< Back

Contact us

Our scuba travel experts are available 24/7 to assist you in planning and booking a fantastic scuba diving vacation

Scuba diving in Bayahibe

Bayahibe allows access to Catalina Island, Saona Island and miles of fringing reef. Come here to relax, leave with an abundance of diving memories.
Find a local dive operator
Suggest an edit to this page

Highlights

Cave Diving

Three water-filled cave systems near Santo Domingo, Bayahibe and Playa Dorada are ripe for exploration by tec divers. Several local guides can assist.

Catalina Island

An uninhabited island now protected as a national park, it’s two dive sites are a haven for pelagics and a wealth of colorful, tropical fish species.

Saona Island

Perfect for both snorkelers and scuba divers, Saona Island has several shallow sand bars as well as drift dives. Nurse sharks are commonly spotted.

Wreck of the Saint George

Intentionally scuttled, this 240-foot (73-meter) freighter now lies between 72 and 130 feet (22 and 40 meters) and is perfect for advanced divers.

Diving in Bayahibe

Quick facts

Diving in Bayahibe is generally easy. Most of the reefs just offshore and the protected side of Saona Island have little to no current. The currents are stronger at Shark Point, Catalina Island and the western side of Saona Island, giving a good mix of beginner and advanced level diving. Don’t forget about the freshwater caves. These are easy enough for advanced divers, but tec divers will benefit the most from these structures.

Many dive operators in the area utilize catamarans to make the longer trips to Catalina Island possible. Unfortunately, shore diving is rarely an option in Bayahibe. In addition, most dive operators plan excursions to the offshore islands on a weekly basis. For diving near Bayahibe, the dive sites aren’t decided upon until the day off to make the most of the prevailing weather patterns.

Underwater environments near Bayahibe include mangrove forests, seagrass beds, wrecks, walls with fast-paced drifts, freshwater caves and a vast reef structure featuring cavernous swim-throughs and extensive coral formations.

Keep in mind that insurance is mandatory for anyone who wants to dive in the Dominican Republic.

When to go

Diving in the Bayahibe is fantastic year-round. June to November have uncrowded dive sites whereas December to May has the best all-around conditions.

June to November

Bayahibe enjoys a hot and humid climate year-round, although June to November is considered the rainy season. It usually rains once a day, every day but for only short periods of time.

June to November is also hurricane season. If you are planning a trip to the Caribbean during these months, consider taking out travelers insurance on the off chance a hurricane forms during your vacation. In recent years, the DR has not sustained a direct hit from a hurricane, but several pass nearby annually.

Air temperatures during the summer months range from 77-85°F (25-30°C) while water temperatures are 79-83°F (26-28°C).

Because June to November is considered the rainy season, this is also the low season in Bayahibe. If you choose to dive in these months, you’re sure to get a great deal on flights and accommodation.

If you enjoy getting the best deals or diving at uncrowded dive sites, book your trip from June to November.

December to May

December to May is the dry season in Bayahibe. During these months, you can expect sunny, hot and mildly humid conditions. This is also the best time of year to dive on the south coast as the seas are calmest there at this time.

Air temperatures during the winter months range from 70-80°F (21-26°C) while water temperatures are 75-79°F (24-26°C).

In addition to great topside conditions for the southern coast, December to March is the best time to dive while listening to humpback whales. This is the time of year the island plays host to the humpback whales who migrate from the North Atlantic to the shores of nearby Bavaro. As the males are there to impress their females during this season they are incredibly active and often present a spectacular show of splashing and rearing.

However, December to May also represents high season for tourism in the Caribbean. Therefore, you should book early to get a good deal on accommodation and flights.

If you wish to dive on the southern coast in locations like Bayahibe or see the mating rituals of humpback whales, book your holiday between December and May.

Rain and temperature

Click to expand

Water temperature

Click to expand

Where to dive

Advanced divers should head to Catalina Island, Shark Point or the Wreck of Saint George. Beginners will be most comfortable near the Bayahibe coast.

    Snorkeling in Bayahibe

    Snorkeling near Bayahibe is pleasant due to its mild currents. In particular, topside spotters will enjoy trips to the northeast side of Saona Island and the northern side of Catalina Island where shallow areas combine with corals and tropical fish to create a rainbow of color. The dive sites just offshore of Bayahibe called Dreams Shallow and Magallanes are also easily accessible to snorkelers.
    There are approximately 22 dive sites within reach of Bayahibe. Just offshore of Bayahibe, the wreck of the Saint George is a local favorite. Intentionally scuttled, it’s ripe for exploration today. You’ll also find the exciting sites known as Viva Shallow, Dominicus Reef and Magallanes. Along the Parque Nacional del Este, you’ll find fringing coral reefs full of life at sites like Dos Cocos, La Tortuga and Aquarium Profundo. In addition, Bayahibe allows access to both Catalina Island and Saona Island. Catalina includes two dive sites, namely The Wall and The Aquarium, both of which feature lush coral gardens and abundant fish species. Saona Island boasts El Faro, La Parguera and Shark Point.

    What to see

    From lobsters to graceful eagle rays, you’re sure to see a variety of marine life in Bayahibe’s waters. Commonly spotted are tropical fish species from grazing parrotfish to butterfly and angelfish. In the warm waters near the estuaries, live the manatees which form a special treat for the few divers who spot them. In the deeper water, barracudas are regularly seen and some may witness reef sharks patrolling island walls. Leatherback, green, loggerhead and hawksbill turtles graze among the shallow reefs for both snorkelers and scuba divers to find. Keep a watchful eye on the water during your transit from shore to dive site. Dolphins love to folick in the wake of the dive boats.

    Calendar

    For better readability of the table, pass into the landscape mode.

    Most likely sightingsPossible sightings
    Live chat Call back