Puerto Plata translates to mean Silver Port, and today the region is affectionately known as the “Silver Coast.” Its location between the Atlantic Ocean and the Cordillera Septentrional mountains have given it a warm, dry climate, with winds perfect for watersports, as well as an unhurried atmosphere, which lingers from its days as a small fishing province. Come here today to discover plush resorts alongside quaint seaside villages.
The province’s capital is San Felipe de Puerto Plata, or just simply Puerto Plata. This city is renowned for its beautiful urban beaches, notably the long Playa Dorada, which is fronted by luxury resorts and the acclaimed 18-hole Robert Trent Jones Golf Course. Amble along the Malecón seafront promenade and hop in the Teleférico cable car to zip up to the flat-topped Pico Isabel de Torres for far-reaching views. See remnants of colonial times at the imposing 16th-century Fort San Felipe, which now hosts a military museum and offers incredible sea views.
Outside of the city, life in Puerto Plata revolves around the beach. Outdoor activities abound; the region is one of the best in the country for scuba diving. Sosua is famed for its reefs, canyons and shipwrecks. Try snorkeling in the idyllic Playa Grande and the Gri Gri Lagoon, both of which are found in the tranquil fishing village of Río San Juan.
The former fishing hamlet of Cabarete is now the region’s adventure sports capital. Venture to this modern, upmarket resort for ideal windsurfing, surfing and kitesurfing conditions. Shops, hotels and restaurants line the resort’s only street and a relaxed yet cosmopolitan vibe pervades.
For a different experience, head to the town of Monte Cristi, one of the oldest European cities in the New World. Explore the local beaches and the Parque Nacional Monte Cristi’s wildlife-filled mangrove coast.
Gregorio Luperón International Airport, also known as Puerto Plata Airport, serves the northern part of the country. Many resorts offer airport transfers for their guests. Taxis and buses are available, but more remote destinations can be difficult to access via public transportation so rent a car to properly explore.