Top attractions in Puerto Plata
Best things to do 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!
1. Columbus House
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!
2. Paradise Island
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!
3. Damajagua Waterfalls
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.
4. Ocean World 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.)
5. Dominican Amber Museum
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!
6. Fort San Felipe
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!
7. Santo Domingo
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.
Planning Your Visit
Where is it?
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!
Best time to visit?
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!
How safe is it?
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.
Good to know
- DOP (RD$)
- Time Zone
- UTC (-04:00)
- Country Code
- Best time to visit
- Visit between December and mid-June to enjoy beach weather without the threat of hurricanes!
Other Sightseeing Options in Puerto Plata
Want to discover all there is to do in Puerto Plata? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Puerto Plata
Very good, from pickup to drop off. Horses looked healthy although one was a donkey, the guide was very nice and pointed out many interesting things along the route. The waterfall is spectacular even if it hadn't rained much. Plenty of time for a swim and the lunch aftrr was good as well.
I have done the dolphin swim in Mexico Puerto Vallarta and in the Caymans the dolphin swim in Punta Cana is the best of all of them by far I would definitely recommend Punta Cana dolphin swim
The tour was excellent. They made sure they accommodated us as much as they could. We felt safe throughout the whole trip. The bus driver was great.
Tour guide was amazing! he made the experience so much fun.
Great tour, the waterfalls are beautiful, staff was so helpful and informational. Lunch was great!
It was amazing! Gabriel was so patient with us as we had two non swimmers! Highly recommend!