The Dominican Republic has been one of last year’s frontrunners in terms of tourism growth, managing to once again surpass its all-time visitor record just this past December.
2024 is showing no signs of slowing down, either.
The sun-soaked nation nestled in the heart of the Caribbean is drawing in travelers at unprecedented rates, and if last year marked an impressive total of 10,306,517 visitors, these upcoming 12 months are set to push that number even further.
American travelers, who make up more than 43% of the people lucky enough to experience the Dominican Republic’s allure firsthand, are particularly looking forward to their winter getaways in four dreamy destinations.
So, if you’re thinking about jetting off to somewhere warm right now, these are the Dominican cities that should be on your radar.
4. La Romana
11% of the travelers who entered the Dominican Republic last year were headed to la Romana, a city that has stayed hidden in the country’s southeastern coast for far too long.
La Romana now stands as one of the region’s most coveted attractions, known for its otherworldly beaches and all-inclusive resorts, which promise to help you escape the stresses of day-to-day life.
The local resort area, otherwise known as Casa de Campo, is consistently ranked among the top resorts in the Caribbean, and remember, the competition is pretty stiff.
However, don’t let the city’s luxurious exterior give you the wrong impression.
La Romana is a culturally rich city that welcomes every traveler with open arms – nature enthusiasts will be drawn to the nearby Saona island, city trippers can explore the many nearby galleries and artisan shops, whereas those with a soft spot for jaw-dropping views will fall in love with the picturesque village of Altos de Chavón.
3. Puerto Plata
Having beaten its southeastern counterpart to a spot on the podium by a very small margin, Puerto Plata has enchanted well over a million visitors this past year with its untouched shores and historical riches.
The city locals lovingly refer to as the “Silver Port” was one of the very first European settlements in the Americas, and, as such, holds a very special place in the Dominican Republic’s long history.
Today, you, too, can explore part of the fascinating story by strolling through the colorful streets, visiting Fort San Felipe, and setting some time apart to view the region’s rich amber deposits found in the iconic Amber Museum.
Culture seekers and history buffs won’t be the only ones guaranteed to have a blast in Puerto Plata, though.
The city is also famous for its idyllic beaches, including Playa Dorada and Playa Grande, its vibrant Malecón, and its diverse landscape, probably best represented by the Nearby Mount Isabel.
2. Santo Domingo
As the capital and the second-most visited destination in the Dominican Republic, Santo Domingo has always held a special type of allure among travelers.
Now boasting the look and feel of a dynamic metropolis, the city is actually the oldest European settlement in the Americas (leaving even Puerto Plata behind), with a history that dates back to the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492.
Santo Domingo’s historic charm is beautifully contrasted by modern, trendy neighborhoods like Piantini or Naco, where upscale shopping, dining, and entertainment options are virtually endless.
1. Punta Cana
While the race for the second and third spots on today’s list was a bit close, the title of the most visited destination in the Dominican Republic could only go to one place and one place alone – Punta Cana.
Even those who’ve never thought about exploring the Caribbean already know of the beachy Dominican town, whose pearly white beaches and awe-inspiring views have become so iconic that the name is often used to paint a picture of the ultimate tropical paradise.
While there’s a lot to explore in Punta Cana beyond the beaches, getting here and not enjoying a sunbathing session would be truly unforgivable, at least among traveler circles.
Bavaro Beach, Playa Juanillo, Macao, and who knows how many other (famous or undiscovered) beaches welcome you with open arms and the kind of views that’ll leave you speechless.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com
Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.