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5 beautiful must-visit places in the Dominican Republic

Some places in this world are so beautiful and majestic that even the best photographers don’t always do them justice. From cascading waterfalls and lush rainforests to verdant fruit plantations, here's our rundown of five incredible places in the Dominican Republic you have to see to believe.

Damajagua Waterfalls
Damajagua Waterfalls: A hidden natural wonder

Only 20 kilometres from Puerto Plata lies a series of waterfalls – 27 to be exact! Nestled in the hills of the Northern Corridor, the Damajagua Waterfalls are one of the Dominican Republic's most beautiful landmarks. A variety of tours are available to take you through the falls, and as you wander along you’ll see lots of beautiful tropical plants and exotic birds—you can even learn the history behind their names and see some of them up close. Once you reach the top of the falls, you can actually slide or jump into a basin below! With pools that are stunning shades of blue and limestone rock formations carved by Mother Nature herself, the Damajagua Waterfalls are a sight to behold.

Sun-lounger lining sparkling pool at Be Live Collection Marien

Where to stay: Since the falls are so close to Puerto Plata, it may make the most sense to stay there. Be Live Collection Marien is right on the beach, features a beautiful pool and offers a wide range of dining options across seven restaurants. If your legs are feeling a bit sore after hiking at Damajagua Falls, you could also pamper yourself at the on-site spa. If you're travelling with the family, this resort features spacious accommodations designed to room families of five or more, lots of included activities for kids and adults alike and offers guests packages to tee off at the nearby 18-hole Playa Dorada Golf Course.

UNESCO World Heritage Site, Zona Colonial
Santo Domingo: Explore the oldest city in the Americas

Founded in 1492, the capital city of the Dominican Republic is home to immaculately preserved, colonial architecture and historical sites, and enjoys a lively culture and rich heritage. Santo Domingo is a unique combination of European style and Caribbean charm. At its centre is the Zona Colonial, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where you’ll find the oldest fortress and cathedral built in the Americas. The surrounding area is filled with many colonial buildings that have stood the test of time, but don’t think that this is just like any European city! You’ll find the streets filled with markets, artists and musicians who personify the lively culture of the Caribbean island. With such a fascinating blend of local influences coming together to create something unique, you can truly say there is no place on Earth quite like it!

Aerial view of beachfront Be Live Experience Hamaca Beach

Where to stay: While the hustle and bustle of the city can be exciting, you might want to have somewhere a bit more tranquil to rest your head. Be Live Experience Hamaca Beach is just outside Santo Domingo by the ocean, and welcomes guests with a host of tailored amenities suited to families, couples and groups. After a day of exploring, you can cool off in one of the five pristine pools and relax under a palapa on the exclusive private beach.

Catalina Island beach
Catalina Island: Underwater treasures

The glistening turquoise Caribbean waters surrounding this small island off the coast of the Dominican Republic offer a whole new world to explore. Snorkelling around Catalina Island is the closest you can get to being a mermaid, and there are a number of tours you could take advantage of to experience this beautiful island. As you discover this marine eco-system, you’ll see coral in every colour of the rainbow and a wide variety of aquatic creatures. You could come face to face with angelfish, snappers or parrotfish – they, along with countless other species, are native to the waters around the island.

Swimming pool with comfortable sun loungers

Where to stay: Catalina Island is across the bay from La Romana, a vibrant city surrounded by beautiful landscapes. You can appreciate these views from Be Live Collection Canoa, which is right next to Del Este National Park. This resort is just as lovely as the view – with modern rooms that feature a balcony or terrace, two pools and a white-sand beach. What's more, this resort caters to all types of travellers with an action-packed kids club, lots of included activities such as snorkelling and beach volleyball as well as a section just for adults that features a private pool and beach area.

Las Ondas Indigenous Cenote
Las Ondas Indigenous Cenote: A portal to the past

You’ll feel as though you’re travelling through time as you walk through the tropical forest and tunnels once inhabited by the ancient Taino Chiefdom of Higuey. At the bottom of the cave’s staircase is the Las Ondas Indigenous Cenote, an underground pool filled with sparkling crystal-clear water and surrounded by natural rock formations. The walls of the cave are adorned by the original Taino pictograms, ancient art preserved through time. Your guide will be able to tell you all about the tribe’s history, culture, rituals and daily life, as well as the flora, fauna, cave and cenote itself. You’ll not only have the chance to see these amazing petroglyphs up close, but you’ll be able to swim in the turquoise waters of the pool.

Private beach area at Be Live Collection Punta Cana

Where to stay: The closest city to the cenote is Punta Cana. If you want a resort that is just as beautiful as the cenote, Be Live Collection Punta Cana is set on a stretch of pristine beach protected by a coral reef. The area is calm for swimming with great snorkelling opportunities and the nine pools are surrounded by lush gardens. Whether you're travelling with the family or with your significant other, this resort features spacious rooms designed to accommodate families of five or more as well as elegant swim-up rooms for couples who want to enjoy a quiet afternoon relaxing in their pool. Both adults and families can enjoy their own sections, as the resort offers family-friendly amenities and a private beach area while adults can enjoy a private VIP lounge, butler service and much more.

Saona Island
Saona Island: Quintessential desert island

A picture of this place could easily become your favourite and long-time screen saver on your desktop. Situated a short catamaran ride away from the mainland, Saona Island is so picturesque that it has served as the backdrop for many shows and movies needing a “desert island”, such as Pirates of the Caribbean . You can swim in the natural pool, a crystal-clear lagoon filled with all sorts of marine life like starfish, before laying on the pristine white sands to sunbathe or cool off in the shade under one of the lush palm trees. This is one of those places in the world that's so beautiful, any picture you take will certainly be gorgeous.

Aerial view of Be Live Experience Hamaca Garden

Where to stay: If you want your whole vacation to be as exciting as your trip to Saona Island, Be Live Experience Hamaca Garden is an ideal option as it offers lots of included activities such as badminton, archery, beach volleyball, waterskiing, windsurfing and scuba diving. When you’re ready to take a break from all of the excitement, take a dip in one of the five pools, soak up the sun on the white-sand beach or spoil yourself at the on-site spa.

Be Live Hotels and Resorts are known for catering to all types of travellers. Featuring attractive properties in some of the top vacation hotspots in the Dominican Republic, these resorts treat their guests to quality service, delectable cuisine, exciting activities and entertainment and plenty of options for relaxation.

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