Best Area to Stay in Punta Cana – What district to choose in the DR?

Undoubtedly, Punta Cana is the best city for a vacation in the Dominican Republic. And not only we think so, but also more than 4 million tourists who come here every year. Accordingly, it makes this distance the most popular in the Caribbean. But perhaps the most important question for tourists is – what is the best area to stay in Punta Cana?

First of all, the coast is divided up into nine parts: Punta Cana, Bavaro, Cap Cana, Cabeza de Toro, Uvero Alto, Macao, Arena Gorda, Cortecito, Cabo Engano. Therefore, let us take a closer look at the most popular of them, and you can make conclusions which area you like the most.

1. Punta Cana

Punta Cana map

Punta Cana map

In fact, Punta Cana is a small village. Nevertheless, often all parts of the vacation region are called by the same name. Probably the main reason to come to this easternmost region is to enjoy the most stunning beaches and turquoise waters ever. It is a place where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Caribbean Sea. Also, there is the International Airport of Punta Cana in the village, most tourists land here and go to the district they need by car.

One of the best beaches here is Playa Blanca, which is in Punta Cana Resort & Club. Also, the word “blanca” translates as “white” from Spanish. At this point, it explains the white sand on this stunning beach. In addition, it is the closest beach to the airport, there are just about 3 kilometers (2 miles) away.

2. Bávaro

Bávaro Beach

Bávaro Beach

Probably Bávaro is the most famous area in Punta Cana. It is located in La Altagracia province, which is the easternmost province of the Dominican Republic. Also, it is just about 15 minutes from the airport. Bavaro is best known for its luxurious resorts, villas, and the most stunning white-sand beaches. Moreover, it is one of the longest white sand beaches in the Caribbean, and its length is about 48 km (30 mi).

Also, many water excursions leave from Playa Bavaro. It is convenient to go to Saona Island, as transport picks up tourists from Bavaro. And after a short period, you find yourself in paradise, since the island is almost uninhabited, and there is stunning unspoiled nature. Moreover, this island is the Dominican Republic’s most important nesting site for turtles.

Originally, the Bavaro area was a town for resort workers, but when hotels started to rise along the coast, it became the main resort area of Punta Cana. There is a huge number of accommodations, pubs, restaurants, and bars with a tropical vibe. Despite its popularity, you will have the opportunity to be on the beach in a secluded spot. The reason for this is that most hotels have a private beach access with all the amenities you need. So, many people think that it makes Bavaro one of the best areas to stay in Punta Cana.

3. Cap Cana

Cap Cana area

Cap Cana area

The distance between Cap Cana and Punta Cana International Airport is about 10 kilometers. This area has one of the best golf courses and world-class resorts. Especially Punta Espada Golf Course, the course has a complex and unique shape, surrounded by the ocean. Moreover, it is one of the newest offerings in the Dominican Republic resort areas.

So, there is the explanation why there are many modern properties and equipped beaches. There is also the famous Scape Park in Cap Cana. It offers you thrilling adventures, jumping from water zip lines, swimming in underground caves, and much more.

Well, the most popular beach in Cap Cana is Playa Juanillo, which has public access, but security may ask you for your ID. Accordingly, they thus guarantee safety for visitors. Usually, the water is calm, so it is perfect for spending your time with kids.

4. Macao

Macao Beach

Macao Beach

It is located about 40 minutes from Punta Cana International Airport in the province of La Altagracia. Playa Macao has public access. This is one of the few areas where the coastline is not completely packed with 5-star hotels. Thus, you can spend time sunbathing under the Caribbean sun in seclusion. That is why there is a lot of free space, so it is one of the favorite beaches for locals too.

Moreover, if you like doing watersports – it is the perfect spot for you. Macao is the only beach in Punta Cana where you can go surfing. Why? The reason is that usually on other beaches water is too calm for doing it. So, this one has swells and perfect conditions for surfing. In addition, many people think that the restaurants on this side of Punta Cana have the best fish plates.

5. Uvero Alto

 Uvero Alto Beach

Uvero Alto Beach

Well, this resort area is located at the north end of Punta Cana in the province of La Altagracia. We have to mention that mass tourism has not reached Uvero Alto, so it has something that you can explore. Some parts are untouched, so you have a great opportunity to stroll along the beautiful coastline. But you should also expect that some parts of the beach are not well maintained, and you can see seaweed on the shore.

Nevertheless, Uvero Alto is a perfect place if you do not like a crowd. Sometimes, there are can be rocks underfoot, but workers try to take them off. The sand is not as soft as in Bavaro, but it makes the beach perfect for walking along the coastline.

6. Cabeza de Toro

Cabeza de Toro

Cabeza de Toro

This small town is settled between Punta Cana and Bavaro. Playa Cabeza de Toro has the “Blue flag”. So, the water is calm, and it is perfect for diving and fishing. Moreover, there are many traditional fishermen in this area that come to the beach daily.

At this point, there are many good fish restaurants with fresh catch. In addition, “Cabeza de Toro” translates as “bull head” from Spanish. And the reason for that is that the shore outline actually looks like a bull head. The beach is almost empty, but there is seaweed thrown by the surf.

There are few hotels in Cabeza de Toro. All of them have an all-inclusive system, so you can enjoy sipping a cocktail while watching the beautiful view of the ocean. In addition, this town is close to the most popular resort places of Bavaro and Punta Cana, so tourists often stay at several resorts.

7. Arena Gorda

Arena Gorda Beach

Arena Gorda Beach, September 2021

Probably it is one of the widest beaches in the Dominican Republic. Well, Arena Gorda is situated south of Playa El Macao and north of Playa Bavaro. The east coast beach has Blue Flag certification status. The territory is guarded, it is pleasant to walk along the beach, as the sand is white and clean, and the water is calm and crystal clear. It is also a safe beach to bring your kids to.

There are many luxury hotels, so the crowd factor is from medium to high. As you can see, Playa Arena Gorda is one of the most favorite beaches with tourists because of the number of activities you can do there such as kayaking, sailing, snorkeling, and much more. There are no public bathrooms, just for guests of the resort. So, if you are not a guest of one of the resorts, then it is best to stay at the Kukua Restaurant and Beach Club.

8. El Cortecito

This is a great place to shop because there are many stores with popular Dominican souvenirs that you can bring home. The culture of the Dominican Republic is interesting, which is why tourists always want to bring something from here.

One of the most popular things to buy here is rum. The country is known for its high-quality rum exports. The taste is smooth, because of the natural process of distillation and aging. So, this is a reason why rum has a unique flavor.

In addition, we recommend you try the coffee here. Well, Dominican coffee ranked as one of the best in the world. There are many areas where coffee is grown, and arabica beans are grown here the most. At this point, do not lose the opportunity to try something new that country is known for.

El Cortecito is a small fishing village, which is also a part of Bávaro’s main beach. It is also famous for being one of the best fishing spots. Therefore, it is not surprising that many tourists say that this is one of the best places to taste delicious national cuisine. So, do not miss a perfect opportunity to try lobster or fresh fish in one of the local restaurants. Usually, the water is calm on the beach, you can do snorkeling, kayaking, paddleboarding, or just sunbathing.

Playa El Cortecito

Playa El Cortecito

9. Cabo Engano

And the last our area is Cabo Engano, which is also in the region of La Altagracia. Well, there are no resorts on the beach, that is why you should go there only privately in a motor vehicle. Probably it is because of the rocks and dangerous reefs.

The beach is isolated, and you can reach it only by dirt road. So, if you do not want to see people on the beach at all, then this is the perfect place for you. But remember that this area is not equipped for a comfortable pastime for tourists, and there are no hotels here.

Cabo Engano

Cabo Engano

Punta Cana areas comparison

We have prepared a short comparison of the highlights for each area of Punta Cana.
You can take a quick look at the table below for a better understanding.

Popularity Beaches Hotels
Punta Cana It is a small village, but the name Punta Cana is most often referred to as all other parts of the region, which are more popular Beautiful and calm water Since the territory is small, there are not many hotels here, but they are well-equipped
Bávaro The most popular area in Punta Cana Stunning white-sand beaches with turquoise water A lot of luxury hotels with the best service and equipment
Cap Cana One of the most popular districts, and one of the newest resort areas Stunning white-sand beaches with turquoise water Not as many hotels as in Bavaro, but they have the best services and equipment
Macao One of the most popular areas Stunning and spacious beaches, which are also perfect for water sports The one of the few areas where the coastline is not completely packed with 5-star hotels
Uvero Alto Well, mass tourism has not reached the area Some parts are untouched, so there is beautiful coastline. Sometimes, there are can be rocks underfoot and the sand is not that soft There are some parts of the beach are not well maintained. Since the place is not so popular, accordingly, there are much fewer housing options
Cabeza de Toro There are not many tourists in Cabeza de Toro The water is calm, and it is perfect for diving and fishing There are few hotels. They have an all-inclusive system. There are also many good fish restaurants with fresh fish catch
Arena Gorda The crowd factor here is from medium to high It is one of the widest beaches in the Dominican Republic. The east coast beach has Blue Flag certification status There are many luxury hotels here
El Cortecito This small fishing village is also a part of Bávaro’s main beach, but there are not that many people here The area is famous for being one of the best fishing spots. That is why there are many fish restaurants on this fabulously white beach There are many stores with popular Dominican souvenirs. There are also good hotels
Cabo Engano It is not popular because you can go there only privately in a motor vehicle. The beach is isolated, and you can reach it only by dirt road There are can be rocks and dangerous reefs There are no resorts on the beach


Where to stay in Punta Cana?

In our opinion, the best place to stay in the Dominican is a private place. What does it mean? Without a doubt, the best option is to rent a villa or an apartment. Such a vacation in a different country will help you feel not only the atmosphere of a vacation, but also living in the Dominican Republic. Accordingly, it is a perfect way to go deeper and plunge into the atmosphere of the country.

By renting a villa, you get a large private area and complete freedom. At this point, you can choose a view of the ocean, the garden or the golf course. Many villas provide the best 5-star services. You can also order the services of a personal chef, who will prepare meals according to your personally drawn-up meal plan. It is also the best way to try delicious national cuisine. In addition, our company only has properties in secured and gated areas, where you can enjoy privacy.

This option is perfect for newlyweds on their honeymoon, as well as for families, and big groups of friends. Usually, the capacity of a villa is from 6 to 16 people. The main advantage is that you do not need to share your accommodation with strangers like in a hotel. Also, you do not need to wake up at a specific time to have breakfast.

You can gather all your company at one table. Usually, the villas have their own pools, so you also do not have to queue for a sun lounger in the crowd. So, there is just you and complete freedom. What else can you dream of?

Is it expensive to rent a property in the DR?

This is a common misconception among many people. Actually, it depends on many factors such as type of the accommodation, location, capacity, and services. In addition, you can read the more detailed information in the article where we have already written about the cost of rentals in Punta Cana.

Without a doubt, villas are more expensive than apartments. And the reason for it is that a villa gives you much more privacy with your own territory and freedom. You can have your own garden, balcony, pool, and jacuzzi. Nevertheless, renting with us, you can get a property for a reasonable price. Our company offers the best options depends on your budget. Moreover, you can always be sure that features such as stunning views and the tropical nature of the Dominican Republic will be visible from any place you stay.

We have to mention that a hotel vacation is different from a villa vacation. Why? Because in the villa you can get the same all-inclusive with 5-star services as in the hotel, but all of it will be focused just on you, and not other people. That is why it is highly likely that all your desires will be taken into account. So, you can rent a villa from US$ 250 per night, and the average price for renting a villa per night is about US$ 950. It is even easier with renting apartments, as prices start at around US$ 65. And the average price for renting an apartment is about US$ 200.

How can you save money when you rent a villa?

  • First of all, if you are already reading it you can save some money. How? The reason is that you are on our website, so through it, you can book directly with the owner and save up to 15% on commissions due to other booking platforms charging a fee. So half of the work is already done, do not waste time your time on other platforms!
  • Secondly, long-term rentals allow you to save up to 35%. So, what does it give you? It gives you an opportunity to stay in the stunning villa longer. And it allows you to rent a villa for almost half the price. Does not it sound like a paradise?
  • Thirdly, you can rent a villa with services included. You can get a maid and a private chef, that will tidy up and cook the best dishes just for you. These services save you not just money, but also your precious time. Is not it better to go swimming in the ocean and sunbathe on a sun lounger in your free time than to clean up and cook at home?

As you can see, our team can offer you the best options and conditions for an affordable price. We have quite a lot of experience in the Dominican Republic market, so we know a lot of the intricacies of many things here. The wishes of our guests are important to us. This is why we always try to do our best. Do not hesitate, be sure that we will help you make your trip to the best area of Punta Cana an unforgettable experience!

Updated on: . Author:


Subscribe to our news! Stay always in touch. Get fresh news and offers

Get a free consultation!

    Contact Us