Entrance to Amber Cove Cruise Port

Visiting the Amber Cove Cruise Port in the Dominican Republic

Amber Cove Cruise Port, located along the northern coast of Hispaniola in the Dominican Republic, is a vibrant and inviting port of call operated by Carnival Cruise Line. The port of call lies within the Bay of Maimon in the Dominican Republic. Amber Cove is named after a semi-precious stone that is available in the Dominican Republic. The semi-precious stone is actually fossilized tree resin that is used to make jewelry on the island. Amber Cove is a beautiful 30-acre port that offers many activities to choose from. The moment you get off the ship, you will notice the lush greenery of the surrounding hills, the charming architecture at the entrance to Amber Cove, and the inviting water of the surrounding bay. 

Amber Cove – Carnival’s Port of Call in the Dominican Republic

This vibrant port destination was developed by Carnival Cruise Line and has a wealth of activities and attractions for cruise passengers of all ages to enjoy. While once in a while, you will see ships from other cruise lines, the majority of cruise ships that dock in Amber Cove are those that are part of Carnival Corporation, such as Carnival Cruise ships, Holland America, and Princess Cruises. Only two ships can dock here at a given time, which makes Amber Cove a perfect port to visit. The port is not crowded and is a great place to relax and enjoy the day. 

A great feature of Amber Cove is its relatively close location to Puerto Plata, which is only 8 miles away. You can easily explore Puerto Plata and experience the culture of the Dominican Republic. Those looking for adrenaline-pumping adventures can easily find them by signing up for excursions that are relatively close to Amber Cove. You will find stunning beaches, cultural experiences, and many shopping opportunities in Amber Cove and the nearby towns of the Dominican Republic. There’s something for everyone to enjoy in this exciting tropical port. Join us as we explore the wonderful port of Amber Cove.

View of Amber Cove
Amber Cove

Arriving at Amber Cove Cruise Port

As your cruise ship gets close to Amber Cove you will be greeted by breathtaking views of lush green hills, turquoise waters, and the pristine beaches of the coast and surrounding area of the Dominican Republic. Luckily, there is no need to tender at Amber Cove because you will be docking at the pier. This makes it easier to get off the ship and allows you to start exploring the area much quicker. 

You will be greeted by bike taxis as you walk off the gangway onto the pier. The bike taxis are available to give you a ride down the pier and help you get from the ship to the entrance of the Amber Cove shopping area much quicker. There is no charge to ride a bike taxi. However, the people pedaling the bike taxis do work very hard giving rides all the way to the shopping area. All they ask for is a tip and they leave the amount of the tip up to you. They do appreciate receiving tips for their effort. 

Entering Amber Cove Cruise Port

As you make your way down the pier towards the port entrance, the first thing you will notice is the architecture at the entrance to Amber Cove. You will enter Amber Cove through what looks like a Spanish Fortress and through a duty-free store. The design is a reminder of the historical significance of the region. Christopher Columbus discovered Hispaniola in 1490. The town of Puerto Plata was founded in 1502. The architecture of Amber Cove uses Spanish-style architecture reminiscent of its history. 

As you enter Amber Cove and pass the duty-free store, you can go towards the right or the left. If you go towards the left, you will enter the rest of the shopping area. If you go towards the right, you will enter the Aqua Zone area. Unfortunately, if you are not familiar with the layout of Amber Cove and the amenities available at this port, it can be easy to miss the Aqua Zone area. Most cruisers will be headed towards the left as the shopping area is very inviting, and this is the direction that takes you towards the bus parking lot for those who have signed up for shore excursions.  

Amber Cove Direction Sign
Amber Cove Direction Sign

The Shopping Area at Amber Cove Cruise Port

There are many shops to explore in this area. The shops include Diamonds International and Effy Jewelers, well known partners of Carnival. There are many other shops as well as locals selling artisan products. First, of course, you will visit the duty-free and tax-free store. This is the store that you will walk through as you enter Amber Cove. There are many items for sale here, including local rum, cigars, artisan souvenirs, t-shirts, and snacks. You can find just about anything you need.  

At Diamond International and Effy Jewelers, you will find a larger selection of jewelry available for purchase. If you visit Diamond International, you can pick up a free charm. This is a nice charm to add to a bracelet. The charm is different at each cruise port where Diamond International is found. There are many shopping opportunities available in the shopping area. You’re sure to find the perfect keepsake to commemorate your visit to Amber Cove.

There are a variety of places in the shopping plaza where you can purchase food and drinks if you would like a bite to eat or a beverage. You will also find a couple of car rental agencies if you would like to rent a car to explore the area. As you pass through the shopping plaza at Amber Cove, you will come to the area where the buses are waiting for shore excursion participants and where you can hire a taxi to go into the town of Puerto Plata

View of Amber Cove Shopping Area
View of Amber Cove Shopping Area

Things to Do in Amber Cove for Free

As I mentioned before, Amber Cove was developed by Carnival. Carnival put a lot of effort into developing the perfect cruise port for its customers. It is a complete port destination that offers many things to do. And a lot of those wonderful activities are free. The Aqua Zone offers several water activities that are free, you can swim in the pool, sunbathe, and explore the many areas at Amber Cove. While the food at Amber Cove is not free, you can always eat lunch on the cruise ship. There is no tender required to get to Amber Cove so going back and forth is relatively easy.

Things to Do at Aqua Zone in Amber Cove

Going towards the right as you enter Amber Cove is where you will find all the excitement. Walking to the right will take you to Aqua Zone, Amber Cove’s entertainment area. There is no fee to enter Aqua Zone or use their facilities, with a couple of exceptions. 

The Swimming Pool at Aqua Zone

At Aqua Zone, you can enjoy spending time in the swimming pool.  The swimming pool area is very large. The pool itself is large as well. It is divided into three sections which are connected by bridges. The pool also has a lazy river where you can leisurely float on a tube. There are many loungers available around the pool area that are available for everyone to use. The size of the area is so large that even if there are two cruise ships in port, there is room for everyone. We did not have any problems finding a lounger to use. The only part of the pool which may be crowded is right near the swim-up bar. As you go away from the swim-up bar, the pool is less crowded. 

The Water Slide at Aqua Zone

There are two water slides for you to enjoy at Aqua Zone. Both water slides are side by side slides. They circle around the edge of the pool area similar to the shape of a corkscrew and end in a splash zone specifically for the water slides. The water slides are fun to use and are available at no additional cost. The entrance to the water slide is located up a hill to the rear of the port area near the slides. Riders must be at least 4 feet tall to go down the water slides.  

The Children’s Splash Area at Aqua Zone

Right near the pool is the children’s splash area. The splash area is a great way for young children to play in the water and cool off without entering the pool. There are loungers near the splash pad where you can keep an eye on your children while spending time relaxing. The splash area has a tree that splashes water, small water slides to enjoy, and a fish that children can climb on. 

The Zipline at Amber Cove Cruise Port

There are other activities you can enjoy besides pool activities at Aqua Zone. One of the popular activities is the 650 foot zipline which takes you over the Aqua Zone area. There is an additional charge for riding the zipline of $20 per adult and $10 for children. If you enjoy riding zip lines, there is an unlimited ride option for $28.00.

Zipline over the pool area at Amber Cove
Zipline over the pool area at Amber Cove

Other Activities Available at Aqua Zone

The Aqua Zone entertainment area has other activities to keep you or your teenagers entertained. There is a half basketball court available where your teenagers can play a round of basketball. If you or your teenagers like volleyball, you are in luck. There is a sand volleyball court available as well as a giant chess board.

Food and Dining at Amber Cove Cruise Port

It is a good idea to keep in mind that you can easily walk back to the ship for lunch. The cost of your cruise includes eating lunch on the ship. If you decide not to walk to the ship, there are a few places to grab a bite to eat and a cocktail in port. Keep in mind that the dining places in port are an additional cost. If you purchased the Cheers! drink package, the package does not transfer to the port area. Any drinks you order are an additional cost.

There are several places where you can get a bite to eat and a drink while in port. In the shopping center area, you will find Coco Cana Bar and Restaurant. You can purchase snacks and drinks at the Marketplace store. In the Aqua Zone area you will find a Nathan’s food truck near the pool. You can also visit the Coco Cana Poolside Lounge which also has a swim-up bar. If you walk up the hill you will find Sky Bar. This is a great place to have a drink and a small bite to eat while enjoying the view. If you are near the cabana area or would like to check out the area, you will find the cabana bar. While you can visit the Cabana bar, you will not be able to access the cabana boardwalk unless you have rented a cabana. 

Watersport Rentals at Amber Cove

Amber Cove is located in the Bay of Maimon. The bay is calm, and it is a great place to kayak or paddle board. There are several rentals available to keep you busy and help you enjoy your stay in Amber Cove. Watersport rentals include kayaks, stand-up paddle boards, and aqua cycles. You will also find pedal boats for rent that fit up to four persons. There are additional rentals to make your visit more pleasant, such as umbrellas, pool floats and noodles, and WiFi.

WiFi, Bottomless Bubbles, and the Cheers Drink Package at Amber Cove

If you have purchased any specialty packages such as Bottomless Bubbles, Cheers!, or the WiFi package, it is important to know that none of the packages transfer to the port. When you order any drinks in port, you will have to pay out of pocket for them. If you need WiFi while in port, it is available for $8.00 for the whole day.

Cabana Rentals at Amber Cove

Cabanas are available to rent at Amber Cove. The cost of renting a cabana ranges from $520 for a poolside cabana to $2,000 for the Grand Cabana. There are poolside cabanas and overwater cabanas. The overwater cabanas are located just past the pool area in the Bay of Maimon. The higher-end Cabanas include two water sports rentals for two hours. There is also a waiter available to take food and drink orders.  

Cabanas at Amber Cove
Cabanas at Amber Cove

Things to Do Near Amber Cove Cruise Port

Amber Cove is about 8 miles from Puerto Plata requiring you to take a taxi to the main town or sign up for a tour excursion to visit the surrounding area. If you would like to stay closer to port, there are a few places you can explore near port.

Visit La Playita de Maimon

If you would like to spend some time at a beach near Amber Cove cruise port you are in luck. There a a couple of beaches near Amber Cove. You can walk or take a taxi to La Playita de Maimon. The walk to La Playita de Maimon is about 20 minutes from Amber Cove. La Playita de Maimon is visible from the cruise ship. It is the small beach located to the left of the cruise ship terminal. You will need to leave the port area to reach the beach as there is no direct access to the beach from Amber Cove. La Playita de Maimon is a small, secluded beach and perfect if you are looking for a quiet, serene beach experience. There are stores and restaurants near the beach where you can grab a bite to eat.

La Playita de Maimon in Puerto Plata
La Playita de Maimon in Puerto Plata

Visit La Playa de Maimon

If you would like to visit a larger beach near Amber Cove, then you can take a taxi to La Playa de Maimon. La Playa de Maimon is a beach located near the Mirador Senator. It is a longer beach next to the Senator Resort. Due to its location, you will find more tourists in the area. 

Playa de Maimon in Puerto Plata
Playa de Maimon in Puerto Plata

Enjoy the view at the Mirador Senator

Mirador Senator is a lookout located past the Senator Hotel right next to La Playa de Maimon. The Mirador is visible from the cruise ship. To reach the Mirador, follow the path that begins on the left side of the beach area. You will come to stairs that will take you up the hill to a gravel path that leads to the Mirador. Alternatively, there is another path that starts near the hotel grounds near La Playita de Maimon, which leads to the Mirador. The Mirador Senator offers a great view and is a great place to take photographs of the surrounding area.   

Coastal view of the Mirador Senator and Playa Maimon in Puerto Plata
Coastal view of the Mirador Senator and Playa Maimon

Visit Puerto Plata

You can Immerse yourself in the rich local culture and heritage of the Dominican Republic by visiting Puerto Plata. Puerto Plata is 8 miles from Amber Cove. You can take a taxi to town from the port. In Puerto Plata, you can explore charming streets such as Pink Street and the popular Umbrella Street. You can take in some of the colorful colonial architecture and bustling markets. Puerto Plata is also a great place to enjoy local delicacies, such as fresh seafood, tropical fruits, and traditional Dominican dishes, for a taste of authentic island flavor.

Is Amber Cove Safe?

Absolutely! Amber Cove is a complete port destination developed by Carnival for its cruise clients. You need to show your cruise ship ID to enter Amber Cove. There is security that monitors the entrance to Amber Cove, and most importantly, the Dominican Republic is a safe country to travel to.  

Amber Cove Wrap-Up

A visit to Amber Cove can be an unforgettable experience filled with adventure, relaxation, and cultural discovery. You can spend all day at Amber Cove enjoying a day of relaxation. If you decide to go on a shore excursion, Amber Cove will be waiting for you to return. You can unwind after a day of exploring everything the Dominican Republic has to offer. Whether you’re seeking thrills, cultural immersion, or simply a day of relaxation, this idyllic port destination has something for everyone to enjoy. So, when your next Carnival cruise calls at Amber Cove, be sure to seize the opportunity to explore everything this tropical oasis has to offer. Your Caribbean adventure awaits!

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