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Dominican Republic Sets New All-Time Tourism Record As Destination Skyrockets In Popularity

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As evidenced by new record-shattering travel statistics, Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic are some of the hottest Caribbean destinations for North Americans this year.

Despite being a historically slower period for tourism, a whopping 621,000 travelers flocked to the Dominican Republic in May, a new all-time record for that month.

Top view of Bavaro beach and Punta Cana in Dominican Republic

With its winning combination of white-sand beaches, tropical weather, and world-class all-inclusive, this Caribbean nation ticks all the right boxes for sun-seeking travelers.

Here’s the latest on the Dominican Republic’s skyrocketing popularity and what current estimates say about this year’s record-shattering summer period:

Aerial view of the Caribbean city of Punta Cana with Hotels and resorts

Cruising Boosts Arrival Figures As Dominican Republic Invests In New Ports

In his monthly address on the state of tourism in the Dominican Republic, the country’s minister for tourism, David Collado, had a lot of good things to share with reporters.

According to the high-ranking executive, over 620,000 travelers set foot on the sun-soaked island in May, propelling the country closer to becoming one of the most popular Caribbean destinations.

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Cruise Ship in Puerto Plata Port, Dominican Republic

That figure is an 18% increase on 2019’s numbers, when the country registered its last record, a sign that the Dominican Republic has solidified its position as a leading Caribbean hotspot.

What’s even more surprising is the unprecedented number of cruise ship passengers that visited the country in May. The Dominican Republic recorded over 136,000 arrivals via cruise ships in May, nearly tripling comparable figures from previous years.

“This means that in only five months, the Dominican Republic has welcomed 4.5 million visitors, something truly extraordinary and unprecedented in the history of our country’s tourism”, Mr. Collado said during his press conference.

Cruise Ship arriving

And with new costly investments and massive upgrades to existing terminals, that number is expected to climb steeply, positioning the Caribbean island as a veritable cruising hub. In December, the country will inaugurate the cutting-edge Port Cabo Rojo in Pedernales, a relatively unexplored but stunningly beautiful coastal hotspot.

Meanwhile, Puerto Plata remains the most popular cruise destination in the Dominican Republic, with a host of nature destinations and powdery white-sand beaches. Travelers can enjoy several popular activities on their next Puerto Plata cruise stop, including a visit to the awe-inspiring peaks of the city’s lush mountains.

@theblueglobetrotter Spend MSC Seashore cruise port day in Puerto Plata with me #msccruises #mscseashore #cruiseship #cruisetiktok #puertoplata #dominicanrepublic #cruiselife ♬ Fly Away – Tones And I

Even though cruising is one of the most popular ways to experience the Dominican Republic, all-inclusive resorts are still king when it comes to tourism. And in that regard, there’s no shortage of world-class destinations that offer warm hospitality, lavish amenities, and excellent safety.

Punta Cana, the country’s iconic eastern resort hotspot, remains the most sought-after destination, attracting nearly 60% of all international travelers in May. Miles-long white-sand beaches adorned with palm trees and high-end all-inclusive resorts make Punta Cana one of the world’s top luxury destinations.

Overview of the coastline in Puerto Plata with resorts

Other destinations like La Romana, Puerto Plata, and Samaná also figure among the most visited hotspots, each offering a unique array of luxury resorts and lush nature.

And while the Dominican Republic is known around the world for its famous beaches, North Americans remain the most significant market for inbound tourism, with Americans representing over half of all arrivals.

Canadians come in second place, with some 12% of all travelers hailing from this northern nation, a figure that is expected to skyrocket with the signing of the Open Skies Treaty.

Beautiful beach resort in La Romana, Dominican Republic with blue waters, palm trees and umbrellas

Although traditional resort hotspots will continue to dominate the hospitality scene for years to come, new destinations like Miches and Pedernales are slowly making a name for themselves, with new resorts that increasingly focus on eco-tourism and pristine nature.

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