There are some wonderful (playas) beaches near Santo Domingo (east and west of the city), but unfortunately the beaches in Santo Domingo (the city itself) are either small and dirty or private (owned by the Dominican Navy). Santo Domingo sits on a rocky bluff overlooking the Caribbean Ocean. This makes for wonderful views of the Caribbean while having a great dinner or walking along the malecon (seaside), but because of the rock bluff the few beaches in Santo Domingo are not worth going to.
If you want to enjoy the sand on your feet, the sun on your head, a nice Caribbean breeze on your face, and a wonderful view of the water, you need to head to one of these four beaches near Santo Domingo; Playa Juan Dolio, Playa Boca Chica, Playa Guaycanes, or Playa Najayo.
The good news is that all the beaches near Santo Domingo are only 30 to 50 minutes from the center of Santo Domingo and all the beaches make for a great day or half day trip. There are more beaches near Santo Domingo than the ones listed above, but the reason I have mentioned these four are for their location, attractions, amenities, the quality of the beach and the overall experience you will have while visiting anyone of these beaches just outside of Santo Domingo.
What All The Beaches Near Santo Domingo Have in Common
All the beaches near Santo Domingo are on the Caribbean side of the island that is located on the southern part of the Dominican Republic. Once you arrive at any of the beaches you will have chairs, umbrellas, tables, etc., so you will be comfortable while you visit the beach. These beaches all have restaurants and bars either on the beach or very close to the beach. Many of the restaurants/bars on the beach have the chairs, umbrellas, etc. and will allow you to enjoy your whole day there.
Worth mentioning about beaches found in the Dominican Republic is many of them blend the beaches, bars and restaurants together. This is usually found at the center of the beach and by walking a few minutes in either direction, it can be just you, sand and the water. The restaurants/bars make for a great place to set up a base camp for the day as you will have access to shade, food & drink, and bathrooms.
Once you have found your perfect spot on the beach, you will be able to enjoy a classic beach-style Dominican lunch or dinner consisting of some of the best tasting whole fried fish you have ever had, accompanied by fried plantains. If you aren’t a fan of the traditional style Dominican beach food, there are other items on the menu. Don’t forget to ask for your favorite rum drink or to try our local beer, a nice cold Presidente.
With these beaches being located on the Caribbean side of the island there will be a nice gentle Caribbean breeze and calm waters no matter which beach you pick near Santo Domingo.
Is the only beach near Santo Domingo that is east of the city. This is one of my favorite beaches as it is off the beaten path and I have never seen it overcrowded like some of the other beaches near Santo Domingo. What makes this beach unique and worth going to is it has a rustic and simple charm, and very good, but inexpensive food. I have bought some of the best tasting whole fried fish I have ever eaten for $10 USD. The beach itself is in the center of a long narrow cove with bluffs on both sides. It is quite picturesque. [more info on Playa Najayo]
Safe, Secure, Comfortable & English-Speaking Transfers
This probably is the preferred beach for visitors. It has a little of everything; picturesque views, a tranquil beach surrounded by restaurants (seafood, Italian, Dominican), bars, and yet when you walk to either the right or left of the center of the beach within 5 minutes you will be walking down the beach by yourself. With so much to offer this is easily the #1 visited beach by our clients. [more info on Playa Juan Dolio]
This beach made the list not because of the beach itself, but because of some of the places located on the beach and because this beach is the nearest to Santo Domingo. In Boca Chica you will find higher- end locations like Neptunos or the Marina, middle of the road places like Porto Rosadoor, and the Beach House to enjoy the views, a drink, and some great local and international dishes -not to mention being able to walk out to the beach from any of those locations for a relaxing swim.
Boca Chica also has a row of bars/restaurants located in the harbor that have great party atmosphere if that is what you are looking for. One of my favorite locations is Playa Maximo. This bar/restaurant is right on the water, has great music and is a fun place to enjoy Boca Chica – day or night.
If you wanting to enjoy a beach just for the beach, this is not the place to go. [more info on Playa Boca Chica]
This beach can be considered a smaller sister beach to Jaun Dolio both for its proximity to Juan Dolio and for having the same type of feel, but just smaller and a little quainter. This beach isn’t nearly as well-known as the other beaches near Santo Domingo and I find myself going here when the other beaches are a bit crowded.
If you are visiting Santo Domingo, I would defiantly plan on saving at least one day for whichever beach suits your personality best. [more info on Play Guayacanes]