Review by Michelle Bronsema Let's Take the Kids Travel client. Travelled to Punta Cana in April 2010
When we were deciding where to go for a family vacation, we gave our travel agent our criteria: a white sand beach, high quality accommodations and restaurants, and a great kids’ club. Club Med Punta Cana delivered on all these points, and we would definitely recommend this resort to other families.
The room was a perfect fit for our family of five: a rarity in the world of hotels and resorts. The two-bedroom suite boasted a master bedroom with a king-sized bed, a second bedroom with two single beds, and a sitting room with a daybed. A deck off each of the bedrooms expanded the living space nicely. The suite was clean and spacious, and comfortably housed our family for the week.
Both restaurants offered an extensive buffet featuring everything from chicken nuggets (presumably for the children) to gourmet creations (presumably for the adults). The culinary highlights for the kids included all the mangos daughter #2 could eat, soft-serve ice cream on demand, and “adult” drinks (minus the alcohol, of course). The culinary highlights for the adults included all the fresh fish we could eat, delectable desserts, and “adult” drinks (with the alcohol, of course).
We had heard that the beaches of Punta Cana were among the most beautiful in the Caribbean; we were not disappointed. The sand is soft and white, and the water is beautifully clear. The stretch of beach at the Club Med resort is protected by a coral reef, which kept the waves to a minimum, allowing the kids to float in the salt water to their heart’s content. There were so many palm trees along the beach that we had no trouble finding shade for the paler members of our family at the height of the sun’s strength. The temperature was quite high, but the ocean breeze cooled us off just enough to remain comfortable.
The resort offered so many activities, we could have gone from one to the next all day and not run out of things to do. From the enormous pool to the tennis courts, to archery and beach volleyball and aerobics, there was no chance that we could possibly be bored. And for those of us for whom a perfect vacation involves lying on the beach with several good books, I can’t imagine a more perfect setting in which to rest and relax.
While there were several options for day excursions outside the resort, we opted to remain on the resort and chose instead to go on a short snorkeling trip directly from the Club Med beach. We were taken out via power boat to a natural coral “pool” where we snorkeled for about an hour, which was ideal for the children. The currents were a little stronger than the kids were used to, but the guide was excellent about pointing out more protected areas to snorkel. The boat trip itself was an adventure, with the driver more than eager to make the ride interesting with some fancy wave-jumping, which became one of the trip highlights for our son.
The Mini Club Med was a great success with our seven-year-old son. He was kept busy every morning with archery, trapeze, trampoline, basketball, swimming, and sailing, all under the supervision of enthusiastic G.O.s. Every evening, the leaders would put on a high-energy, entertaining show with the kids and for the kids. The Mini Club was very well organized, and we never had any concerns about the safety or happiness of our son while he was in the care of the club leaders.
Our more reserved daughters, aged 9 and 10, preferred to remain with us for much of the vacation, and spent their days snorkeling off the beach, searching for seashells, and perfecting their underwater handstands. When the sun became too strong, they wandered over to the beach bar for some mango ice, and chilled out in the shade until the sea once again beckoned to them.
We were so pleased with the vacation at Club Med, and will definitely be recommending it to other families considering a Caribbean holiday. Our children now have wonderful memories to carry with them, and we had a much-needed time of relaxation.