. They were even selected by Caribbean Travel & Life as some of the best dream beaches in the Caribbean.
Book your trip to Saona Island.
Spend a Day at Scape Park
Scape Park is perfect if you want to experience everything from an adrenaline rush to a relaxing afternoon.
No matter what activity you do in Punta Cana, you are surrounded by beauty. Scape Park is no different!
Soar past the trees and amazing views on one of the eight cliffside zip lines. This activity is fun and safe for the whole family, too! You'll want to hop on one of their zip lines for those seeking thrills.
Beat the heat by jumping into the Saltos Azules! These fun rope swings speed you through the air past natural caves and exciting waterfalls. You'll end your ride splashing around in refreshing waters.
Choose from their Mabo rope, Macula swing, monkey bar, and water hammocks!
For a truly unique experience, you won't find at most adventure parks, check out Hoyo Azul. This natural watering hole will feel like an exotic escape, allowing you to come face-to-face with the Caribbean's ecosystem.
Visit Iguabonita Cave, where you can explore natural underground caverns and tunnels. Here you can also see the gorgeous geological formations.
Animal lovers will have plenty to keep them busy too. Visit El Rancho, where you can get close and learn about horses, goats, and other farm animals.
Meet the rhinoceros iguana, a species thay found on our island at Iguanaland. Also, meet the colorful parrots of Parrot Island. Remember to say hello to Monkey Island's furry capuchin and squirrel monkeys!
Book your tickets to Scape Park.
Do you love feeling the wind across your face while driving at high speeds? If adventure excites you, you'll want to head to the best dune buggy excursion Punta Cana offers.
With so much natural terrain to cover, a dune buggy tour is a perfect and unique way to see the island from a whole new perspective. Enjoy the best buggy tour in Punta Cana; fun from start to finish!
Get ready to get down and dirty when you drive through the mud! You can also go to a local beach, cave, jungle, or organic farm to stretch your legs and explore.
At the organic farm, you'll learn about locally made chocolate, rum, coffee, and coconut oil from a local guide. You'll also get to sip on national drinks like mamajuana or rum.
This tour also stops at a gorgeous and mysterious Indian cave. Explore the cave and rinse the mud of your adventure in the crystal clear waters of the cave's natural spring.
No matter what you're looking for from your buggy tour, you will find it in Punta Cana. Fly past stunning views and backdrops. Explore water-filled caves, tropical nature, and more for an experience.
See La Romana
Another fantastic place to visit nearby is the beautiful city of La Romana. This city is in the southeastern area of the Dominican Republic.
It has a convenient airport nearby and is close enough to quickly get to and from Punta Cana.
This city is perfect for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the more tourist-heavy parts of the island. It's the ideal choice for unwinding after spending a few days in busy restaurants, bars, and clubs.
La Romana may be small, but it's overflowing with opportunities. Here, you can see and experience everything the Dominican Republic offers.
There are several beaches to choose from if you're looking to soak up the sun, relax, and enjoy the peaceful sounds of the ocean nearby.
If tranquility and privacy are high on your priorities, visit Playa Bayahibe. If, on the other hand, you're looking to meet and mingle with locals, then check out Playa El Caletón.
Any beach you choose will also have clear and calm waters to explore. This also makes it a good choice for families with small children who will feel safer in peaceful waters.
It's the perfect place to go snorkeling and see the underwater world that lives offshore. Kayaking and paddle boating are also available, but don't expect to find surfing or other water sports options here - the waters are that calm!
See the city's Cueva de las Maravillas or Cave of Wonders. The name says it all; this breathtaking national park is a unique experience in the Dominican Republic.
View the historic Taino paintings of the cave and take in the hundreds of well-preserved pictograms and petroglyphs.
Enjoy A Party Boat
Nothing beats getting on a boat to relax in the sun and enjoy the ocean views and rhythm while on vacation! Spending time in the open waters is a must while you're visiting.
Whether you're looking to unwind or dance and drink on a party boat, Punta Cana has a boat experience that will fit perfectly into your plans.
Plenty of party boat rentals are on the island, and you can book a fantastic party boat.
What can you expect from a day out at sea? Enjoy the unforgettable sunrise or sunset as your backdrop. Drink and dance the day away with your boat passengers while music fills the air.
While every boat party is different, most offer options for even more fun under the sun. These include snorkeling over colorful coral reefs or enjoying an open-air bar with drinks and appetizers.
If you're looking for a calmer boating excursion, there are also options for sailing and cruising for rest and casual fun.
These calming excursions are perfect for your whole family or celebrating special occasions. They're ideal when you want an intimate gathering to simply appreciate the people in your life or enjoy time together.
They're also fantastic for creating an excellent romantic night and reconnecting or bonding with your loved one.
Book the best party boat in Punta Cana!
See Santo Domingo
This beautiful capital city is perfect for exploring gorgeous sights, flourishing nature, and fascinating history.
Santo Domingo is the oldest permanent city in the New World, established by Europeans, making it an exceptional place. It's also the place of the most senior Catholic archbishopric in the Americas.
It's the cultural and financial center of the Dominican Republic, so there is plenty of things to do and see. For the historical aspect alone, this city is worth spending a day delving into all the sights you can find.
Head to the Ciudad Colonial, where you will walk cobblestone paths and take in medieval architecture and historical monuments. You'll see for yourself the very first paved streets in the Americas!
Visit Ozama Fortress, the oldest European structure. It was designed to mimic the form of a castle and was once part of the protective walls surrounding Santo Domingo. You can still visit its secret tunnels and dungeons.
Another must-see attraction is the oldest cathedral of the New World, the Basilica Cathedral Santa María la Menor. Here you will get an up-close look at its gorgeous gothic architecture, sculptures, and wood carvings.
You'll also see its mausoleums, paintings, and tombstones, including that of Simón Bolívar, a historical, influential leader who helped nations free themselves and become independent from Spain.
Once you've seen these must-see attractions, there are other museums and restaurants. Stop by Los Tres Ojos National Park to see natural limestone caves and brilliant underground lakes.
Here you can climb down ladders to explore its caves, see ancient cave art, and take a boat ride through the lakes.
Book your tour to Santo Domingo!
Higuey City Tour
What better way to explore the nearby city of Higuey, one of the biggest cities near Punta Cana, than on the back of a Safari Truck?
You'll want to ensure you have your camera when booking a cultural tour in Punta Cana. Incredible panoramas will be captured on this fun-filled day.
On this city tour, you'll see the largest and most important church to the Dominicans and a typical Dominican village life.
You'll also drive through the sugar cane and rice plantations. Here, you will learn about history, why the Spanish brought sugar to the island, how they brought it, and the economic impact it has had on the island since then.
Learn how a "trapiche," or wheel grinder pulled by oxen, was used to extract and collect syrup from sugar cane. You'll even get a chance to try fresh sugar cane juice!
There will also be an opportunity to take a break from the ride for other experiences. Saddle up, ride horseback through the forest, and enjoy swimming at Macao Beach.
You'll end your day with a ride through Anamuya Mountain to see daily life in the countryside.
This tour is led by friendly, knowledgeable staff who welcome you and share the city's history! It includes a delicious chicken and beef creole lunch, spaghetti Pomodoro, rice and beans, fresh fruit, and a salad bar.
El Limón Waterfall and Bacardi Island
Nothing beats the beauty of a tropical waterfall, and El Limón Waterfall is no exception. This is a must-see sight for nature lovers or those wanting a romantic horseback ride with gorgeous views.
You can also walk the trail to this waterfall, but the terrain can be rough and steep in certain areas, so many prefer to reach it by horseback. If you choose to walk, it's about a 40-minute hike through the forest.
This waterfall can be found on the Samana Peninsula, considered one of the most exotic places in the world. Even when the rains and mud are present, it's worth going up the path to see the waterfall.
You'll travel through a lush, sultry forest to reach your destination and see one of the highest waterfalls in the Dominican Republic. The watery spectacle is about 171 feet tall.
Once you reach the waterfall, you can take in the spectacular view and enjoy splashing and relaxing in the natural pool beneath it. Locals and travelers will likely be beside you, enjoying it.
This is one of the best views in the Dominican Republic and is not an attraction to be missed!
Book your trip to El Limon Waterfall!
When you want to experience many aspects of Punta Cana, you can go right when you spend a day or night in the downtown area.
With many restaurants and shopping areas, you can get your sightseeing while also treating yourself to souvenirs and items unique to Punta Cana.
Head to the Downtown Mall, where you can find most things you want or need while visiting Punta Cana. You'll find something from groceries to cell phone needs and toys for everyone here.
The Plaza San Juan Shopping Center is another excellent one-stop shopping experience. Shop for clothes, and then stop by their food court.
If authentic cigars interest you, you'll want to find the Don Lucas Cigar Shop. This cigar club creates a fun, inviting atmosphere where you can relax while listening to music, sipping drinks, and enjoying cigars.
Dinner In The Sky is an attractive option for a romantic but thrilling dinner for two. This restaurant creates an experience that elevates you to new heights where you will enjoy an unforgettable meal.
This open-air experience will have you sitting at a table in the sky by a crane, so be prepared for a meal unlike any other. Enjoy views from about 147 feet high while you dine from a gourmet menu and sip on premium drinks.
You'll also have the option of having a professional photographer capture this unique experience. You will also get the chance to take your photos as well!
Dance the Night Away
Punta Cana is full of stunning views and is bound to be the perfect backdrop to create memories you will take and remember long after you've left.
While plenty of natural sights and excursions exist, the city's thriving nightlife is not to be missed! If you love cutting loose and showing off or enjoying yourself on a dance floor, there are many places to find this.
You won't miss heading to Coco Bongo Show & Disco for a lively night of dancing and performances. This club quickly became the city's hottest nightlife spot for locals and tourists.
Book your CocoBongo tickets here!
Here you will be treated to one of their themed shows, such as The Mask, inspired by the '90s Jim Carrey movie. Let The Mask entertain you and your group with his hilarious hijinks as he dances with the beautiful Tina.
There is also a Beatles show where you will enjoy acrobatics and dancers, all while singing and dancing to some of the most beloved songs in music history.
Also to be noticed is their 300 show, inspired by the film 300, where you will watch Spartans perform incredible stunts. Last is their classic Samba show, a fun performance inspired by Carnival in Rio De Janeiro.
If you're looking to party harder than ever, check out Legacy Disco Club, the only nightclub in Punta Cana open until sunrise! This club plays the #1 hip hop and Latin music hits to dance to until morning.
Kviar Show Disco and Casino is another good spot ideal for entertainment, dancing, and classic casino and card games.
If the simple serenity of fishing calls to you on your vacation, you're in luck. Punta Cana is an ideal spot for fishing.
From the bevy of fish in the waters to the tranquil beauty of the open ocean and sky, a fishing trip is a beautiful experience to book during your stay in Punta Cana.
Make your excursion easier when pre-booking your fishing trip.
The excursion offers a convenient experience with transportation to and from your hotel and all the necessary equipment and baits.
The knowledgeable and experienced staff will take you to the best spots to catch the most fish. Their team is always happy to help and guide you and your group through your fishing experience with a smile.
You'll have the opportunity to spot and catch fish like marlin, Mahi-mahi, barracuda, wahoos, and yellowfin tuna, among others.
Plus, with this unique excursion, you also have the option to eat what you catch for an extraordinary experience unique to Punta Cana.
Simply ask one of their friendly staff members about the Catch n' Eat option. They will take your catch to a beachside restaurant and prepare it so you can enjoy the delicious, fresh fish as soon as your excursion is over.
Your group will leave this excursion with new memories, smiles on your faces, and a belly full of fresh fish you caught yourself!
Visit Catalina Island
Punta Cana is near some of the best day excursions the Caribbean offers, and Catalina Island is no exception!
Best of all, when you book your tour with us, every detail is figured out for you before your arrival. All you have to do is show up ready to traverse across the water to the island for a fun-filled day.
This excursion is an all-day event. You will be picked up from your hotel, and your journey will begin once you board a comfortable catamaran, where you will meet your captain, crew, and snorkeling instructors for the day.
Together, you'll sail through the seas for about 30 minutes until you reach a beautiful snorkeling site, "The Wall," known for its spectacular variety of marine life and aquatic plants.
After you have had time to experience the island's underwater world, your journey continues with a trip to a private beach. Here, you will have a chance to unwind with a BBQ lunch prepared just for your group.
You'll also have plenty of chances to sip on your drinks of choice, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. Unlimited alcoholic beverages will be available on the private beach and during your returning boat ride.
Take time to soak in the atmosphere and lay atop the white sand beach under the Caribbean sun.
Once the tour is over, relax onboard as you cruise back along the Dominican coast. You can also venture back into the water and continue to snorkel offshore. All snorkeling equipment will be provided to you as part of your excursion.
Try Zip Lining
There is no better way to truly experience the wonder and magic of the tropical, lush forests of Punta Cana than to try zip lining. Luckily, there is plenty of forest or ziplining opportunities nearby!
This activity is fun for the whole family and is a unique way to soar through the air to get a bird's eye view of this tropical paradise you won't find through any other activity.
Bring comfortable shoes and clothes, as light walking is required, and you'll be strapped into zipline harnesses. Consider bringing sunglasses and sunscreen.
Your day of adventure in the sky will include seamless transportation to and from your hotel, advice, and guidance from professional guides. They will give your group a safety briefing and all the necessary equipment.
Your guide will also conduct a full safety check before you take off, so you'll feel confident that you're in good hands.
The real fun begins once you reach your first zip line. There are 12 mountainside zip lines and 18 platforms to enjoy aerial views, including two of the Caribbean's most extended zip lines.
Cables are also set side by side so you can zip alongside a partner! Together you can witness the stunning views, flora, and fauna of the Dominican Republic, all while soaking in this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Enjoy some nice cold water once you've spent the afternoon soaring through the air.
Visit Historical Sites
The Dominican Republic is known for its stunning nature and awe-inspiring historical sites.
Altos de Chavón is a beautiful combination of both of these things! This historic Mediterranean village replicates a town that once stood during the 16th century, handcrafted and designed by artisans.
This gorgeous village is a haven for artists of all kinds. Its cobblestone streets are lined by active artist studios of every medium, from silk screening to pottery; you'll be treated to the beauty of art in various forms.
There are also plenty of unique shops and boutiques to browse through. Here you will find everything from fine jewelry to embroidered linens and cigars.
Check out the many art galleries, which feature artwork from Dominican artists, nearby Altos de Chavón School of Design students, and other artists worldwide.
To understand the full scope of the area's history, visit The Archaeological Regional Museum. This museum houses more than 3,000 items, including indigenous objects that tell the story of the area's earliest history.
Step into the stone St. Stanislaus Church to take in this active church's hand-carved statues and rock walls. This setting is beautiful enough that couples still plan their weddings here.
You will not want to miss seeing the Altos de Chavón Amphitheater spectacle. This amphitheater seats 5,000, is at the center of the area, and is designed in the style of ancient Grecian amphitheaters.
Performances have taken place here since Frank Sinatra first performed. Since then, notable artists like Elton John, Sting, and Gloria Estefan have performed here. You can take in a truly rare concert if you're lucky.
Go Whale Watching
An excellent excursion for the whole family that will be as inspiring as it is restful is Whale watching.
As you sail on the Caribbean seas, you will always remember the sights of one of nature's most fantastic animals, the humpback whale.
Whale watching in the Dominican Republic is a unique experience difficult to find anywhere else. The Sanctuary of the Humpback Whales in Samana is located along the whales' route to mate and breed yearly.
Every year between December and March, around 2,000 whales can be spotted swimming in the warm waters of the Atlantic Ocean. All populations of Atlantic humpback whales return to Dominican waters to reproduce.
When you book your whale-watching adventure, you're guaranteed a magical, stress-free day, as all the details and amenities are included.
Your day will start with an included ride from your hotel. On this excursion, you'll sail across the ocean on a double-decker catamaran while enjoying panoramic views of the Miches and Anamuya mountains.
Your boat ride will offer water, rum, and drinks while you're onboard.
You will also sail to Bacardi Island, where you'll have a tasty buffet lunch and have time to walk along and see the beach. Your day will end with an included ride back to your hotel, where you can debrief about your adventure!
Book your Whale watching tour!
Visit a Water Park or Aquarium
There are plenty of chances to splash around in Punta Cana! With many water parks to choose from, you'll always be close to thrills that leave you soaked to beat the heat.
Caribbean Lake Park is a great place to head for an exciting day on the water. You can also simply relax by the pool or enjoy the restaurant. This is the spot for you if you want a place to wakeboard.
Another wonderful water park to visit is Ocean Park, where you will have a chance to get to know some ocean animals and enjoy new experiences. This park is unique because it is in the middle of the ocean!
Here you can swim with sharks, meet dolphins up close and swim or view stingrays. You can even enjoy the delicious food from their restaurant while watching the adorable dolphins play in their habitat.
If you and your family are animal lovers, you'll also want to stop at one of Punta Cana's aquariums!
Choose between Acuariofilia Punta Cana, the Seaquarium, and Acuario Bavaria Punta Cana. Many resorts in the Punta Cana area offer complimentary, small water parks for children and families.
Spend the Day Golfing
If your idea of relaxing while on vacation in a tropical paradise includes golfing, Punta Cana has some of the most beautiful golf courses in the world.
Our staff will gladly point you in the direction of and organize a round of golf for you.
We highly recommend Punta Blanca Golf and Country Club. This golf course is a masterpiece by Nick Price, an iconic golfer and designer.
This golf course is surrounded by lush vegetation and wetlands, so you'll be surrounded by natural beauty while you play. The course even provides a fact sheet for those looking into the handicaps, scorecards, and distances.
The Cocotal Golf and Country Club offers three new nine-hole courses designed by six-time Spanish golf champion Pepe Gancedo.
This gorgeous golf course is dotted with many coconut trees and lakes for those that are bird watchers as well as golfers. You can also stop by Hazard Sports Bar, where you'll be able to enjoy food, drinks, and a happy hour.
La Cana Golf Club is another excellent option for getting a game while enjoying the stunning backdrop of the Caribbean Sea. This seaside golf club features 27 holes consisting of three nines.
Once your game is done, head to the luxurious 19th Hole Terrace, an area designed by Oscar de la Renta designed for relaxing and watching other golf games. After, check out the clubhouse for backgammon and mingling.
Meet Some Punta Cana Dolphins
Get to know the lovable dolphins of Punta Cana as up close and personal as you can get!
Dolphins are known for being naturally curious and bright animals. During this excursion, you'll learn even more about these majestic mammals. Best of all, this activity is fun for the whole family and kids of all ages.
During your time with the dolphins, you'll get a chance to give a dolphin a handshake, a hug, or maybe even a sweet kiss from one of these creatures with the regular excursion package.
Kids can stand on a convenient underwater platform, so interacting with the dolphins is easy. These dolphin experiences are capped at 15 people per group to ensure everyone has a personal experience.
This environment focuses on education and safety. You'll get a chance to learn all about the dolphins from specialists while you watch in awe as they perform tricks.
You will also have the option of choosing Deluxe Experience or Royal Experience.
The Deluxe Experience includes interacting with the dolphins and getting a fun Boogie Push when a dolphin pushes you across the water while on a boogie board.
The Royal Experience includes interacting with the dolphins and a Foot Push, where two dolphins lift you out of the water. You'll also enjoy holding onto a dolphin's dorsal fin while they pull you across the water.
Bahia Principe Luxury Esmeralda
Punta Cana is truly a special place in the Caribbean. It is unique in its natural resources, stunning views, and historical sites. You'll never forget your time spent at Bahia Principe Luxury Esmeralda.
No matter what you do, you'll end your day feeling satisfied with creating new memories you and your loved ones will cherish forever.
Now you know all the top must-see sights and excursions for your next trip to Punta Cana!
Booking with Punta Cana Transfer makes it even easier. Contact us today with questions about getting around the island during your stay!