About the Dominican Republic
The wild, natural beauty of the Dominican Republic is everything you want in a tropical Caribbean island. Lines of palm trees lean over stretches of sand, reaching back to where the coast becomes jungle. The string of beach resorts earned the nickname the ‘Coconut Coast’, based on the vision of coconut palms lining the beaches. The country’s tropical scenery creates plenty of attractions of its own, with thick jungles alive with rare birds, sat beside manicured championship golf courses. Whether you’re a beach lover or keen to learn more about the island’s culture, a dedicated golfer or an underwater explorer, you’ll be spoilt for choice on your Dominican Republic holidays.
25-28 °C The Dominican Republic is warm and sunny throughout the year, although the mountainous areas of the island are significantly wetter and cooler. There’s a fair amount of rainfall even in coastal areas, although this is normally only brief and light so you should be able to dodge the showers. You'll find it's dry, sunny and calm most of the time.
Approximately 9 hours from the UK. Fly to Punta Cana International Airport.
If you’re interested in jetting off on a Dominican Republic holiday, you’re sure to find the perfect resort for you. Whether you’re looking to relax on the shores of a secluded fishing village or dive in and try your hand at snorkelling, there are wonderful beaches and turquoise blue waves to paddle in all along the coast. There’s also plenty to do here after the sun sets too, as the nightlife in the Dominican Republic is second to none. Head to one of the glitzy clubs or lose yourself in some traditional Bachata rhythms at one of the local bars; it’s up to you.
If you're spending your holiday in the Puerto Plata area, you'll find plenty of things to see, from the 16thcentury Spanish fort of Fortaleza San Felipe to the amazing Ocean World Adventure Park.
In Santo Domingo, spend some time at the Dominican Republic National Aquarium. Families can also visit the Museo Infantil Trampolín, an interactive children's museum with excellent exhibits on the country’s history, science, ecosystems and culture.
If you're a beach lover, holidays to Dominican Republic are your answer. This is one of the main reasons why people travel so far to come here, especially in winter, and you'll find endless, spotlessly-clean white sands all around the island. Punta Cana has over 20 miles of beaches with luxury hotels and restaurants, while the Samana peninsula's beaches are great for watching migrating humpback whales between January and March.
One of the most impressive natural attractions to explore is the Los Haitises National Park, a stunning mangrove forest with rare bird and mammal species. Explore its caves and caverns on an organised tour, although you’ll have to book in advance as tourist numbers are capped to protect the park's habitats and wildlife. In the Bávaro area of Punta Cana, you'll find spectacular coral reefs where the water is calm and ideal for swimming and snorkelling.
Food and drink
The food is influenced by Caribbean, Spanish, Middle-Eastern and African cuisine, so if you're a foodie you’re in for a real treat. Lunch is the main meal of the day, which often includes red beans, meat, chicken or fish, rice and a salad. Try a scrumptious Sancocho stew with seven meats, pineapple-filled Dominican cake, and a Caribbean cocktail like rum punch or mojito.
RESORTS IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
HOLIDAYS IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Safety and Security
For up to date advice on travelling to the Dominican Republic, please visit Safety and security - Dominican Republic travel advice
Dominican Republic is best for...
Nature enthusiasts:From jungle adventures to coral reef trips, holidays to Dominican Republic are perfect for lovers of nature.
Beach lovers: The beaches on the eastern coast are among the finest in the Caribbean, with picture-perfect emerald water and white sands overlooked by palm trees.
Bar-hoppers: If you're choosing Punta Cana for your holiday you can party in its stunning clubs and concert venues.
Language: The language spoken is Spanish. However, English is widely spoken, especially in tourist destinations and hotels, so you'll have little difficulty getting around. Still, if you'd like to impress the locals with your Spanish, buy a phrasebook or download a language app and start practicing.
Currency: The currency used in the Dominican Republic is the Dominican Peso.
Local time: The Dominican Republic is 5 hours behind GMT/UK time.
Fly to: Punta Cana International Airport. Transfer time from the airport to the main resort of Punta Cana is about 40 minutes.
Flight time from UK: The flight time to the Dominican Republic is 9 hours.
Tourist information: Further tourist information can be found by clicking here (Dominican Republic Tourism Official Website - GoDominicanRepublic.com)
Visa and health: Before you travel, visit Dominican Republic travel advice for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday.
Weather and climate
With an average temperature of 27°C throughout the year, it’s always swimsuit weather in the Dominican Republic. Enjoy the highest temperatures at the peak of the summer, from June to October, but be prepared for more chance of tropical rain if you take your holiday at this time. If you prefer cooler weather, book your holiday for winter or early spring, when humidity is lower and temperatures hover between 25°C and 27°C. In Punta Cana, average annual sunshine hours are just over 3,000, which is more than twice what you'd expect in London, and temperatures at the resort rarely fall below 21°C at night. Puerto Plata tends to receive more rainfall, slightly higher daytime temperatures, and somewhat more pleasant night-time temperatures than Punta Cana, with lows of around 18°C from December to March.
By car: Car hire is a good option if you’re planning a lot of day trips, giving you the freedom to come and go as you like. The coastal roads provide wonderful drives, and driving makes resort-hopping a lot easier. Hire car companies are based mainly at the airport.
By taxi: Taxi ranks are on hand at hotels, airports, and some attractions. They are ideal for one-off journeys, although make sure you check the cab fare before you set off.
By bus: The local bus service is the Bavaro Express, a regular service providing an affordable way of getting between beaches. The service also runs between neighbouring resorts like Bavaro and Punta Cana, which is convenient if you're not planning to hire a car.
Traditional celebration:In August, the traditional Festival of the Bulls takes place, with long processions complete with cowboys herding cattle.
The legendary Carnival: February sees the Carnival come to town, meaning huge parades, outlandish costumes, and lots of dancing. The Dominican Republic Carnival also includes the country’s Independence Day, on February 27th.
New Year’s Eve: The Dominican Republic is a fantastic place to see in the New Year, with a full-on Caribbean celebration in Santo Domingo, featuring hundreds of fireworks at midnight, plus partying into the early hours.