All-Inclusive Spanish Colonial–Style Resort Along Caribbean Sea
On the easternmost tip of the Dominican Republic, Punta Cana entices visitors with miles of white, sandy beaches virtually untouched by tourists. It’s part of la Costa del Coco, or the Coconut Coast, a string of sunny locales along the Caribbean Sea. Within this laid-back community lies the Spanish Colonial–style Sanctuary Cap Cana resort, which is made up of low-lying buildings with red tiled roofs, marble floors, and arched pillars. There are five swimming pools, including one filled with salt water, all surrounded by palm trees and thatched-roof palapas.
For dining, you can choose from five onsite restaurants with offerings ranging from fresh seafood at the ocean-side Blue Marlin to pan-Asian fusion at Wok and grilled steaks at The Steakhouse. At night, you can divide your time among the property’s lounges, including a piano bar and an oceanfront watering hole. Spacious junior suites are equipped with flat-screen TVs, in-suite climate control, and mini bars that are refreshed daily with bottled water, soft drinks, and domestic beer for those on the all-inclusive plan.
Play a round on one of the two nearby Jack Nicklaus signature golf courses—one of them, Punta Espada, has garnered a slew of awards and special recognitions. Golfweek magazine has named it the best golf course in the Caribbean for the last four years in a row. Punta Espada’s 13th hole is one of a kind, requiring a 249-yard shot over water to a peninsular hole surrounded by the Caribbean Sea.
Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: Miles of White-Sand Beaches
When Christopher Columbus landed on the Dominican Republic more than five centuries ago, he described it as "a beautiful island paradise." Punta Cana, located on the island's easternmost tip, lays legitimate claim to that description. The coast stretches for more than 20 miles and is dotted with coconut palms, chaise longues, and laid-back bars. Glitzy resorts feature prominently along the shoreline, but Playa El Cortecito, a short drive up the coast, harks back to earlier times. Brightly colored, thatched-roof shacks line the beach, and local fishermen still bring their boats to shore each afternoon with the day's catch.