Punta Cana is the most popular destination in the Dominican Republic, attracting nearly 70% of the island’s annual tourist population. That should be no wonder, considering the area is home to more than 30 spectacular beaches.
With so little time, you may not be able to hit them all. But you can get the highlights from the best beaches in Punta Cana. Here are four options to consider for sunbathing, surfing, swimming, and sight-seeing.
1. Bavaro Beach
If you’re looking for things to do in Punta Cana, why not start your trip with a visit to the best beach destination in the Dominican Republic, if not the world. Also known as Playa Bavaro, this area allows beachgoers to enjoy pristine white-sand beaches, towering palms, and dazzling azure waters.
Due to its location on a bay, Bavaro Beach’s calm and temperature waters make it the perfect place for swimming, water-skiing, and fishing when you aren’t sunbathing on the sands. The only downside is that this beach is crowded during high seasons.
2. Juanillo Beach
Juanillo Beach, locally known as Playa Juanillo, offers miles and miles of scenic white sands. The beach is so large that it is easier to find a secluded area for couples and large groups. With its shallow, calm waters, this beach is also ideal for families with young children.
Another thing to love about Juanillo Beach is its proximity to urban life. Beachgoers are only steps away from local restaurants, casinos, and luxury hotels. The beach is also near the Indigenous Eyes ecological reserve, a great place to see the native wildlife up close and in person.
3. Macao Beach
Playa Macao, also known as Macao Beach, is the place to be if you are hunting for surf spots. This beach is such a popular place for surfing that there is a surf school local to the area. Whether you are a seasoned pro or a surfing newbie, you can hone your skills here.
Surfing spectators can also enjoy the area, as this beach is less crowded than others in Punta Cana. It is a public beach, too, meaning you may run into some of the locals. The only con to Playa Macao is that it can be extremely windy, and the waves are only suitable for seasoned swimmers.
4. Cabeza de Toro Beach
Playa Cabeza de Toro, which translates to Bull’s Head Beach, is a secluded beach offering a glimpse of Punta Cana’s untouched beauty. The area is speckled with thick coconut groves that provide plenty of shade for sunbathers and sight-seers.
Bull’s Head Beach is also close to a tourist-friendly village. Visit for a taste of local life or to shop at one of the many artisanal shops in the area. The only reason to avoid this beach is on days when currents are high and the local algae population clogs the shoreline.
These Are the Best Beaches in Punta Cana
The best beaches in Punta Cana offer something for everyone, whether you are looking for beautiful scenery, seclusion, surfing, or sunbathing. Keep this list handy while planning your vacation itinerary.
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