Amber Cove (Photo:Cruise Criitc)
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating

By Brittany Chrusciel
Cruise Critic Editor

Shore Excursions

Amber Cove features shore excursions that cover an array of landmarks, activities and experience.

Port of Amber Cove

Amber Cove is an $85 million port in the Dominican Republic developed for cruise passengers by Carnival Corporation. Originally developed with the intention to use the port for volunteering opportunities on the now-defunct Carnival brand fathom, cruisers from various Carnival Corp. cruise lines can still join fathom shore excursions like a tour of a women's cooperative making chocolate, or a recycled paper and crafts entrepreneurship.

When Amber Cove opened in 2015, it was the first time since the 1980s that a cruise ship stopped at what is known as the Amber Coast, so called for its abundance of the translucent, burnt-orange stone. Located along the Bay of Maimon on the northern coast of the Dominican Republic -- not far from Puerto Plata, which was used as a filming location for the first Jurassic Park film -- the port is equipped with two berths and designed to accommodate 10,000 passengers from most of Carnival Corp.'s brands, including Carnival, Holland America, Costa, Cunard and P&O, among others.

About Amber Cove


Pro

Amber Cove's resort-style pool features a swim-up bar, water slide and plenty of lounge chairs

Con

There's no beach onsite; the nearest one is roughly 15 minutes away and requires a taxi

Bottom Line

Thanks to its exclusivity as a private port, Amber Cove hardly feels overcrowded


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Port Facilities

Visitors can walk the long dock or take a complimentary covered pedicab (tips appreciated) in order to pass through the fort-like structure that leads to Amber Cove's duty-free shops and tour buses. Note that some tours meet as soon as you pass through the entrance and into this area. The cobblestoned space with candy-colored buildings offers a range of shops from Diamonds International and stores for watches and leather goods to a pharmacy and a shop that offers all items for $20 or less. You'll also find a cafe and a bar (these offer Wi-Fi and restrooms). In the center is a round building offering stamps and information about the Dominican Republic. For those taking a stroll, you'll notice a few eye-catching sculptures around a fountain, and a wall of information about the area's history, including its various uses as a filming location.

To the far left, if you walk beyond the stores and past the bar, you'll uncover a great photo opportunity of the words "Amber Cove!" in large lettering, typically in front of where your ship is docked. Surrounding this quiet outcrop are a handful of stalls manned by local vendors selling their wares.

If you continue straight through the cobblestoned path, to the right of the central building, you will see a huge archway that leads to tour buses and shore excursion departures on the right, and a taxi line on the left. Prices for one to five people start at $20 one way to Ocean World; $35 to Puerto Plata and $50 to Damajagua, known as the waterfalls. Also to the left, right before you pass under the archway, are a few administrative offices, a desk for National/Alamo car rentals and an ATM.

For cruisers staying close by, Amber Cove offers a resort-style swimming pool, including a swim-up bar, and a lazy river. An open and a closed water slide at the Aqua Zone are fantastic for kids (and adults). This entire area, including the lounge chairs, are free of charge. Further on, visitors will find a separate playground/splash pad for small children, a basketball court and jumbo chess. Restrooms are located all around the area.


Amber Cove Awards

Cruisers’ Choice Destination Awards

2018 Top-Rated Cruise Line Private Island Destinations
2017 Top-Rated Cruise Line Private Island Destinations
2016 Top-Rated Cruise Line Private Island Destinations