The Dominican Republic occupies the eastern two thirds
of the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean Sea. (Haiti occupies the
western third of the island.) Located at its easternmost tip is the of
15,000-acre Punta Cana Resort which has a coastline of white sandy
beaches and rocky cliffs. Within its confines are world-class golf
courses and private oceanfront communities, including the small and
exclusive enclave where La Colina is located.
Golf is very big here and there are two courses with a third on the way. The first,
La Cana, was designed by P. B. Dye with 14 ocean-view holes with 4 on
the water’s edge. Golf Magazine compared this course to Pebble Beach and
rated it the “number one course in the Caribbean.” The second, Corales,
was completed in 2009 and is designed by Tom Fazio with 6
oceanfront holes. P.B. Dye is also designing the third, La Hacienda,
which will hopefully be open soon.
Be papered at the famous Six Senses Spa and Wellness Center which has
wide variety of holistic therapies to “nurture all of your senses and
rejuvenate your mind and body.” Pick from indoor, outdoor, individual or
couples accommodations. Swim in the ocean and then lunch on the terrace
of El Grill. Other activities include tennis, deep-sea fishing, diving,
riding on the beach, kiteboarding, parasailing, windsurfing and swimming with
dolphins. In nearby Punta Cana Village are a couple of restaurants, an ATM (Dominican Pesos only) and a few shops.
Lots more stores are found in all the hotels
El Cortecito, a
charming fishing village in nearby Bávaro, which is home to a colorful
artisans market selling masses of souvenirs in open-air stalls.
There is an
Ecological Reserve about 15
minutes away (real jungle so bring mosquito repellent!) for short guided
tour through tropical vegetation with a refreshing swim in a cool spring
afterwards (optional). Day trips can be organized via car
(about 2 hours) or air to the west coast for excellent diving and
snorkeling or to see other sites and cities.
The currency is the Dominican Peso; however, credit cards and the US
dollar are taken in most tourist spots. Spanish is the official
language. Several US carriers fly nonstop to the Punta Cana
(International) Airport including: American, United, US Airways and
Continental. International carriers include: Air France, Alitalia and
KLM. There is also a private terminal and landing strip with a runway
long enough to handle a Gulfstream.