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Punta Cana as a Cruise Port?

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For those who have already stopped in Cap Cana / Punta Cana, would you recommend a cruise line shore excursion or just taking the shuttle bus to the beach?

 

We're scheduled to stop here on our next Celebrity cruise, and their shore excursions seem a bit pricey. We have a bit of extra on board credit to use, so I'd like to book a shore excursion in either Punta Cana or Nassau. Since we've been to Nassau many times before and know we won't get off of the ship without a shore excursion, I'm leaning towards a shore excursion in Nassau and just doing the shuttle bus to the beach in Punta Cana.

 

Thoughts? Thanks!

I posted this on 11/27/17

 

We returned today from our 7 day Caribbean cruise on the Silhouette and one of tbe stops was Cap Cana. It took sometime to load the tenders because of rough waters but we made it on shore.

We decided to go to Juanillo Beach, which is about 25 min ride. The round trip on the shuttle was 20/person and it left every 15 or 20 min. A cab with scheduled pick up time was $65/car so convenient if it is more than 3 in your group. Once there we went to Little John restaurant and settled in a cabana style seats and table. Payment was consumption but you could negotiate. Beach was nice but there was a lot of seaweed and water clarity was not that great. The other option was API beach for $15 round trip per person. It looks like they put a net out in the water to prevent seaweed from getting to shore.

 

The shops at the marina were open but there really wasn't much to see.

 

The tender on the way back was much better. This is a port I would not mind missing in the future.

 

 

Excursion to same beach was 109 per person. Too pricey IMO

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I posted this on 11/27/17

 

We returned today from our 7 day Caribbean cruise on the Silhouette and one of tbe stops was Cap Cana. It took sometime to load the tenders because of rough waters but we made it on shore.

We decided to go to Juanillo Beach, which is about 25 min ride. The round trip on the shuttle was 20/person and it left every 15 or 20 min. A cab with scheduled pick up time was $65/car so convenient if it is more than 3 in your group. Once there we went to Little John restaurant and settled in a cabana style seats and table. Payment was consumption but you could negotiate. Beach was nice but there was a lot of seaweed and water clarity was not that great. The other option was API beach for $15 round trip per person. It looks like they put a net out in the water to prevent seaweed from getting to shore.

 

The shops at the marina were open but there really wasn't much to see.

 

The tender on the way back was much better. This is a port I would not mind missing in the future.

 

 

Excursion to same beach was 109 per person. Too pricey IMO

 

 

 

Thanks so much for your report back. My sister and I are on the Equinox in January and hard to find info on this port. Think we will try Juanillo beach as you did (if we are able to tender). I try to avoid tendered ports when booking cruises with my husband but sister liked this itinerary.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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I was wondering if a lot of ships were still experiencing Cap Cana as a missed port due to bad weather?  Is there is much to do close to the pier that doesn't require an excursion?

Any information is appreciated!

 

Edited by goodlife 2
spelling errors

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Just got back from a cruise on the Equinox last week, and we were in Punta Cana on Nov 28.  The weather was great - 85 and sunny.  The tender boat ride to the island was smooth.  There is really not much to do at the actual port.  Celebrity offers excursions, but they seemed overpriced, so we just took a shuttle ride from the cruise port over to Api Beach, which is on the left side of the marina from where the tender boats go in and out.  It was $15 round trip per person; about a 10 minute drive; you cannot walk there even though it looks close.  The beach was very small but clean and beautiful and was not crowded at all and had some shady places to relax.  There is no cost to go to the beach resort, but we bought two cocktails, which were very expensive ($26 for two frozen drinks).  There were almost no shops on that side, just lots of new-ish empty/boarded up buildings; it’s kinda like a weird tropical ghost town.  Our tender boat ride back to the ship was a little choppy and by the end of the day it was getting hard for the tenders to dock at the ship. 

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boardgirl148, a previous poster talked about a show at the port that was someone on stilts and circus like. Lasted about an hour. Did you notice anything like this when you got off the tender? Just wondering how often it was performed or what time is was scheduled. Any help would be appreciated. Will be on the Equinox in February.

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15 hours ago, tartan cruiser said:

boardgirl148, a previous poster talked about a show at the port that was someone on stilts and circus like. Lasted about an hour. Did you notice anything like this when you got off the tender? 

 

I did not see any show (or signs of a show), but we probably went over about 2 hours after the ship anchored.  Definitely not within the first hour.  Maybe there was one first thing in the morning but I didn’t hear anyone mention one.

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Thanks for your help. I'm guessing if they have a show it's probably shortly after the ship arrives. Will check on board with shore excursion desk.  Not much information regarding this port since so few ships stop here. I'm thinking we'll probably just take the shuttle to one of the beaches. $109 (Celebrity excursion) seems expensive for a beach day. I was originally looking forward to this port since we've never been here before. Now not so much. Again thanks for your response.

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I'm on the Celebrity Equinox also on February 2.  Ive been to Punta Cana twice staying at resorts, but never off a cruise.  Based on the reviews of this port, I thought the best idea would be to book a shore excursion through Celebrity in case the wait for tenders was crazy.  I took advantage of the 30 % off sale and booked the Segway tour.  It came out to $ 79 pp.  I didn't want just a beach day ..I am hoping to maybe get some beach time in after the Segways... I've done Segways many times and they are always fun.  

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Does anyone know if you can still book a scape park excursion once you get to the port? I don't want to book through celebrity as it is $250/pp and I thought I read on here someone booked just the ziplines for 90 each once they arrived on port. I'm going to risk it as we leave this Saturday. Hopefully we can book something once we arrive.

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11 minutes ago, JB333 said:

Does anyone know if you can still book a scape park excursion once you get to the port? I don't want to book through celebrity as it is $250/pp and I thought I read on here someone booked just the ziplines for 90 each once they arrived on port. I'm going to risk it as we leave this Saturday. Hopefully we can book something once we arrive.

I found an excursion through Costco Travel.  I didn't book my cruise through them but have used their shore excursions in the past.  I had originally booked the Segway Tour though Celebrity for my Feb 2 Equinox cruise when they offered 30 % off.  It was costing $ 79.  I got an email from Celebrity last week that it was cancelled even though it still shows on their website.  I googled around and found a Ziplining tour for $ 79 through Shore Excursions group and Costco.  It got pretty good reviews when I looked at the actual Zipline company on Tripadvisor.  I hope this helps.. I was pretty frustrated with the choices of excursions in Punta Cana...

 

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31 minutes ago, jled said:

I found an excursion through Costco Travel.  I didn't book my cruise through them but have used their shore excursions in the past.  I had originally booked the Segway Tour though Celebrity for my Feb 2 Equinox cruise when they offered 30 % off.  It was costing $ 79.  I got an email from Celebrity last week that it was cancelled even though it still shows on their website.  I googled around and found a Ziplining tour for $ 79 through Shore Excursions group and Costco.  It got pretty good reviews when I looked at the actual Zipline company on Tripadvisor.  I hope this helps.. I was pretty frustrated with the choices of excursions in Punta Cana...

 

 

Thanks Jled, I actually looked on shore excursions group as well, but I'm pretty sure that zipline company was through Runners. I contacted them to see how far it is from the port and they said it was 1.5 hours each way. They do provide transportation but 3 hours is a bit too much for me. It is definitely a much better price though! If you want I will come back here and let you know if they still do just the ziplining at scape park for $89 once you arrive from tender. I will be back on the 27th.

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3 hours ago, JB333 said:

 

Thanks Jled, I actually looked on shore excursions group as well, but I'm pretty sure that zipline company was through Runners. I contacted them to see how far it is from the port and they said it was 1.5 hours each way. They do provide transportation but 3 hours is a bit too much for me. It is definitely a much better price though! If you want I will come back here and let you know if they still do just the ziplining at scape park for $89 once you arrive from tender. I will be back on the 27th.

I was told that the company is Horseplay Punta Cana.  I just emailed them with that question.  I agree about the drive.  I would much rather do something closer...

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I just looked at Shore Excursions description again and it said the total time of the excursion was only 4 hours...

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Following up...I got an email from Kathy at Horseplay Punta Cana.  She has is being picked up at 8:30 even though my E Ticket from Costco says 10:00 am.  She also has the tour dropping us back at the ship at 3:30 pm.  I am waiting for the Costco rep to get back to me.  The tour description states the total time as 4 hours.  I'm looking for other ideas for Punta Cana now.. not feeling too good about this excursion

 

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Hey Jled,

Unfortunately back from our cruise. Our cruise actually cancelled punta cana as a port due to weather, and we instead went to Samana, which turned out to be a good thing. I did talk to one of the port excursion people on board before it was switched, and she was from Domincan Republic. She said you could buy tickets for scape park at the port in punta cana for cheaper then through celebrity. We ended getting an excursion in Samana for ziplining through celebrity as I didn't have time to research anything in that port. It was only $110/ea though and the ziplines were amazing.

 

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Thank you so much for posting back..I was actually concerned with booking the Costco Shore Excursions group ziplining after reading posts about the port being cancelled...I cancelled that excursion since the information about the length of the tour and drive and pickup time kept changing..Didn't sound so good after all.  Now I don't have to worry about it.  I'm hoping to end up Ziplining.  I tried emailing Scape Park but never got a response so I am just going to see what happens..( I am totally a planner so I hate just going with the flow).  I'm so glad it all worked out great for you and again..thanks so much for following up!

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I normally don't book cruise ship excursions unless i'm pressed for time.  I booked the celebrity excursion for scape park because it seemed to me about the same price as the scape park website.  Am I missing something?  The excursion i booked is called the adventure park with beach escape.   

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