Monday, December 18, 2017

North Coast jewels - Playa Caleton

Playa caleton - small but beautifulPlaya Caleton is famously located in a small u-shaped bay oriented away from the typical swell direction, which means no waves or currents. This is where the mighty Atlantic Ocean is tamed forming a beautiful natural pool with crystal clear water.  The sandy beach slowly descends into the water making this the ideal playground for the whole family.




Have a refreshing pina coloda while you are waiting for your foodEating, drinking and chilling
Playa Caleton has its fair share of small little open-air restaurants, that serve mouthwatering lobster and tasty fish. They’ll set up a table with chairs for you in the sand under the shade of sea grape trees. While waiting for your food be sure to try the deliciously fresh Piña Colada served in a hollowed out pineapple.

The same people will also be able to rent out sunchairs if you want one. Otherwise, just spread your towel in the sun and soak up some sunrays.

Other activities
More the active type? Bring your snorkel and explore the rocky sides of the bay where many colorful little fish reside at your leisure, or go for a swim to the rock at the mouth of the bay. If you bring water shoes you can even try and climb the very sharp volcanic rock on which someone has placed a figure climbing. A challenge but one that is doable and which will give you a very rewarding view of the area.
The rock at the mouth of the bay of Playa CaletonDozens of white heads dot the right hand shore representing Taino Indians
Apart from the white climbing figure on the main rock at the mouth of the bay, dozens of heads made out of white cement dot the right hand side of the bay. The story goes that a local artist wanted to give a visual presence to the Taino Indians in this way.  

Playa Caleton in all its beautyBest time to go
Dominicans love this beach, not only because of its natural beauty but because the water is so safe. Ironically many people in the Dominican Republic cannot swim and therefore seek out natural pools.

In the weekend busloads of people from the cities are brought here for the day. Expect a lot of people, including families with small children as well as loud music blasting out from different car stereos. It’s a very typical Dominican experience, which a lot of people enjoy. If you prefer peace and quiet with less people, come during the week.

Take the boat from Laguna Gri Gri in Rio San Juan to Playa CaletonPlaya Caleton is located just west of Rio San Juan, about an hour’s drive from Cabarete. On weekends you’ll recognize the entrance by the number of buses parked close by. During the week, just ask people if you can’t find the entrance.

To get there, either rent a car for the day or if you are a bigger group, rent a taxi. An interesting addition to this easy day-excursion would be to stop in the center of Rio San Juan and take the boat from Laguna Gri-Gri to Playa Caleton. They will tell you a bit about the surrounding mangroves as well as the birds and fish that live here. Once on open sea, they will sail you to a bat cave and afterwards show you another crystal clear swimming spot that can only be reached by boat. In the bay of Playa Caleton they’ll drop the anchor and will wait until you want to go back.   
The beauty of the mangrovesThe view when on open sea

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