Destinations Directory

Flight Deals to Santo Domingo

$253+ Aug 18 – Aug 27 EWR – SDQ View Deal
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$285+ Aug 18 – Aug 30 EWR – SDQ View Deal
$285+ Aug 25 – Aug 30 EWR – SDQ View Deal
$286+ Aug 24 – Aug 27 EWR – SDQ View Deal

Santo Domingo Beach Hotel

TAU Casa Reyes
$1+ per night Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Aparta Hotel Drake Piantini
$1+ per night Restaurant Refrigerator Microwave Kitchenette Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Dona Elvira Boutique Hotel
$1+ per night Restaurant Swimming pool Bar / Lounge Cable / Satellite TV Pool Outdoor View Deals
Ramada by Wyndham Princess Santo Domingo
$1+ per night High-speed Internet Fitness Room/Gym Restaurant Parking Swimming pool Cable / Satellite TV Pool Indoor Pool Outdoor Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Carey House Hotel
$1+ per night Restaurant View Deals
Hostal San Francisco de Asis
$1+ per night Restaurant Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Hotel Luis V
$1+ per night Swimming pool Refrigerator Cable / Satellite TV View Deals
Hotel Renacer
$1+ per night Swimming pool Cable / Satellite TV Pool Outdoor Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Hotel Jade Santo Domingo
$1+ per night Parking Cable / Satellite TV Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Antiguo Hotel Europa
$1+ per night High-speed Internet Restaurant Parking Bar / Lounge Cable / Satellite TV View Deals
Aarony House
$1+ per night Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Napolitano Hotel
$1+ per night High-speed Internet Restaurant Parking Swimming pool Pool Outdoor Free Wi-Fi View Deals
TAU Casa Conde
$2+ per night Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Casa Sanchez Boutique Hotel
$2+ per night Swimming pool Pool Indoor Pool Outdoor Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Weston Suites Hotel
$2+ per night High-speed Internet Fitness Room/Gym Restaurant Swimming pool Bar / Lounge Pool Indoor Free Wi-Fi View Deals
Luca Hotel
$2+ per night High-speed Internet Swimming pool View Deals

Best Beaches in Santo Domingo

1. Boca Chica

City Beach for All

Located about 20 miles from the bustling and boisterous capital city of Santo Domingo, Boca Chica is the area's unofficial urban beach, and a favorite of locals and tourists alike.

What was once a quiet, unassuming escape for wealthy Dominicans and visitors has become a fun, vibrant beach town, packed with tall palm trees, excellent restaurants, vendors, shacks selling fresh seafood, and visitors who like their music at high volume.

Though European retirees love to gather here to lie out under the hot sun, the beach is also frequented by Dominican families, resulting in diverse mix of people and lifestyles that keeps the beach ever-fascinating.

Major Draws

Boca Chica's calm, shallow waters form a lagoon that's perfect for swimming and wading, and two offshore islands, La Matica and Los Pinos, stand off in the distance. Head in their direction and you'll discover that the water stays clear and shallow the entire way.

With no waves to knock them over, kids love playing in the water, and parents can rent beach chairs and umbrellas and sip a drink just a few feet away onshore.

Though vendors can sometimes get annoying with their aggressive approach, if you do end up needing or wanting something, having them at your beck and call can be a convenience.

Once the sun sets, most people pack up and head to their hotels to freshen up for a night of fun. Duarte Avenue runs just behind the beach, and is home to dozens of fantastic restaurants, bars and clubs.

In the evening, businesses on the strip set up chairs and tables in the middle of the street, blocking off traffic and transforming the area into a charming walkable village. Italian cuisine and seafood are favorites here, and people are known to venture from the city simply to get a plate of fried fish with a side of tostones.

Getting Here

If you're coming from the airport, a short 10-minute cab ride east will get you to Boca Chica. From the city, the trek can take up to 45 minutes by cab and can be somewhat pricey.

If you're pinching pennies, consider taking a public bus, or "guagua" out to the beach. Though the price is great on one of these vehicles (around $1), they can be cramped, hot and usually lack seatbelts and other basic amenities. Think of it as an adventure.

Boca Chica at a glance

City: Santo Domingo

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Length of Beach: 1 mile

Access: By car, by taxi, public transit

Best time to visit: May to June - fewer crowds, better rates

High Season: December to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • Beachfront fine dining and seafood shacks; many more bars and restaurants on Duarte Ave.
  • Chair and umbrella rental ($5-10 or negotiable)
  • No lifeguards
  • No public restrooms

Beach Type:

  • White sand
  • Saltwater
  • Popular

2. Playa Cosón

Off-The-Beaten-Path

Most visitors to the quaint international seaside village of Las Terrenas stick to the beaches in town, which, incidentally, are splendid. But it would be a shame to come to DR's alluring Samaná Peninsula and miss the most unspoiled beach of them all: Playa Cosón.

This part of the coast isn't as easy to access and isn't near the central part of town, making for an exclusive, tranquil stretch.

Serenity in the Samaná Peninsula

Featuring a wide expanse of golden sand, lush palm tree forests and sweeping ocean vistas, Playa Cosón lies between a river to the west and a cluster of hotels and villas to the east near Punta Bonita.

Since it's secluded, visitors won't have access to as many amenities as they would at tourist-packed beaches. But a few beachfront eateries have your basic needs taken care of. Chief among them is Restaurante Luis, a rustic outdoor café overlooking the coast that offers seafood and Dominican fare, plus use of loungers. A five-minute walk down the coast will get you to The Beach, an upscale restaurant tucked amid coconut palms.

Getting There

The winding, unkempt road to Playa Cosón is best navigated by local experts. Daring travelers can enlist the help of a motoconcho, or motorcycle taxi, the cheapest mode of transport (but the least safe, as drivers don't wear or offer helmets).

Otherwise, hire a taxi from the town center to take you, and prepare for a bumpy ride. Be sure to negotiate a rate ahead of time and agree on a time to meet for the ride back to town.

Playa Cosón at a glance

City: Las Terrenas

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Length of Beach: 1 mile

Access: By car or mototaxi

Best time to visit: Fall - best rates, no crowds

High Season: Dec. to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • Several beachfront restaurants
  • Many additional dining options in Las Terrenas

Beach Type:

  • Golden sand
  • Saltwater
  • Secluded

3. Playa Juan Dolio

Coastal Escape Near the Capital

White sand, saltwater lagoons and plenty of beachfront dining options await at Playa Juan Dolio, one of just a handful of beaches within an hour's drive of the capital city of Santo Domingo.

Though Playa Boca Chica is actually closer to the city and the airport, many travelers favor this stretch, not just for the better scenery, but for the more subdued vibe and higher water quality. And the beach's proximity to the city makes it a great option for independent travelers who want to experience both urban and beach areas.

Prime Spot in the Sun

Aside from overly busy Sundays, when city-dwellers descend on local beaches, Playa Juan Dolio offers a mix of serenity and activity, depending on the spot you choose to set up for the day. Bachata and merengue play at high volume near the cluster of beachfront restaurants, which have umbrellas and chairs set up on the sand.

Wander toward the rocky outcropping near the beach's western curve for a bit more quiet, or head toward the middle of the beach to see fewer chairs and tables and more windswept palm trees. No matter where you end up, expect to come across a few beach vendor selling everything from fresh-sliced coconuts to the fried dough treat known as yaniqueque.

There are two nearby golf courses (Guavaberry Golf and Country Club and Metro Country Club), and snorkeling and diving operators can take you to the most active coral reefs.

Eat, Drink and Stay

To recharge after a day in the sun, head to one of the restaurants along Calle Principal, the avenue behind the beach. You'll find a range of choices, with a focus on Dominican seafood dishes and Italian cuisine.

Accommodations tend to be budget-friendly and somewhat rustic, with a few guesthouses and no-frills rooms available near the beachfront. The all-inclusive Emotions by Hodelpa is a recent addition to the lodging lineup; four-star options include Xeliter Marbella and Coral Costa Caribe Hotel.

Playa Juan Dolio at a glance

City: Juan Dolio

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Length of Beach: .75 miles

Access: By car and bus

Best time to visit: Fall - best hotel rates

High Season: Dec. to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • Several beachfront restaurants; even more options along Calle Principal
  • No lifeguards
  • No public restrooms

Beach Type:

  • White sand
  • Saltwater
  • Popular

4. Playa Las Ballenas

Pristine Playground

To find some of the Dominican Republic's loveliest, least-crowded beaches, you'll have to head to the Samaná peninsula, to the charming fishing village turned international seaside community known as Las Terrenas.

Here, you can take in the enchanting blue waters and golden sands of Playa Las Ballenas, a stretch that has as of yet avoided the influx of major hotel brands and giant all-inclusive resorts.

Beach-lovers from all over the world have abandoned their homelands and fully embraced this Dominican town, and the mix of cultures means that in addition to Spanish, you'll hear French, Haitian Creole, German and Italian on the sidewalks and at the scores of hip bars and cafés. Playa Las Ballenas, located away from the bustle of the town center, is where expats and vacationers come to lounge and savor the tranquility.

Focus on Food

Speaking of food, if you like variety, you'll definitely have it here, thanks to the widespread international influence in town. And with tons of independently owned eateries offering great beach views and al fresco dining in lush surroundings, you might never run out of options.

Great cocktails can be found at thatched-roof El Mosquito Bar, and solid wine options are presented at several Italian restaurants in Pueblo de Los Pescadores, a row of restaurants sharing an oceanfront patio. Otherwise, head to a colmado, or corner store, for a Presidente, the country's beloved pilsner.

Nearby Attractions

Though it may be tempting to spend all your time submerged in the gorgeous waters of the Atlantic, there are some natural wonders nearby that simply cannot be missed.

Travelers' favorites are the Salto del Limón waterfall and the lush Los Haitises National Park, both nearby and well worth the visit. Book an excursion to the ever-popular Cayo Levantado, a hilly island full of beaches waiting to be discovered.

Playa Las Ballenas at a glance

City: Las Terrenas

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Access: By car, by taxi

Best time to visit: May to June - fewer crowds, better rates

High Season: December to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • Many restaurants, bars and shops nearby
  • No lifeguards
  • No public restrooms

Beach Type:

  • Golden sand
  • Saltwater
  • Popular

Beach Type:

  • Las Terrenas 10k

5. Playa Rincón

Secluded Sweet Spot

A Caribbean beach spot that's as secluded as it is stunning, Playa Rincón is one of the Dominican Republic's best-kept secrets.

Situated on the Samaná Peninsula on the northeastern side of the country, this coastal area has remained unspoiled and scenic while many of the DR's other major beach regions have been swallowed up by development.

For that feeling of being deserted on a peaceful island, you couldn't choose a better place. Playa Rincón's thick patch of coconut palms, its clean, white sand and its deep blue water are enchanting, whether you've been here once or a thousand times.

Getting Here

There's a reason Playa Rincón is still undiscovered by the masses: It's not exactly a breeze to get here. To reach the beach, you only have a few options.

Book an excursion with a vehicle that can handle the extremely bumpy road, rent a Jeep or ATV, or take a boat over from the fishing village of Las Galeras. Most people choose to do the latter.

What to Do

At a secluded beach, you can't expect a large number of amenities outside of what nature has provided. There are no major hotel chains here, no souvenir shops and limited options for food. However, you can rent a beach chair here, and even order some freshly cooked seafood lovingly prepared by locals.

A sheltered area of the water is a great place to snorkel, and if you get hot, you can wade into the chilly waters supplied by the freshwater stream that flows through here.

If you're at Playa Rincón for just one day, focus on spending some quality time soaking in the unforgettable scenery and snapping some photos. Who knows when you'll come across something like this again.

Playa Rincón at a glance

City: Samaná

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Length of Beach: 1.2 miles

Access: By car, ATV, bus or boat

Best time to visit: May to June - best rates, great weather

High Season: December to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • A few casual restaurants
  • Beach chair rentals
  • No lifeguards
  • No public restrooms

Beach Type:

  • White sand
  • Saltwater (some freshwater)
  • Secluded

6. Playa San Rafael

Unique Natural Spa

The Dominican Republic's southwest coast is home to verdant mountain slopes, ultra-saturated blue water and unspoiled pebbled beaches.

One of the most famous is Playa San Rafael, revered not just for its scenery, but for its refreshing natural spa, a result of the San Rafael River's cascading path to the ocean. Rocky dams create shallow freshwater pools where locals convene to take a break from the heat, sip Presidente beer and chow down on fresh-caught seafood.

This attraction is one of the country's best under-the-radar delights, and worth a trip to the southwest coast just to experience it.

Eat, Drink and Enjoy

As alluring as the ocean is, swimming here is not advisable, as crashing waves and powerful rip tides make it unsafe. Cool off in the spa instead, which, luckily, comes free of charge. Feel the cool water rush over you as you sit under small waterfalls, or don a snorkeling mask to see fish swirling at your feet.

Chairs and umbrellas are available near the river and beachfront for those who order meals at the food shacks. These informal eateries serve seafood favorites like grilled lobster, stewed shrimp and deep fried red snapper, along with sides of piping hot tostones (fried green plantains) and all the cold beer you can drink.

Tips

Getting to Playa San Rafael from Barahona will require hiring a taxi service from the town center or flagging down a guagua (public bus), the more budget-friendly option.

Though there are some decent hotel options in Barahona, we recommend choosing one of the area's sleepy small towns as your base (Paraiso, La Cienaga or Los Patos), home to rustic boutique-style hotels such as the Hotelito Oasi Italiana with an outdoor pool and its own resident parrot.

Playa San Rafael at a glance

City: Barahona

Country or State: Dominican Republic

Length of Beach: 2000 feet

Access: By taxi, public bus or motorcycle taxi

Best time to visit: Winter - best weather

High Season: Dec. to April

Low Season: May to November

Facilities:

  • Food shacks near the beach and river
  • Restaurants and hotels in small towns near beach
  • No lifeguards
  • No public restrooms

Beach Type:

  • Pebbled
  • Saltwater
  • Popular

Weather in Santo Domingo °F°CAverage monthly temperatures

Jan
 13 days
Feb
 23 days
Mar
 23 days
Apr
 18 days
May
 16 days
Jun
 16 days
Jul
 20 days
Aug
 22 days
Sep
 20 days
Oct
 16 days
Nov
 27 days
Dec
 26 days
Sunny or mostly sunny days
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