Warm weather! Sun! Beach! Away from the Minnesota cold. Here we come!!!
One big question came up on whether we should choose to go with an all-inclusive resort or getting a place through VRBO. VRBO is always our go-to for when we travel… But this was our first trip out of the U.S. with our boys.
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We ultimately chose to stay in an all-inclusive resort. A huge reason for that was all the meals and activities were included. And not having to worry about extra costs other than optional excursions. Our boys are also extremely picky with their food so the different restaurants on site as well as a buffet, there was definitely options for them.
We flew into Punta Cana on a non-stop flight with Sun Country. This put us at ease as we didn’t have to worry about changing planes with two little boys. Once we arrived and went through customs, we went out to the private transportation we had reserved prior to the trip.
We were so glad to have arranged for private transportation to take us to the resort. The driver was very welcoming and personable. He shared lots of information about the area and answered our many questions.
We arrived at our all-inclusive resort Royalton Punta Cana Resort and Casino. First impression: WOW!! Beautiful and the weather was perfect. Checking in was a breeze. We were then escorted to our room on the second floor. Our room was facing the main pool! Score! Once we got settled in, it was off to the pool.
Why did we choose the Royalton Punta Cana Resort and Casino? It had great reviews, right on the beach, the internet was included and the huge plus was guests had access to the waterpark at their sister resort, Grand Memories Punta Cana located next door. Not only do we have access to their waterpark
There were so many activities they had planned and the music was always playing. It definitely put us in our happy place. Pool parties, games, exercise classes, and foam pool party for the kids. There was no shortage of fun here. Each evening, there was something planned for the family. There was even an evening where they had an all in white party. Shall we go dancing?
The Royalton Punta Cana Resort and Casino has a theater that had live shows. We sat in one show for a brief time. Our younger son did not want to stay for the show. I think he was ready for bed after enjoying the fun in the sun.
A big plus for families is the Clubhouse Kids Club for ages 4-12 years old and Hangout Teens Club for ages 13-17 years old.
There is even a casino here if you want to take a chance at your luck.
If you forgot any essentials such as sunscreen, do not fret. There is a shop in the resort for all your needs. Just keep in mind it would be more expensive than what you would’ve paid if you bought it from home.
Getting to the waterpark, we had two options. First one is to walk there, which may be about a 10 – 15 min walk or take a shuttle that runs around the clock. We opted for the shuttle. The waterpark at Grand Memories Punta Cana was so much fun! There is an area for younger kids. For the older ones, there are two water slides. There was also the wave pool which was very popular for both of our boys.
Let’s talk about the food options here! There are four restaurants plus a buffet at Royalton Punta Cana Resort and Casino. We frequented the Grand Marche – International Buffet a lot during our stay. It was very convenient and it does not require reservations. We were also able to enjoy dinner at Jade, Zen and Grazie Italian Trattoria. These required reservations which were easy to get. We did have trouble with getting reservations at Hunter Steakhouse so was not able to try that. Hunter Steakhouse was a very popular spot.
Drinks anyone? While on vacation, adults can enjoy the various themed bars around the resort. You can have the option at the beach, pool, bar, lobby or lounge.
While there are many activities in the resort, we wanted to see what was available outside of the resort. We chose 2 excursions: dune buggy ride and Saona Island Tour.
Flinstone Buggy Adventure
We decided on going on a Flinstone Buggy Adventure. Our guide picked us up in front of the resort and took us out into the countryside where we would get a quick orientation at their ranch.
We then selected our helmets. Landon was given a pink helmet as that was the only size that fit him. No biggie as he would stay safe. We had brought bandanas with us in preparation for the ride.
We went on some of the bumpiest roads we have ever been on. The only way to go on these roads were in the buggy. With the open air, the bandanas were definitely keeping dirt, mud, and wind out of our faces. It was very nice to have a private tour. Just the four of us and our guide.
We stopped and visited a home in the countryside. We learned about their way of life and where they did their cooking. The family shared with us a cup of Dominican coffee. Delicious coffee.
This home was also the only market for the homes in the surrounding area. Our next stop in our buggy ride was visiting a cave. The Flinstone cave. Such a fun visit there. Just be aware of bats in the deepest parts of the cave.
Saona Island Tour
Another fun excursion we did was going to Saona Island. We started with a shuttle picking us up from our resort as well as other guests in neighboring resorts. We then met at a central spot where the tour buses await for us to take us on a one and a half hour long drive to get to Bayahibe town beach.
Once at Bayahibe, we gathered onto the speedboat and head out on the Carribean Sea to a natural swimming pond where we would enjoy some swimming in the clearest blue waters I have ever seen.
Back on the speedboat, we head out to Saona Island where we spent the day exploring the island, received a
On our way back to Bayahibe, we hopped on the catamaran and enjoyed a more relaxing ride. We sat at the far end away from the music and dancing so the boys were able to rest. They fell asleep for the majority of the ride. Once back at Bayahibe, we got on the tour bus and was taken back to the resort.
The rest of the days were spent in the resort and enjoyed all the amenities there. We enjoyed our trip out to Punta Cana! It is definitely one of our best family beach vacation ever.
What has been your favorite beach vacation?
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