Top Tours & Activities in Puerto Plata
Once a major colonial city, San Felipe de Puerto Plata is making a quiet comeback, thanks largely to some of the Caribbean's best value beach resorts! Here's what to see amid the sun, sea, and sand!
Where better to begin your discovery of Puerto Plata than at the ruins of Christopher Columbus' old house in La Isabella – the Dominican Republic's first settlement!
This pristine sandbank makes for a luxurious excursion from the Dominican shoreline. The amenities are top-notch, but you really ought to go for the coral snorkelling!
Climb, slide, swim, and jump across the 27 cascades and rock pools that make up Damajagua! Thrillseekers need look no further than this gorgeous landscape-cum-adventure park.
Family vacation? This interactive aquarium and marina lets visitors swim with dolphins, pet stingrays, and play with sealions. There are even tigers! (Real ones. Not sea-tigers.)
Dominican amber is among the best in the world and the Museo del Ambar exhibits stunning fossils of insects, leaves, lizards, and even birds preserved within its effervescent grip!
Built in 1564 to defend against pirates, San Felipe is one of the oldest European forts in the Americas. The oldest is Santo Domingo's Fortaleza Ozama, just a short trip away!
Day-trips to and from the Dominican capital are quick and easy! Sightseeing highlights include the National Pantheon, Calle las Damas, and The Three Eyes national park.
Puerto Plata is on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. It isn't as well protected from the Atlantic by corals and other islands as Punta Cana – which might just have the best beaches in the country – but the upside is that the resorts are significantly cheaper. It's a great place to do the Caribbean experience on a budget!
Puerto Plata experiences tropical weather year-round, with even winter seeing temperatures push 30°C. The peak tourism season is between December to April, but visiting from May to mid-June will see cheaper hotel rates. Why? It's the run-up to hurricane season so don't book any later than that!
The Dominican Republic is a poor country and often reported to have a fairly high (though decreasing) crime-rate, but the worst of it is concentrated in remote areas. Tourist areas and resorts are kept exceptionally safe. However, as with any vacation destination, it's always worth exercizing some caution.
- CurrencyDOP (RD$)
- Time ZoneUTC (-04:00)
- Country Code+1
- Best time to visitVisit between December and mid-June to enjoy beach weather without the threat of hurricanes!
Things to Do in Puerto Plata
Top Attractions in Puerto Plata
Other Sightseeing Options in Puerto Plata
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What People Are Saying About Puerto Plata
Our driver on the way from the airport was great! He got us there in half the time that was expected and was nice enough to stop at a secure spot for us to get a bite to eat and drinks. The driver from the hotel took a different route that took way more time than it should had. Not to mention we we gripping our seata thinking we would get into an accident any minute wit his crazy driving.
Round trip from Santiago to Puerto Plata was very good, driver and vehicle were clean. He drove excellent, not like most of the other drivers we used and he was on time. When we scheduled the trip we were told it would be a 3 hour one way trip. the driver did not speed and it only took 1 hour and 15 minutes each way. My only complaint is I had a hard time verifying the day before each trip to make sure of the time and place of pick up were. I would prefer the company to verify with me instead of visa versa .
Started off with some ZipLining. The guides were all fun to be around, joking around and having a good time, while still being very professional when it comes to safety while riding zip lines. The 53ft drop was intimidating at first, but great once you got off the platform! I even wanted to walk up and do it again. The monkeys were simply amazing. Nothing like having 3 or 4 different squirrel monkeys crawl around on your arms and head while trying to eat food of a plate you're holding. Quite a memorable experience overall!
I had read a lot about the falls and our expectations were pretty high. Driving out through the litter- and construction-strewn zones around Puerto Plata, we were a little skeptical. Arriving at the falls, we were told that because of the ongoing drought, the "27" Falls were actually only "12". I was disappointed and even more skeptical. However, once on the hike up, the natural beauty if the area started to shine. Once on the downhill through the falls and water-carved canyons, we were enthralled. Jumping almost 30' into a clear pool was thrilling, the slides were a blast, the water was refreshing, and the guides were helpful and entertaining. I think we were all pretty tired, but wishing for even more, at the end. Bring your cash, though--the implication from the guides was "no tip, no lunch". I didn't mind--they earned it--but I was glad I tucked some pesos in my bag that morning. Lunch was pretty good, and the rum made it even better. :-)
I can't recommend this experience enough. It's fun, it's informative, it opens your eyes. Take a day and go do it.