Punta Cana Facts
The Dominican Republic has been a firm favourite Caribbean destination for British holidaymakers who are seeking excellent value for money and a cheaper all inclusive holiday. The island has two main tourist airports which are Puerto Plata that serves the north of the island including the resorts of Cabarete, Cofresi, Playa Dorada, Puerto Plata, Rio San Juan, Samana and Sousa plus Punta Cana in the south which services the more upmarket resorts of Bavaro, Bayahibe, Boca Chico, Juan Dolio, Punta Cana and Uvero Alto.
Blessed with a year round tropical climate with average temperatures of 25c the Dominican Republic really has something for everyone. The north of the island is better for windsurfing but on every major beach you will find a wide range of watersports on offer. For those that love waterparks then a day spent at the Columbus Aquapark which is close to Sosua should fit the bill. If you ever tire of the great beaches then a trip inland will show you the real Dominican with fields full of sugar cane, coffee and cocoa beans.
Vaccinations and health
Vaccination certificates are not required for entry into the country, but vaccinations against Hepatitis A and typhoid are recommended. For those who plan to spend a lot of time outside the main tourist areas, precaution against rabies and polio are also suggested. There is a malaria risk throughout the year. Dengue fever is often prevalent between May and September and travellers are advised to carry mosquito repellent. Travelers should be aware of the high prevalence of HIV virus in the country and should take the relevant precautions. Water in many of the undeveloped areas can be highly contaminated and hence it is safe to drink bottled water only. A few species of fish, including tropical reef fish, could be poisonous or allergic to many and discretion is necessary while consuming sea food. There are good hospitals and medical facilities located in Puerto Plata, Santiago and Santo Domingo. Outside these cities, medical facilities could b limited and finding English speaking staff could be very difficult. Most resorts have doctors that can treat minor medical complaints. Health insurance is highly recommended.
Punta Cana has a tropical climate. The daily temperature barely goes below 25c. Punta Cana does have a rainy season which is normally between June and October. This season can see warm showers, tropical storms and hurricanes. Below is a link to our guide with average temperature and rain fall.
Electricity in Punta Cana is 110-120 volts/50 cycles. American-style two and three-pin (blade) plugs are used. You will need an adaptor if looking to charge your computer or phone.
The currency in Punta Cana is the Dominican peso. US$ are also accepted along with debit & credit cards.
The dialling code in Punta Cana is 00+1 809 from UK.
The time difference is -4 hours (-5 hours in the summer). This means they are behind us by 4 hours.
The official language is Spanish. English is spoken especially around the main tourist areas.
Visa and passport
Currently British holiday makers do not require a visa but it is always worth checking as rules can change. You must have a passport with at least 6 months validity.
Getting to Punta Cana
There are only three airports within the UK that fly to Punta Cana. These are Birmingham, London Gatwick and Manchester. The flight time for direct flights is between 8 and 9 hours.
Punta Cana Transport
Taxis are available everywhere with standardised rates. Rates on the island vary but for the most part, are reasonable. There is also a bus service which is very cheap albeit the journey time can vary. You can also hire a car as Punta Cana has a good network of roads which covers the entire island. Traffic drives on the left. To hire a car you need to be over 25 years of age, been driving longer than 2 years and hold a full license.