We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Mpls
Level Contributor
13 posts
3 reviews
Save Topic
Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Has anyone been to both of these travel destinations? Wondering if they are safe outside the hotel area in town especially at night? What are pros/cons of each. Thank you.

Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
5,788 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Welcome to the forum! I've been to both and loved them both. In Playa we went out to Fifth Avenue at night and it seemed perfectly safe. A lot of people stay there in condo's and boutique hotels - we only stayed in all inclusives which are perfectly safe - well fenced and guarded. In any case, the violence that you hear of in Mexico is closer to the border and has to do with drug problems/corrupt police etc - a long way from the Riviera Maya. We never went outside the all-inclusive resorts at night in Punta Cana but as far as I've ever read, it's perfectly safe also. You may be better to look at resorts for pros and cons versus destination as it's very subjective. As far as the places we've been to, we did find the beach much nicer in Punta Cana and the food/drinks somewhat better in Playa but we will continue to travel to both places - in the end we usually make our choice based on the best deal and trying someplace new.

Mentioned in this post
Riviera Maya
Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, Mexico
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
British Columbia
Level Contributor
60 posts
31 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

I can just comment on Playa del Carmen, we've been there a couple of times and felt totally safe and we went out both day and night along fifth ave, and it was filled with tourists. I would definately go back! Looking forward to our first trip to Punta Cana next week :)

Mentioned in this post
Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Breda, The...
Level Contributor
2,280 posts
166 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Playa del Carmen, been there many times and loved it, never had one bad feeling, and lots more things to do and see of the resort.

I had twice a good time in Punta Cana but won´t return, Mexico is still my favorite, going in feb to Cuba to see and look around.

Mentioned in this post
Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Cuba
Cuba
Caribbean
Rhondda Cynon Taff...
Level Contributor
231 posts
45 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

We are looking at going to Punta Cana as we have been to Mexico for the last two years. We found it very save and took local transport everywhere, we never felt threatened or afraid

Mentioned in this post
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Michigan
Level Contributor
670 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Much more to do outside the resort in the RM. The beaches are set up as many smaller beaches with in some cases one resort on their own beach. Some of those stretches of beaches are just as nice as PC's beach IMHO. This is unlike Punta Cana's long expansive beach with most of the resorts on that stretch of beautiful beach.

The weather is warmer in Punta Cana during the "dead" of Winter than the RM. We had a couple of days in early February in the RM that didn't get to 75F with quite a strong wind that made it feel a little cool on the beach.

RM is my favorite Caribbean destination of all. I keep looking for a better one but have yet to find it. :) That being said....... When we want to plop ourselves down on a beach for a week and just relax Punta Cana is great. Can't comment on the safety in PC as I have never left the resort but I imagine it is fine. I have never felt unsafe in the Riviera Maya after dozens of trips all over the area staying at All Inclusives and non All Inclusives.

Mentioned in this post
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Caribbean
Caribbean
North America
Riviera Maya
Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, Mexico
Greensburg...
Level Contributor
445 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

Which resorts in RM would you say have beaches comparable to the ones in the D.R.?

Land O Lakes...
Level Contributor
306 posts
1 review
Save Reply
7. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

We considered going back to the Riviera Maya this year, but chose another trip to the DR instead. The increase in the violence as a result of the Mexican drugs wars definitely has become a concern.

Mentioned in this post
Riviera Maya
Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, Mexico
St. John's, Canada
Destination Expert
for Newfoundland and Labrador
Level Contributor
4,096 posts
77 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

We have been to both Riviera Maya and Punta Cana and like them both. we felt perfectly safe in RM as the violence is far away from the resort areas. We saw nothing that would make us feel unsafe.

A number of people warn you to be careful leaving the resorts in Punta Cana at night unless you taxi directly where you want to go. is not really a town, but a series of villages stretching for miles along a gorgeous beach. IMO less variety of off-resort excursions in Punta Cana.

That being said, we are booked to return to Punta Cana in April, but RM is not off the list for a return trip some year.

Mentioned in this post
Riviera Maya
Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, Mexico
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Tequesta, Florida
Destination Expert
for Puerto Aventuras, Punta Cana
Level Contributor
9,803 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

4httr:

We've found that the resorts in the Maroma area, Tulum area, Akumal area, and south of the marina in the Puerto Aventuras area have beaches that are comparable to those found along Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana. And they have great snorkeling directly off the beachfront.

We also found that the other beaches in the Riveria Maya region generally have sand and surf similar to those found in the northern Uvero Alto area of Punta Cana. But the sand in Punta Cana is actually quartz-based and does not get very hot from the sun, whereas the sand in the Riveria Maya is silica-based and heats-up quite a bit.

Hope this helps!

Mentioned in this post
Tulum
Tulum
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Akumal
Akumal
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Bavaro Beach
Bavaro Beach
17,073 Reviews
Dominican Republic
Punta Cana
Punta Cana
Dominican Republic
Riviera Maya
Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, Mexico
Uvero Alto
Uvero Alto
Dominican Republic
Michigan
Level Contributor
670 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Playa Del Carmen Mexico vs. Punta Cana which is safer/better

4httr (Pittsburgh)- Check out the Catalonia Play Maroma & Catalonia Royal Tulum (Adults Only). Anything in the Playacar Development has great beaches and is pretty much walkable to Playa Del Carmen. RIU has 3 or 4 Resorts in Playacar. My favorite thus far has been the Barcelo Maya Resort, especially for families. It has been able to pull off the very difficult. Very nice swimmable beach and..... excellent shore snorkeling as well. There used to be a Dreams Resort in Tulum but not sure if it is still there or not. Tulum is top 5 for me of all Caribbean beaches I have been to including the Virgin Islands, Anguilla and the Bahama's

Those are just a few of the ones I know have with great beaches, I'm sure there are many more. We don't use All Inclusive's for all of our trips to the area.

Mentioned in this post
Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Tulum
Tulum
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Caribbean
Caribbean
North America
Anguilla
Anguilla
Caribbean