Punta Cana, located on the east coast of the Dominican Republic, has become internationally renowned as a beautiful tropical vacation paradise with luxurious, eco-chic, value-priced, accommodations. In fact, Punta Cana has now become the #1 tourist destination in the entire Caribbean — and this amazing transformation has occurred over just 28 years! This news has been reported in many of the popular travel magazines and travel websites. I want you to know that this stat is based on REAL data, not just marketing hype. The stats are gathered by the Caribbean Tourism Organization, a non-profit which keeps close tabs on 29 countries in the Caribbean Region.
Below, I will discuss this data in more detail. My discussion will center around the data released in 2010 as the Caribbean Tourism Organization has not yet published the December stats for 2011 so there is not yet a complete data set for that year. However, if you study the data available for the first 11 months of 2011, the overall trends remain the same.
The Dominican Republic received more non-resident airport arrivals than any other country in the Caribbean, easily beating out Cuba, the second most popular tourist destination. The following is a quick reference list for you to view the top 10 Caribbean destinations along with the total number reported for non-resident airport arrivals:
1. Dominican Republic – 4,124,543
2. Cuba – 2,531,745
3. Cancun Mexico – 2,106,485
4. Jamaica – 1,921,678
5. Puerto Rico – 1,369,814
6. The Bahamas – 1,368,053
7. Aruba – 825,451
8. The US Virgin Islands – 691,194
9. Martinique – 476,492
10. St. Maartin – 443,136
Now, let’s break these stats down even more into European travel, US American travel, and Canadian travel. Europeans pick the Dominican Republic overwhelmingly as their #1 favorite Caribbean vacation spot. Their next favorite is Cuba. The United States has a close 4 way race between Cancun Mexico, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. Cancun edges out the…