Things to do in Santo Domingo and Bávaro Beach in 7 days
For an unforgettable vacation, make the most of your trip to the Dominican Republic by experiencing everything this fabulous destination has to offer. Kick things off with the infinite charm of Santo Domingo, the capital, and its incredible colonial treasures. Then round out your trip with several days of sun, turquoise water and white sand at Bávaro Beach, along the northern stretch of Punta Cana.
In Santo Domingo, be sure to visit the first cathedral and palace in America, among the many other historic jewels. Also check out the museums, delicious food and varied shopping alternatives. Once night falls, give in to the music, vibrant atmosphere and laughter that make this city so special.
Continue discovering the Dominican Republic’s wonders by visiting Punta Cana and Bávaro Beach, an idyllic sun & beach destination where relaxation and fun are guaranteed. After spending a day at the spa and pool, sign up the next morning for an unforgettable adventure. And once the sun goes down, the best parties await. There are countless options!
Itinerary day 1
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Begin exploring the Dominican capital by visiting one of its most important monuments: Columbus Lighthouse. Built to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s arrival on the island, it is said that the great admiral’s remains are kept here.
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Make your way to the Colonial City to visit the Basilica Cathedral of Santa María la Menor (Catedral Primada de América). Built between 1510 and 1540, this beautiful Gothic temple was the first cathedral in the New World and one of the city’s symbols. The cathedral and the adjacent Columbus Park are the historic heart of Santo Domingo.
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Near the cathedral, on the bank of the Ozama River, this museum was an important government building during colonial times. Today, it is the perfect place to learn about the Dominican Republic’s rich history, from the arrival of Columbus to the dark times of the dictator Rafael Leónidas Trujillo.
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
After a morning of non-stop activity, it’s time to fill up and enjoy the flavors of Dominican cuisine. This restaurant, located on the famous street Calle El Conde, serves all types of traditional dishes, from mofonguitos to sancocho, paired with irresistible signature cocktails.
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Continue exploring Santo Domingo’s Colonial City by visiting Columbus Alcazar, the first European palace in America. Built between 1511 and 1514, it was the home of Diego Columbus—the famous explorer’s son and governor of the island—and today it is one of the most important museums in the city.
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Relax and enjoy the afternoon at any of the bars located on Plaza de España, directly in front of Columbus Alcazar. Once there, be sure to try one of the cocktails made with authentic Dominican rum. The house specialty!
8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
There is no better way to wrap up the day than with a delicious assortment of the best international food at El Jardín, our gourmet restaurant in El Embajador, a Royal Hideaway Hotel.
Itinerary day 2
10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Head over to Plaza de la Cultura and learn about the country’s rich history, art and culture at the various museums that line the square: the National Library, the Museum of the Dominican Man, the National Theater, the Museum of Modern Art, and the National Museum of History and Geography.
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
With the choice of the à la carte menu or the delicious buffet, B.Delicious restaurant at the Barceló Santo Domingo hotel is an excellent alternative for lunch. It also happens to be near Plaza de la Cultura.
4:00 PM - 7:30 PM
There are all types of shopping alternatives in Santo Domingo, including stores that sell lovely Dominican handicrafts, boutiques featuring local designers, or Blue Mall and Ágora Mall, home to the best brands.
8:00 PM - 9:30 PM
Serving the ultimate Japanese cuisine, Kyoto restaurant at the Barceló Santo Domingo hotel is a great example of the many flavors that can be found in this eclectic city.
9:30 PM - midnight
Try your luck at the casino after dinner. Located on the ground level of Barceló Santo Domingo, Casino Lina has a vast array of state-of-the-art slot machines. The table area features a wide variety of games, and there is also a fun poker room.
Midnight - ??
Stop by the Piano Bar at Barceló Santo Domingo for one last drink accompanied by the magnificent atmosphere and the best live music.
Itinerary day 3
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
As you begin the journey towards Bávaro Beach, take a detour to visit the Cave of Wonders (Cueva de las Maravillas), a natural treasure with all types of geological formations as well as close to 500 pictographs and petroglyphs carved into the rock by ancient Tainos.
12:30 PM - 3:00 PM
The next stop along the way is Altos de Chavón, an incredible replica of a 16th-century Mediterranean-style village. It features art galleries, shops, St. Stanislaus Church and a large Greek-style amphitheater. You can also have lunch at any of its restaurants.
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Continuing towards Bávaro Beach, the next stop is the historic city of Higüey. The Basilica-Cathedral of Our Lady of Altagracia, patroness of the nation, and the 16th-century Church of San Dionisio are just two of the many landmarks worth seeing.
7:00 PM - 11:00 PM
Check in to one of the two hotels that comprise Barceló Bávaro Grand Resort (Barceló Bávaro Palace or Barceló Bávaro Beach–Adults Only), or to Occidental Punta Cana or Occidental Caribe, and begin experiencing a stay that is out of this world.
Itinerary day 4
10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Bask peacefully on the beach with your favorite book or try an array of sports and activities on land or in the water, from snorkeling and kayaking to padel or beach volleyball. Or if you prefer, play 18 holes at The Lakes, the impressive golf course in Barceló Bávaro Grand Resort.
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
From the best local dishes to the most delicious flavors in the world, these incredible hotels—viewed as the top all-inclusive establishments in the Dominican Republic—have a vast assortment of à la carte restaurants, buffets, snack bars and more!
5:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Pamper your body and mind at U-Spa, the state-of-the-art health, wellness and beauty center in Barceló Bávaro Palace, or at the fantastic spas in Occidental Punta Cana and Occidental Caribe. The best treatments, cutting-edge equipment and personalized service.
8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
After a delightful dinner, enjoy a fun evening watching the shows at the theater in Occidental Caribe or at Bávaro Grand Theater in Barceló Bávaro Grand Resort, a magnificent stage inspired by the amazing counterparts in Las Vegas. A different performance every night!
Itinerary day 5
During the entire day
Go on one of the most magical day tours in the Dominican Republic to visit Saona Island. Surround yourself by the lush nature of this virtually untouched island and then party to the beat of merengue and bachata on a catamaran on the way back. Oh, and there happens to be an open bar!
Itinerary day 6
During the entire day
Experience a day of action and adventure at La Hacienda Park. Zip lines, buggy tours, horseback riding and more. Up to seven activities are included, and all take place in the Dominican Republic’s fascinating nature. Transfers to and from the hotel are also included in ticket prices.
A trip to Bávaro Beach would not be complete without a taste of its fun nightlife. Take part in the epic party scene at Coco Bongo Show & Disco. Buy your tickets in advance and transfers to and from the hotel will be included in the price.
Itinerary day 7
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Recover from a night of partying with a hearty breakfast at any of the hotel buffets. And if you’re in the mood, kick back and lounge around one of the pools surrounded by tropical plants and flowers at these spectacular resorts.
12:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Time to go sailing! Remember, you’re in the Caribbean! There are several options to choose from, including fun catamarans from which to explore the amazing reefs nearby or snorkel with rays and sharks, always with a lively Dominican atmosphere (and open bar).
Wrap up an unforgettable vacation with a delicious Italian dinner at La Dolce Vita or Via Veneto, Spanish food at La Fuente, French cuisine at París or La Comedie, Japanese dishes at Tokyo, or Mexican fare at México Lindo, and then try your luck at the casino. Maybe you’ll decide to stay another week!