Now I have been traveling all my life. I have been to the Caribbean a million times on cruises, but I have never stayed there for an extended amount of time. In all honesty, I am a Mexico girl. I love the water and beaches, the service and the resorts all at a very reasonable price. I go to there about twice a year and I don’t think it gets much better than Mexico.
But working at Delta Vacations, I kept hearing how beautiful Punta Cana was and I saw how popular it has become over the last few years. I saw Sean’s blogs , videos and Facebook and Twitter post about Punta Cana, so I thought, let’s give it a try.
And boy I am glad that I did. It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. We stayed at the Barceló Bavaro Palace Deluxe and the resort is on one the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen. Bavaro Beach seems to stretch for miles and miles. The waters were aqua green and blue and the sand was like powder. There were lots of palm trees for shade when we needed it.
My favorite part is that we didn’t have to get up early and go out and “save” our chairs. We would head out to the beach around 10am every day, and there were no issues finding a chair. At one point, I looked around and realized that we were some of the only people out on the beach. The hotel was full, so I am not sure where everyone was, maybe at lunch. But I didn’t care because it was so peaceful and relaxing.
In comparing Mexico with Punta Cana, this is what I have found:
- Resorts – a lot of the same resorts that you find in Mexico are now in Punta Cana. You have Barcelo, Riu, Iberostar, Melia, Zoetry, Gran Behia and Paradisus just to name a few. If you like these resorts in Mexico chances are you are going to like them in Punta Cana. The Barceló Bavaro Palace Deluxe had the same feel as the one in the Riviera Maya but with local touches. I found the same great service, food and activities.
- Activities outside the resort – there didn’t seem to be as much to do outside of the resort. If you are a person that likes to go out and explore the town and find local restaurants and shopping, I didn’t find much of it. But, I did find everything that I needed at the resort. There was lots of shopping there – a whole mall. Also tons of restaurants and bars including a huge disco, cigar bar, sports bar and they even had a casino.
- As far as excursions, there also had a ton of options. It didn’t seem like as much as destinations in Mexico, but still enough to keep you busy and entertained for weeks – snorkeling, catamarans, zip lining, ATV tours and deep sea fishing just to name a few.
- Airport – I think the destination is getting used to it being so popular. With our arrival, we didn’t have any issues heading through immigration and customs and heading out to our transfers. One way back, the airport was BUSY. I think it is something you just need to be aware of. It is not a big airport at all – in fact, it’s an open air palapa. We had to wait in line for quite a long time to check-in, but the transfer company knows this and got us there in plenty of time(keep in mind I traveled during peak spring break time). You just need to be patient.
Once we got into the terminal, it was crowded, but lots of restaurants and shops. There is even a little area next to gate 4 where you can go out and look at the runway and see all the planes. They are really quite close.
So in the end, I still love Mexico and will go back often – but I won’t mind heading to Punta Cana a few more times as well.
– Missy from Delta Vacations