TRAVEL THERE – THE BAY AND POOLS
While the food was mediocre, the entertainment awful, the rooms only serviceable and the internet frustrating, there were good things about Sandpiper Bay. Last week I told you about the morning yoga sessions and there were other things to enjoy.
Once you escaped from your room, the pools and the bay for water sports were lovely. For the most part, our fellow vacationers were families with kids, lots of kids. They’d stake a claim around the pool and stay there most of the day.
The Pools First
There are several pools at this Club Med and if you have a family with kids, lots of kids, then you might be quite happy at Sandpiper Bay. Most of the families seemed to be having a good time.
There was a water park type area next to what was called the Family Pool. We left that pool to the families, but it looked very nice.
The Main Pool was huge and it also had lots of families around it. We spent much of one day hanging out there. I found a cabana under the trees, a little removed from poolside, where I enjoyed reading for a while and Bill hung out in the water. I’m not a big one for swimming, but I did get in the water with Bill and float around a bit. It was later in the day and most of the kids were taking a nap, so it was quite pleasant.
There was one huge disappointment at the Main Pool. During our time in Punta Cana, Bill had really enjoyed the daily water games, so he was really looking forward to the same thing at Sandpiper Bay. If you looked at their schedule of activities, then it appeared as if the same thing was offered and it was offered, but Bill was the only taker.
We can’t really blame Sandpiper Bay for this, because they did offer, but it was a disappointment. Punta Cana just had a much more energetic crowd. Most of the guests were French, which may or may not be the reason. As it drew time for the Water Games, you’d see people coming to the pool from all over the resort. The pool would fill up and the games would begin. Bill, a natural athlete, was in great demand. At Sandpiper Bay, everyone just waited on their lounge chairs for the daily announcement of games to be over and then they’d let the kids go back in the water.
There’s one more pool – the Zen Pool – and it’s adults only. The day we spent at this pool things were really hopping. Perhaps they should have offered the Water Games at this pool instead. They might have had some takers.
The Zen Pool is much smaller than the Main Pool and the edges are lined with cabanas, but there are no trees. It was quiet in the morning when I took the yoga class, but as the day progressed it would fill up. While there is a bar not far from the Main Pool, with both inside and outside service, it is never as busy as the walk-up bar at the Zen Pool.
There is a bay at Sandpiper Bay. It’s got a nice beach and plenty of free water sports. I found it amazing that it wasn’t busier. It was virtually the only thing to DO, if you didn’t want to spend all your time lying by the pool.
We took sailing lessons there and then went out for a sail with the instructor. After that, we could have taken the little catamarans out anytime we wanted to, but I don’t think Bill felt quite comfortable as captain and in truth, I wasn’t much help.
On another day, we took advantage of the two-seater kayak and made our way around the bay a few times. And there-in lies the problem. Whatever water sport you choose to enjoy, you have to enjoy it in the small bay adjacent to the resort. You are not allowed out of sight of the water sport attendants on the Sandpiper’s beach, nor can you land on the other shore at the private beaches of the palatial homes. You begin to feel as if you are sailing around your bathtub.
There is a very nice beach on the bay, but few go there. Perhaps because they only have lounge chairs on the beach. No cabanas and no umbrellas. No bar! The palm trees only offer a tiny bit of shade, so after a few minutes you are broiling.
On the other side of the bay there are more exciting water sports offered for a price, such as jet skis and motor boats. Desperate for entertainment, we walked over there, but the prices were prohibitive. Prohibitive enough that people were staying away in droves. I think the most boring job on the resort must have been the jet ski hut.
The pools are the main attraction at Sandpiper Bay, but we explored the other offerings, such as they were. Come back next week and I’ll give you an idea of what you can do when you’re not in the water.