La Romana VS Punta Cana

The Dominican Republic is the most visited destination in the Caribbean. It attracts more than 6.5 million tourists every year. Clean, white-sand beaches and turquoise water seduce you immediately. After seeing beautiful pictures from the Dominican Republic, you naturally want to go there on vacation. But here is the problem, what is the area to choose? For a lot of people, it is hard to make a decision La Romana or Punta Cana.

Both destinations are popular and have their own advantages. We will not deny the fact that it is hard to choose between them. Nevertheless, we have decided to write this article to help you with a choice.

General information about both destinations

First of all, we know that budget can be a deciding factor for many people. We should note that Punta Cana has hotels and other types of accommodation for every budget and taste. So, that is why we cannot say that Punta Cana is more expensive than La Romana. Here are just way more hotels to choose from. La Romana does not have many, so probably that is why people more often choose Punta Cana.

Punta Cana

Well, the distance between Punta Cana and La Romana is about 62 km, which is equal to 39 miles. Punta Cana is the most popular resort town in the Dominican Republic. About 4 million tourists come here every year. Probably, the reason why people love this place so much is the beaches. After all, this is the case when the pictures do not lie. Coming here, you feel like the main character of the movie “Blue Lagoon”.

Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana

Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana

La Romana

La Romana is a city and port, southeastern Dominican Republic. This place is one of the country’s top destination picks. La Romana is way smaller and does not have that many hotels as Punta Cana. However, it offers stunning beaches, calm water, and a convenient location from which you can quickly reach the main attractions. La Romana Casa De Campo International Airport is approximately 6.8 km from the city. Also, you can get there from Punta Cana International Airport, and the distance from this airport to La Romana is short enough.

Сatalina Island, La Romana

Сatalina Island, La Romana

The beaches in La Romana & Punta Cana

There is some difference between beaches of these destinations. Punta Cana is located on the Atlantic coast, and La Romana is on the Caribbean coast. Punta Cana has most areas with calm water and some with rougher waves. So, it makes doing watersports in Punta Cana possible. Nevertheless, the water is usually too calm for surfing.

But the good thing that it is safe for kids swimming in the ocean. So, the best beach for watersports in Punta Cana is Macao Beach. In addition, the average water temperature in La Romana is about 1-2 degrees higher. And the water is usually calm there. Let us take a look at the best beaches in both places.

Popular La Romana beaches

  • Playa Minitas Beach. This is one of the best beaches in La Romana. It is also a good option for water sports such as snorkeling. Moreover, you can rent a pedal boating or kayaking.
  • Playa Bayahibe Beach. It is located to the southeast of La Romana. There are not a lot of people on the beach, so it is a paradise for people who like privacy. The only time when there can be a lot of people is when excursions go from this beach. Also, it is a perfect place for fishing and diving.
  • Playa Dominicus Beach. The interesting fact, it was the first beach in the Caribbean that got “Blue Flag”. There are many beautiful corals here. That is why Dominicus is the favorite one among divers. The water is calm, so it is easy to explore.
  • Playa El Caletón. This is the beach, which locals often visit. So, it has public access. If you like to learn more about the culture and the locals, this beach is worth a visit. Here you will see how the Dominicans spend their free time. There also may be vendors on the beach, but people say they are not intrusive.

Popular beaches in Punta Cana

  • Macao Beach (Playa Macao). This beach is the best one for watersports in Punta Cana. It is known for its swells and perfect conditions for surfing. Moreover, locals like to go to Playa Macao too. And it is considered that restaurants on this side of Punta Cana have the best fishplates.
  • Bavaro Beach (Playa Bavaro). Well, it is the most popular one. Moreover, it is one of the longest white sand beaches in the Caribbean. Length is 48 km (30 mi). There are many pubs, restaurants, resorts, so it is also the most developed resort area in Punta Cana. In addition, many water excursions leave from Playa Bavaro.
  • Playa Los Corales. It is about 20-minutes from the Punta Cana International Airport. Therefore, if right after landing you are impatient to swim – you need to come here. Los Corales is located in Bavaro, and there are also many rentals, restaurants, spa services. The atmosphere on the beach is always pleasant and fun. Since the beach is large, you can enjoy the space and not the crowds.
  • Playa Blanca. This beach has white sand and the stunning color of the water. Moreover, the water is shallow enough. So, if you cannot swim, or you have kids, you can be calm! The beach has all the amenities, including umbrellas and sun loungers. Also, Playa Blanca is small, but it has a European Blue Flag for cleanliness and quality.

The atmosphere and vibe comparison

  • Well, Punta Cana is family-oriented but at the same time has a vibrant nightlife. You can find a lot of hotels, including for adults only. People come there for the luxury vacation Punta Cana can provide for you. There are also a lot of restaurants, malls, bars, pubs. If we are talking about all-inclusive resorts here, they surpass La Romana.
  • La Romana does not have such a huge selection of hotels and restaurants like Punta Cana. There are also no that expensive, and luxurious hotels in La Romana like in Punta Cana. So, it can be not that touristy and with less nightlife there. There is also calm water, that is why you will not be able to do some watersports here such as surfing. But it has crystal blue water and amazing coral reefs, so it is just perfect for snorkeling and diving.

Attractions in Punta Cana & La Romana

Since both directions are in the Dominican Republic, you can reach any point of interest, no matter where you are staying. If you plan on doing a lot of excursions outside your resort, La Romana is in a better position. Many significant places in the Dominican Republic are faster to reach if you go from La Romana. For example, the distance from Punta Cana to Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic, is approximately 195 kilometers. And from La Romana is about 125 kilometers. As you can see, the difference is not huge.

Punta Cana attractions

We perfectly understand the people who choose Punta Cana for their holidays every year. Why? Probably because of the variety of what this town has to offer you. You can get vibrant nightlife in the best clubs on the beach, complete relaxation and privacy, active excursions, water sports – all these in one place. Let us take a look at the most visited destinations in this area.

  • Hoyo Azul Lagoon. This is one of the most popular destinations to visit near Punta Cana. It is a natural pool with turquoise waters, located at the foot of a cliff. Usually, tours include a brief hike and a swim in the crystal clear water, but you can also book a zip line tour.
  • Reserva Ecológica Ojos Indígenas. This is another popular excursion here. Well, this is a private protected area operated by the Grupo Puntacana Foundation. It is a forest with twelve stunning lagoons, and you can swim in five of them. By the way, “ojos” translates as “eyes”, so this unique place was named “Ojos Indígenas” or “Indigenous Eyes” because of the lagoons’ shape.
  • Redonda Mountain (Montaña Redonda). The mountain is surrounded by the nature of the countryside. This is the best option for people who like hiking or being active during the vacation. Moreover, people often overeat while on vacation, so this is a great opportunity to burn a few calories. In addition, taking this excursion, you will visit Macao Beach, which is considered one of the best beaches in the Dominican Republic.

La Romana sights

La Romana is an area where many excursion companies bring visitors on day trips from Punta Cana. Moreover, a huge number of the country’s main attractions are located near this area.

  • Saona Island. It is easy to get here from La Romana. Saona Island is one of the most favorite tourists excursions in the Dominican Republic. And the reason for this is that this is a genuine Caribbean paradise. It is almost uninhabited, and there is stunning unspoiled nature. Also, this island is the Dominican Republic’s most important nesting site for turtles.
  • Cueva de las Maravillas (Cave of Wonders). It is a must-see excursion in La Romana. This is a national park, where the cave system contains hundreds of well-preserved pictograms and petroglyphs. Cave of Wonders is a place where you can see the wonderful historic Taino paintings. It is the perfect opportunity to get away from the dreamy beaches and immerse yourself in the culture of the Dominican Republic.
  • Isla Catalina. This dreamy island is knowing for being the perfect place for doing water sports such as snorkeling and diving. So, Catalina’s waters are abundant in coral reefs. You can enjoy crystal clean water and white sand beach there. It is also one of the destinations for cruise ships on Caribbean routes. The interesing fact that island was baptized “Santa Catalina” by Christopher Columbus.

The weather comparison in both destinations

  • The warmest months in Punta Cana are July, August, and September. The average temperature in these months is 32 °C (91 °F). In La Romana the warmest months are June, July, and August. And the average temperature is about 34 °C (93.5 °F). So, it is warmer here, do not forget to grab your SPF cream.
  • The coldest month in Punta Cana is January, with the highest temperature of 29 °C (84.2 °F), and an average low temperature is 21 °C (69.8 °F). January is also the coldest month in La Romana, with an average high temperature of 28 °C (82.4 °F) and an average low temperature of 21.9 °C (71.4 °F).
  • The months with the warmest water temperature in Punta Cana are August, September, and October. With an average temperature of 31 °C (87.8 °F). The months with the warmest water temperature in La Romana are the same as in Punta Cana. But the average temperature here is 31.2 °C (88.2 °F).
  • The rainiest months in Punta Cana are July, August, and September, with an average amount of rainy days of 7 days per month. In La Romana, the rainiest months are August, September, and October. There are about 9 rainy days per month.

Where to stay in Punta Cana and La Romana?

Well, if you prefer privacy and freedom to noise and crowds, we recommend that you rent a villa or apartment, and not just a hotel room. Our company has the best properties in Punta Cana and La Romana. All our rentals are only in secure and private areas.

Renting an apartment is a convenient option because you get modern accommodation for a reasonable price. By the way, the average price for an apartment is about US$ 150. The price depends on the number of rooms, capacity, location, and amenities. Usually, tourists want to have an ocean view. Just imagine, you wake up in oceanfront apartment in Punta Cana, and with a cup of coffee, you go to the balcony and enjoy the beautiful view and the sound of the ocean. Is not it a paradise?

The relaxed atmosphere of the Dominican Republic makes you want even more freedom and privacy. And the best way to get it is renting a villa. Booking it with us, you get a lot of personal space. That is why it is also a perfect option for a big group of people. Why? You do not have to share the place with strangers or live far from each other, as in a hotel.

You can enjoy the vacation with people you love. In general, prices for villas range from US$ 250 to US$ 5000 per night. So, it means that you can choose a villa for any budget. You can get 5-star services, including private chef and maid, ocean view, or garden view – whatever your heart desires.

For example, this stunning luxury villa Waterfall is located in Cocotal Golf and Country Club, which is a gated community. Modern design, golf course view, and services give you a dose of relaxation. The price for this dreamy villa is US$ 1684. Another option is to stay in the perfect villa with a huge pool and jacuzzi in La Romana. You will have 5-star services, a lot of personal space. In our opinion, villas are the best way to have an unforgettable experience in the Dominican Republic.

How to rent cheaper in both destinations?

We have two options to make your living in Punta Cana or La Romana both comfortable and affordable.

  • The first option is a long-term rental. It gives you an opportunity to save up to 35%. So, it means that you can get the same villa for almost half the price. At this point, you can easily afford to live in the Dominican Republic for a long period for a reasonable price.
  • The second option is the easiest one. All you need – is our website. Through it, you can book directly with the owner and save up to 15% on commissions due to other booking platforms (such as Airbnb, VRBO, Expedia, and others) charging a fee.

So, where to spend your vacation in the DR –
in La Romana or in Punta Cana?

When comparing Punta Cana and La Romana, the biggest difference here is the location of these resort towns. The thing is that they belong to different coasts. Punta Cana is on the Atlantic coast, while La Romana is on the Caribbean coast. They are both perfect destinations if you would like to discover the Dominican Republic. After all our discussion, we would like to point out some main advantages of each destination.

  • Well, if you want a luxury holiday with all the best amenities, vibrant nightlife, shopping, Punta Cana is the best option for you. It has stunning white sand beaches with turquoise water. Usually, the water is calm, so it is perfect for swimming with kids. Moreover, if you want to do water sports, you can go to Macao Beach, which is one of the best beaches in the DR. Last but not least, more than 4 million foreign visitors come to Punta Cana every year.
  • La Romana is also a strong competitor for Punta Cana. It has dreamy beaches and a perfect location. You can easily get to one of the main attractions of the Dominican Republic from here. And most importantly, many of them are located just minutes from La Romana. There are not so many hotels and restaurants like in Punta Cana, but it has its own atmosphere. Due to the small number of hotels, there are fewer tourists here, so you have more opportunities to meet locals. At this point, you can immerse yourself in the culture of the Dominican Republic more. In addition, the water here is calm enough, and the temperature is 1-2 degrees higher. Unfortunately, you cannot do surfing here because of the calm water, but it is perfect for snorkeling and swimming.

We have also prepared a small table below. You can see there the main points that we discussed in detail in the article.

Summary comparison of both destinations

Punta Cana La Romana
High season From October to April From October to April
Water 28 °C (82.8 °F) 29 °C (84.6 °F)
Hotels The huge amount of them Not so many
Prices For any budget For any budget, but there are no super luxury offers
Beaches Clean and white sand beaches with clear water Clean and white sand beaches with clear water

Regardless of which one you choose, we are sure that your vacation will be unforgettable. After all, resting in the Dominican Republic cannot be otherwise. Anyway, we look forward to welcoming you here!

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