The best Punta Cana Family Resort is Nickelodeon Resort. It is a fun place for kids. The swim-up suites are a big hit as is the water park. The Nickelodeon Resort in Punta Cana Dominican Republic hosts some really fun Nickelodeon activities as well as a kids club. If you are looking for a Family Friendly Dominican Republic Resort this is a great option.
It’s an expensive resort but you can visit Nickelodeon Resort on a budget with these tips.
How to Visit Nickelodeon Resort on a Budget
Flights: $482 taxes and fees for 4 (we used southwest companion pass and 38,000 miles)
Hotel: $2100 with kids stay free promotion)
Taxi Service: $104 Round Trip shuttle booked through Viator.com
Airport Parking: $25 ($5 / day economy parking)
Tips to make the most of your Stay at Nickelodeon Resort
- Request a child lock for the door in advance if you have a swim-up room. My husband had read they have them but didn’t realize they only put them on rooms where younger kids are staying. They got us one after the first night though.
- Room 2107 had a great location swim up to the bar and fresco which was 4 rooms down so no one is swimming in front of your room
- If your dining reservation is later than you want to show up early, they may let you in.
- If you really want a character meal check what days they are offered to ensure they are held during their stay.
- Get to the waterpark at 6:15 for the Orange Carpet event: you can reserve a table, get some drinks even eat a little- someone came by with chicken and beef kabobs – and they had the face, hair, and nail stations out by the stage but later moved them behind the rope. We chose not to walk the Orange Carpet as we took pictures when we arrived this gave us a chance to have a drink and get a good seat for the show
- For a chance to get slimed at the sit-down sliming station, participate in the pool games (adults can participate but only kids get slimed).
Overview of Nickelodeon Resort Punta Cana
Nickelodeon Resort, Punta Cana is a great resort for kids. Overall we had a great trip however it’s likely a one and done vacation for us. My kids said the water park, kids club, and swim-up room along with the Orange carpet event were their favorite parts.
Dominican Republic’s Nickelodeon Resort Entertainment
The reason to come to Nickelodeon Resort, Punta Cana is the themed events and activities. The events all happen at Nickelodeon’s place. Usually, there is 1-2 character meets per day. 1-2 ninja turtles will meet, Dora/ Boots, Chase/Marshal, Sponge Bob/Patrick. They also offer character breakfasts. The ninja turtle breakfast where you can meet all 4 ninja turtles is held Thursday mornings only. The other character meal is held more often and includes Sponge Bob, Patrick, the Fairly Odd Parents, Dora, Boots, Chase, and Marshall. The breakfast is basic but has enough variety to please everyone. I liked how organized the meets were while there wasn’t a ton of interaction it was easy to get nice pictures as u walk up to the characters.
The Orange Carpet Event
The Orange Carpet event is usually held Saturday nights, though for us it was held Sunday night as Monday was a holiday. 7 pm was the start time when we were there. The event starts out with nail polish, color hair spray and face paint stations, and a chance to walk the Orange Carpet. The 30-minute show includes almost all the characters and a chance to get up and dance with the characters (not directly with them) the kids favorite was dancing with the ninja turtles. Who knew those guys had great moves.
After the show which lasts about 30 min, you can help yourself to a buffet of food set up or kids can continue to dance. At 8 pm there was a magic show that was amazing. My family loves magic shows, and this was one of the best we have seen. One of the performers even walked around and let the kids touch the bird if they were in the front row.
During the day there was a Nickelodeon game event at the pool. Kids and some adults played games. In the end both my kids got to sit and get slimed with the other participants. You have the option to sign up and pay for your family to get slimed. We didn’t opt for this. Every day at 3pm there is a mass sliming which is where slime (green water) is filled in the big bucket of the water park.
Nickelodeon Resort Water Park
The water park was perfect for my kid’s age though my son (7) wasn’t allowed on the orange slides. There is no height restriction though staff will restrict older/taller kids when smaller kids were around. Our kids enjoyed the kids club though it didn’t seem amazing to us. They loved swimming in the giant ball pit and hiding deep in the balls. They participated in activities like candy making (marshmallow mixed with crushed cereal) and a lab where (as described by my son) they tried to mix 2 colors that wouldn’t mix together but then they added a third and they mixed.
Nickelodeon Resort Kids Club
The kids club is an open house from 12-2 each day to allow small kids in though any age can visit with parents during this time. The club closes from 5 pm-7 pm and reopens to allow parents an adult-only dinner. I am not sure I would walk 10-12 min to the kids’ club at the water park then 10-12 min back for dinner and back again. There’s a kid’s club near the restaurants that are for Sensatori guests and I think they should offer this for Nickelodeon guests with dining reservations.
Dining at Nickelodeon Resort
The resort offers several buffets, 2 during lunch and one at dinner time. They also have a couple restaurants available for lunch and dinner.
Wok Wok (5:30pm opening):
This is their Asian themed restaurant that requires reservations. The decor was nice, and I enjoyed the sushi. The main entrees were just ok. Pad tai was over cooked, my husband enjoyed the duck and fried rice, but the Szechuan beef wasn’t that spicy. The kids enjoyed the chicken and beef on a stick and eating French fries with chopsticks.
Space walker (5:30 pm opening):
If there is only one restaurant you visit that requires reservations this is the one to get. Not that the food is amazing, but the experience is a lot of fun for kids. The dessert alone is worth a stop. It’s not often we hear wow come out of our kids mouths. The filet at the meal was extremely tender and better then the Italian restaurant. Rib-eye was OK. The balls of cocktail sauce with the shrimp cocktail was an interesting experience as well. If you order the globe desert, make sure to order the assorted ice cream or something else for desserts as the cake inside the globe isn’t very good.
Verdello the Italian restaurant (5:30 pm opening):
We ate here the day we arrived. Service was slow and the food just OK. My filet was over cooked. The veal marshal was tender but didn’t taste like Marsala.
Burgerfi (5:30 pm opening):
No reservations needed. We didn’t make it here, but the kids would enjoy the giant burger being cut by a machete.
Aqua Bite: (opens 9am food at 9am)
are the water-park restaurant. The flat-breads are good and while not listed you can order plain cheese. Soft serve ice cream and slime drinks (Pina Colada with green dye) were our kid’s favorites, as well as hot dogs with green slime ketchup
Fresca (closes at 5pm)
A small shack located next to the swim up bar on the side of building 2 facing the side of the resort (not the middle people typically walk through). I enjoyed the ceviche (octapus/white fish and the shrimp), the grilled shrimp was very good and the pop tarts on a stick were made with sugar cookies so better then real pop tarts.
Sugar Cane: This is where we ate breakfast every morning and lunch once. Although alot of stations I would say the variety was just ok and food was good but not great. I wish they had more entrée selections during lunch. It was just side dishes and the grill.
Nickelodeon Resort, Punta Cana Hotel Rooms
Rooms 2113-2105 (odd numbered and probably going lower as well) -are on the same pool as the swim up bar that also has Fresca eatery which means you can swim to and from your room. 2113 is right in front of the bar so I personally would avoid but others may love the fact their kids can nap on the huge lounge on the patio while they sit and have some drinks. We had room 2107 so 4 rooms down and I would say it was ideal. We could swim up or back for a snack (or walk after swimming across to the otherwise) but far enough that we could not see the bar if sitting on our balcony we could sit and have privacy.
Regardless it shuts down by 5 pm and we almost never saw anyone walk or swim by our room after that. I would highly recommend a swim-up room. While we didn’t spend a ton of time in it we all enjoyed the novelty. I think if we were there longer would have spent more time there. The idea of kids swimming while we sat on our private patio or stopped at the swim-up bar and my favorite lunch spot all together makes me consider going back again.
Why it is a One and Done Trip for Us
My initial reaction to the resort is not wowed. We arrived after a long day of traveling and was not greeted with champagne and slime drinks . When talking to concierge we saw a tray with 2 champagnes go by. The water park is a distance from the hotel rooms easily a 15-20min walk.
The Water Park is pretty far away
There’s a shuttle that will take you from the restaurants to the water park, but it runs every 15min, so we rarely waited. You better not forget something important when you head out in the morning or it could be a 40min roundtrip walk. We chose to be ready before breakfast so we didn’t have to walk back to our rooms since the restaurants are in the middle.
The first day we forgot our towel cards, the staff working the check-in desk was nice enough to sign us towels out anyway.
Dinner Reservations can be hard to come by
I don’t like how the restaurant reservations work. The 3 restaurants we ate at were never more than half full. Yet always sold out and reservations only available if you had concierge which we happened to have but I am not sure if that is only because they are pushing word of mouth advertising and wanted us to experience the restaurants.
Sunday night was the Orange Carpet event. We had 6 pm reservations at Wok Wok, though we had asked for 5:30 and they didn’t have any. When we arrived at 5:30 way, there was no one there not one single person till 5:15. At that time 2 families arrived by 6 pm there were a couple of families waiting at the door. How could 5:30 possibly be sold out? The Italian restaurant was a bit busier and most tables were full at one point, but it took 15min before someone took our drink and meal order and that was after waiving a server down. Yes, to my husband’s dismay I waived down a server. After a long day of travel and not receiving welcome champagne I just wanted a glass of wine! The Italian restaurant was also very hot inside.
We expect more value from $800/ a day
For our family, most of our trips cost $800/day including flights and everything. We can travel all over the world within this budget. Booking the Nickelodeon resort we paid $700/nt with kids stays free promotion. We used Southwest companion passes which kept flight costs down and the overall trip in the moderate price range, but I wouldn’t say it’s a great value. The beach area is just ok, the resort layout isn’t great. the entertainment and the rooms were great.
The food and service should be improved. The buffet at lunch and dinner was not great. While they had many food areas I felt like there weren’t a lot of entree options. They need to figure out how to have the restaurants filled instead of people being turned away while over half the restaurant is empty. I really wish they opened the Sensatori kids club in the evening for Nickelodeon guests to enjoy an adult-only dinner.
Don’t Drink the Tap Water
Please note the tap water at the resort is not safe to drink (this is true throughout the Dominican Republic). The resort has bottled water readily available including by the sink for brushing your teeth. My husband and I agree we hate using bottled water for brushing teeth and rinsing toothbrushes but were thankful there was bottled water available pretty much everywhere we were.
We are glad we visited Nickelodeon Resort, Punta Cana. It was a lot of fun with the kids but we likely will not return as we don’t feel it is a great overall value.
Files to help you plan your visit
Menus and Food
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