My family stayed at the Tortuga Bay in Punta Cana in late July of this year. Tortuga Bay is ideal for a quiet couple’s getaway, but not ideal for a family vacation with younger children.
First, there are different levels of accommodations at this resort. We stayed at Tortuga Bay, which is comprised of approximately 16 units and separated from the rest of the resort. We loved the rooms, the beach, the service and the food. Because we were with children, we had two bedroom suite and were blown away when our “room” was a 1,500 square foot room with two separate gorgeous bedrooms and a large comfortable living area in the middle. The suite was ideal for a couple with two children. There was a nice kitchenette, French doors that opened onto the lawn which then led to the beach, and the décor was incredible. The room was so nice that we had dinner in the room twice because the room and setting were so special.
Though you would not need a room this large for a “couple’s get-away,” I would highly recommend Tortuga Bay for a couple’s get-away.
For the adults and children, the “Kids Club” was not really the type of Kids Club that we were looking for. By this I mean that the facility was not geared for anything other than a small number of very young (4 years or less) children. While there were many other activities which older children COULD enjoy, the resort is set up in a way that necessitates that the parents are with the children during the activity. While we don’t want to avoid our children during holidays, we do like to stay at a resort where there is a Kids Club or some supervised activity that can keep the children occupied and happy independently, without the necessity of us being present at all times. Unfortunately, that was not the case at Tortuga Bay. In other words, there were things the kids enjoyed, but you had to be there with them. Perhaps there is a more extensive kids’ club “in season,” but not so during July.
We went fishing from the resort and had a wonderful time. The boat was booked right at the resort and left from the dock at the water sports center. The Captain, mate, boat and fishing were EXCELLENT, albeit expensive.
We also did a segway tour. I’ve always wanted to ride a segway, and it took just one time to get it “out of my system.” Riding a segway is pretty cool, but not without risks. A rather large fellow who chose to ride a segway wearing only a speedo in our group “wiped out” and had some pretty significant cuts and scrapes. It’s worth doing once, but I would not make it the centerpiece of a trip.
There are fresh water lagoons on a nature preserve in the middle of the resort. The larger one is approximately a 15-minute walk into the preserve from the resort, and it was a wonderful experience. Our only regret is that we did not take snorkeling gear with us when we went to this lagoon. I would describe a visit to the lagoon as a “must do.”
I took the kids (ages 6 and 8) to the Macao Surf Camp, which is about a 50-minute drive from the resort. If you’re interested in surfing and are a beginner, I highly recommend the trip to the Macao Surf Camp.
I was not golfing on the trip, but the golf facilities looked incredible. If you’re a golfer and/or looking for a couple’s get-away, Tortuga Bay is just what the doctor ordered.
We were VERY impressed with the food. The breakfast buffet was extremely good, and the fresh seafood dishes were OUTSTANDING throughout the day and all restaurants at the resort.
Here are the only “negatives” that I observed:
- “Kids Club” limitations as noted above.
- Service in the restaurants can be SLOW, which is okay since you’re in the islands.
- Water skiing lessons for our children consisted of one person taking our kids out in a boat with me tagging along. I do not water ski, but I was “drafted” into handling the boat while the instructor was in the water with the kids. Frankly, I was not that comfortable operating a boat in unfamiliar waters, so I would describe the “water skiing lessons” as a misnomer. I would suggest that you go water skiing there only if you already know how to ski.
- Not really a “negative,” but you need to be very careful to avoid glitches due to the language barrier. I rather like the fact that not everyone speaks English well, as it adds to the sense of exotic travel, but it can result in getting 3 omelets instead of one. :)
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