What would a trip to Punta Cana be without grabbing some tasty Dominican eats at one of the local restaurants?
While the DR isn’t typically thought of a foodie Mecca, it does have world class restaurants with an amazing variety of traditional and international cuisine.
Punta Cana is one of the best spots in all of the DR to sample these traditional dishes, such as the “bandera,” a popular Dominican dish of rice, beans, and meat.
I’ve selected some of the best reviewed and locally renown hotspots for dining if you find yourself in the Punta Cana area!
When you think of “tropical paradise,” one of the images that comes to mind is eating right on the beach, in view of the waves and palm trees, the wind in your hair, exotic but tasty food on your plate, amazing drinks, and good times.
If you could take all of that and manifest it into an actual location, the Jellyfish Restaurant in Punta Cana would be it.
Designed in the style of a giant beachside cantina, this immensely popular restaurant sits right on the beach, and is a favorite for weddings and special occasions.
You can sit inside at the modern, sleek bar, or dine outside under the palm trees with an ocean view.
The best part of Jellyfish is the food. They focus on seafood and shellfish, as the name implies, and do so with all the luxury of a five star restaurant.
Despite their location and food, they are also rather affordable. They are one of the more expensive restaurants in the DR, but most people agree you get a lot of mileage for your money here.
If fancy and exotic is what you have in mind, you can’t go wrong with the Jellyfish Restaurant.
An historic restaurant situated right on the lagoon, Lorenzillo’s is one of the staples of Punta Cana beach nightlife.
World class seafood and customer service are just a taste of what you’ll find here. While more casual than Jellyfish, don’t let that fool you. Lorenzillo’s is the perfect place for a family gathering, business meeting, romantic outing, or celebration of any kind.
The atmosphere here is something people rave about. It’s the perfect fusion of your favorite cozy bar & grill with an exotic beachfront resort style.
Their main claim to fame is in being a “live lobster house,” so seafood is what they do best. However, they offer a variety of dishes, from filet mignon to bacon-encrusted chicken breast. All at reasonable prices.
If you need a place where you’re guaranteed to have a great time, this is it.
This tiny location is also located conveniently on the beach, right on the grounds of the Punta Cana Resort and Club. It’s the quintessential beachside eatery, with nothing but great service and great food to offer.
Despite its size, it makes up for it in convenience and quality. Playa Blanca is a staple of the Resort and Club area and gets nearly unanimous five star reviews.
Their main focus is on serving exotic drinks right on the beach – you don’t have to travel far to have a great time in the DR.
Playa Blanca is also home to renown chef Santiago Salamanca.
La Cava Kitchen & Bar
This interesting little restaurant serves a variety of Dominican cuisine as well as American favorites. It has everything from chicken wings to sushi, if you can believe that.
La Cava is a modern fusion style restaurant that is more like a lounge than anything, but sports some of the best food in the area. Its unique combination of DR seafood dishes and international fare make it a popular spot simply for grabbing drinks and some guaranteed great food.
Their ratings and reviews speak for themselves. Not only is their drink selection remarkable, the sheer variety and quality of their food, even their appetizers, is impressive. The atmosphere is an added bonus.
Definitely don’t want to miss this place!
Bachata Rosa Punta Cana
This was my pick for more “traditional” fare for great restaurants in Punta Cana. Bachata Rosa combines traditional Dominican Republic dishes with plenty of class.
This restaurant hasn’t been around for very long but it is already rather famous, being the product of Juan Luis Guerra, the Dominican Republic star. He opened it, and it has since garnered tons of praise.
Eating here is a true “experience” in every sense of the word. Classic atmosphere combined with modern flair, as well as the entire place being somewhat of a dedication to Dominican Republic music, art, and culture.
The inside of the restaurant is styled after a Spanish piazza or open eating area outside, with building facades and even a bus.
It’s also the perfect place to catch live music and entertainment in Punta Cana. Since opening, it has become a go-to spot for nightlife. It is a true “rock café” and deserves a look for anyone who is planning on staying in Punta Cana.