The truth is that there are dozens of Dominican Republic resorts that say they’re great for kids. However, some hotels really go the extra mile. We’ve found everything from amazing water parks to children’s spas, pretty beaches, extensive activities, and child-friendly pools (not to mention breakfasts with SpongeBob Squarepants). From Punta Cana to a private island in Samana Bay, we’ve found your go-to kid-friendly options. Read on for the best family resorts in the Dominican Republic and start planning your next trip.
If you want to compare these properties with the best family resorts in the entire Caribbean, check out our list here.
Named after the famous children's television network — and with everything from decor and activities inspired by it — perhaps there's no surprise that the Nickelodeon Resort Punta Cana takes the cake when it comes to Dominican Republic family resorts. This all-inclusive property is designed for kids (to the point where it’s unlikely adults without young ones in tow would want to stay here — unless they were really into Nickelodeon). Rooms feature kid-friendly amenities and Nickelodeon-inspired decor, while regular meet-and-greets and character breakfasts keep little ones enchanted. Yes, SpongeBob Squarepants makes frequent appearances. Along with a colorful water park and a great stretch of beach, there’s a kids’ club offering a ball pit, toys and games, and supervised activities. Oh, and don't forget Slime Time!
The Punta Cana edition of the popular Hard Rock Cafe franchise, this gargantuan mega-resort on its own white-sand beach is like a town unto itself. That means tons of features for visitors of all ages — not just partying adults. The extensive Hard Rock kids’ club offers activities such as arts and crafts and Spanish lessons along with toys, games, and even entertainment just for kids. Other kid-friendly highlights include a climbing wall, mini-golf, a video-game arcade, and even a kids’ pool with two waterslides.
A kids' haven that's not quite directly on the beach, this 525-room all-inclusive resort claims to have the largest resort water park in all of the Caribbean. That's pretty impressive given the competition, like the Nickelodeon Punta Cana. It also makes this a no-brainer when it comes to picking a Dominican Republic family resort. Kids of all ages (and their parents) careen down slides into shallow pools, get soaked by enormous suspended buckets of water, and brave the exciting wave pool. Clubs for kids and teens ensure that they will have plenty to do when they're not getting soaked.
In addition to one of the largest pools in the D.R. — with shallow spots for the little ones — Dreams Punta Cana offers extensive child- and teen-oriented amenities. The Explorers' club provides a full schedule of activities for young children, such as nature tours and "Looking for Shells and Snails" from morning until evening. The Dreams kids' club has large indoor and outdoor play areas and also offers childcare. For teens, the resort staff hosts organized sporting events, and there's even a "teen disco" at night. There's also an active lifeguard on duty on the beach.
Part of the Barcelo Bavaro Palace resort, this family-focused section offers tons for kids. Rooms come with family-friendly touches big and small that make a huge difference, from separate rooms for children to minibars with milk and juice boxes. There’s also an exclusive waterpark for Family Club guests, and everyone gets access to the pirate-themed waterpark and wave pool at the main resort. Other features include a supervised kids’ club with a ball pit, videogames, and a playground plus a space for teens with a bowling alley, laser tag, and a booze-free nightclub aimed at adolescents.
A kids' club with a large playground and a children’s pool with slides are two of the family-friendly highlights at this all-inclusive, 658-suite resort. Its attractive setting, affordable prices, and compact layout (no shuttle) that puts everyone within walking distance to the beach are additional bonuses. Keep in mind that there are both family-friendly and adults-only sides to the Majestic Colonial, meaning everyone can have exactly the vacation they're craving.
The beachfront Now Onyx is set up so that kids and adults can enjoy amenities together, with children’s menus in all of the restaurants and even spa treatments specifically for kids. Babysitting is also available and there’s a saltwater pool especially for kids. The Explorer’s Club for Kids offers play areas and arts and crafts, while the Zone Teen Club targets older kids with videogames, foosball, and a climbing wall.
A quiet alternative to some of the more boisterous kid-friendly resorts in Punta Cana. Eden Roc at Cap Cana features plenty for all ages, with luxury dining, an excellent sports center, a spa with outdoor hydrotherapy pools, and elegant, airy suites and villas. Kid-specific amenities include Koko Kids' Club, named after a resident pet parrot (kids get three hours here a day, free of charge). There's also a kids' spa plus a shallow lagoon with kayaks that kids can take out for a paddle.
With fewer than 200 suites, this family-friendly section of Paradisus Palma Real all-inclusive offers a serene, luxurious environment. The never-ending pool complex features children’s areas, slides, and a paddling pool. Guests have free access to the services, facilities, and restaurants at next door Palma Real -– particularly the beach area, which this property lacks. Parents will likely appreciate the Kids Zone (which has a rock climbing wall and trampoline) and babysitting services, while all can enjoy the daily excursions, quality restaurants and bars, and personal concierge service.
There's plenty to keep the kiddos happy at this all-inclusive mega-resort: a water park, basketball court, go-cart track, mini-golf course, tennis courts, and animation activities at the pools and beach (which is, by the way, a great place for building sand-castles while parents relax in the lounge chairs).
The largest of four Paradisus resorts in Punta Cana, this 683-room property still manages to feel uncrowded due to its expansive grounds. The resort is a bit more luxurious than the neighboring Bavaro Princess All Suites Resort and Iberostar Bavaro. Special features for kids include a climbing area, children's pool, a kids' club with arts and crafts, and a variety of toys, games, and organized activities. They also offer evening entertainment just for kids, including mini-discos, face painting, and balloon animals.
This upscale boutique resort has 132 classic one-bedroom units (some adjoining) with separate living/dining areas and pull-out sofas. The beach area is a good hike away, but the tangerine bikes are useful for getting around, and it's not too far to walk to the large pool complex (which has a pool for children), fitness center, yoga studio, and Asian-themed spa. The Kids’ Zone here is particularly enticing, with a climbing wall and a trampoline.
The 1,600-room resort attracts plenty of families with its relaxed vibe and numerous on-site features, such as a kid-friendly water park -- complete with slides, bridges, and colorful sea creatures for climbing -- a massive theater with daily and nightly shows for kids and adults alike, a kids' club, and a teens' club and teen disco.
The Majestic's kids' club has a mini-castle and a water feature with slides. There's also a game area with billiards, foosball, Nintendos and movies. Popular evening activities for kids of any age include highlights such as magic shows, and Babyland offers entertainment for children under three years of age accompanied by a parent or a nanny (babysitting service is available for a fee). But as at any Dominican resort, the beautiful, long-spanning pool is what kids will love most.
This 708-room upscale resort a 10-minute drive from downtown Bavaro aims to appeal to guests of all ages. The focal points here are the large, music-filled pool area and the mock town center -- not the small strip of beach. There are lots of activities for kids and teens, like a kids' club, live theater, and teen-oriented game building with bowling alley.
The Melia Caribe features a Flintstones-themed kids club with boulders and dinosaurs aplenty as well as an elaborate Flintstones pool, complete with colorful play structures, waterslides, and animal-print lounge chairs. But the main highlight of this resort is its massive, 450-square-foot family suite, which comes with two pull-out sofa beds that have "themed children's bedding" in addition to a big bed for parents.
From swimming to sand castles, pageants to pool tables, this resort has tons of activities for kids. The "Mini-Club" (a daily kids club) has a playground, miniature pool tables, and loads of games. The entertainment staff also organizes activities throughout the day for children. But for most kids, the massive pool with ample shallow sections and a separate pool for children is the main attraction.
Disney-themed cocktails and children's menus put the focus on the kids. Sizable junior suites give families enough room with either a single king-size bed or two queens, along with a separate living area with an additional sofa bed for kids. Mini-Club Principito has three rooms painted with Disney characters and a backyard playhouse. Plus, there's a separate nap-time space with brand-new cribs and kid-size beds. High chairs are available everywhere, and all three a la carte restaurants offer a separate kids menu.
At first glance, this upscale golf-and-wellness-focused property on a white-sand beach may seem geared towards adults, but it’s an ideal option for families, too, with rooms that have their own kitchenettes and up to two bedrooms and babysitting services on request. There’s a pool complex with children’s areas and slides, while The Reserve section of the resort next door offers a climbing wall and a trampoline that older kids and teens can go use, free of charge.
Casa de Campo may be one of the D.R.'s original resorts, but the 7,000-acre behemoth still has plenty to keep families entertained, including a beautiful beach and activities such as horseback riding and tennis. A kids' club and teens' room provide games and movie nights, and the family fun zone hut offers indoor and outdoor activities. Families can also hire nannies to either assist with children during the day (while parents are present) or babysit in the guest room or villa at night.