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So, the wife thinks she wants to go to an all-inclusive resort for vacation this summer. I have never been out of the United States, so I have to depend on the opinions of others like travel agent friends or internet friends! We have been looking at the Riviera Maya section of Mexico, and her boss went to Punta Cana, DR last summer. He recommends going to Punta Cana, and my travel agent friend recommended a place in Playa del Carmen. I have been looking at both on the internet for a couple of days, and they are close to the same in price.

Has anyone gone to an all-inclusive in either of the two above locations, and if so, what did you like or dislike about the place? Also, with all the crap going on in Mexico, I kind of wonder if it would be a good place to visit right now, even though everyone says as long as you are not near the border, and stay in a resort village, you should be alright. Punta Cana supposedly is the fastest growing resort area in the Caribbean right now, so it may be the better place.

Decisions, decisions, decisions!!!
 

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So, the wife thinks she wants to go to an all-inclusive resort for vacation this summer. I have never been out of the United States, so I have to depend on the opinions of others like travel agent friends or internet friends! We have been looking at the Riviera Maya section of Mexico, and her boss went to Punta Cana, DR last summer. He recommends going to Punta Cana, and my travel agent friend recommended a place in Playa del Carmen. I have been looking at both on the internet for a couple of days, and they are close to the same in price.

Has anyone gone to an all-inclusive in either of the two above locations, and if so, what did you like or dislike about the place? Also, with all the crap going on in Mexico, I kind of wonder if it would be a good place to visit right now, even though everyone says as long as you are not near the border, and stay in a resort village, you should be alright. Punta Cana supposedly is the fastest growing resort area in the Caribbean right now, so it may be the better place.

Decisions, decisions, decisions!!!


Dominican Republic

any of the Riu resorts
 

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Went to the Riviera Maya Spa Palace for a company trip, would recommend it again, especially if you do some of the guided tours to Xel-Ha and Tulum.

I would not go outside the compound except on guided trips or in large groups, this is the same advice as any large city in the US :cool:
 

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So, the wife thinks she wants to go to an all-inclusive resort for vacation this summer. I have never been out of the United States, so I have to depend on the opinions of others like travel agent friends or internet friends! We have been looking at the Riviera Maya section of Mexico, and her boss went to Punta Cana, DR last summer. He recommends going to Punta Cana, and my travel agent friend recommended a place in Playa del Carmen. I have been looking at both on the internet for a couple of days, and they are close to the same in price.

Has anyone gone to an all-inclusive in either of the two above locations, and if so, what did you like or dislike about the place? Also, with all the crap going on in Mexico, I kind of wonder if it would be a good place to visit right now, even though everyone says as long as you are not near the border, and stay in a resort village, you should be alright. Punta Cana supposedly is the fastest growing resort area in the Caribbean right now, so it may be the better place.

Decisions, decisions, decisions!!!
Got passports that won't expire within 6mos of your expected return date? If not get them now.
 

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Been to Plays Del Carmen before. Any sight that you want to see book them through the hotel where you stay, the hotel will look out for you and make sure you get picked up for your trips. All inclusive isn't what it is cracked up to be. Find a good taxi driver and rent him for your stay. You will be aways from town.
 

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Went to Excellence Punta Cana for my honeymoon last July. If you're going in the summer, be prepared for humidity that will have every inch of your body covered in sweat within 2 minutes of exiting your room. None of the buildings or restaurants really have enough a/c to do much more than take the edge off.

That said, it's beautiful, relaxing, and well done. If going again in the summer, I'd personally elect to go to a smaller island that gets more ocean wind. St. Thomas, for example, didn't seem quite as hot & humid, with the wind blowing enough to not even need a/c.

Oh, and don't drink the water.... you'll probably still get a stomach bug, but it's not the end of the world.

edit: ...and the all-inclusive thing. Here's the deal. Unless you're a really big drinker, it's probably not all it's cracked up to be. We were there for 7 days, and it felt like we did nothing but eat & drink. I personally would prefer a non-inclusive resort in an area where I could go off the resort a bit. Not really reasonable in Punta Cana, though... all inclusive is really the only option.
 

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Dominican Republic

any of the Riu resorts
Stayed at a Rui resort in Playa del Carmen. Room was large and beautiful. Food was great. Right on a beautiful beach. Took a tour to Chichen Itza and Coba. Only problem was I only booked 5 days and ran out of time. Should have booked a 7 day trip. This was in early October and the weather was perfect.
 

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I've been to both. For my honeymoon we went to Punta Cana, DR and stayed at the Iberostar Bavarro. It was absolutely the best trip we've ever been on. I would HIGHLY recommend this place. The food, drink, service were all top-notch. We did excursions almost every day and enjoyed them to the fullest. The jungle safari was amazing. We went June 1st and while the humidity is high, there was a constant breeze coming off the ocean which really helped keep things cool. The wife and I want to go back for our 10-year anniversary.

Two years before that, I won a trip through work to the Riviera Maya and stayed at the Moon Palace Resort. We went in May. It was nice, but no where near as nice as Punta Cana. They aren't even in the same ballpark. We did do the Xel-ha and Tulum excursions and those were very fun. But again, no comparison to this and Punta Cana.
 

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My oldest brother just came back from an all-inclusive vacation to Cozumel (across from playa del carmen). He said it was very secure and they were taken as a group to explore the ruins and more. The only time I went to those places was when I was a truck driver in Mexico (not the same:rant:).
 
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