Bayahibe,Dominican Republic

Playa Dominicus, Oasis Canoa hotel in Bayahibe, Dominican Republic

How’s this for a beach! Powder white sand that squeaks under your feet, palm trees swaying in the breeze, clear turquoise waters as warm as the bath tub and bright blue skies…sometimes you think it’s only possible in Photoshopped holiday brochures.  But Bayahibe in the Dominican Republic offers just that…the closest I’ve ever come to a true paradise beach. This photo was taken on Playa Dominicus beach in Bayahibe where I was staying at the Coral Canoa Resort, which I believe has gone through a couple of name changes including the Oasis Canoa and Be Live Canoa.

The Dominican Republic is known for its all-inclusive resorts, and this was the first time I had ever stayed at one. It was Christmas time and was actually the best Christmas I ever had- not only did the hotel put on a huge Christmas eve banquet and a beach party, but Santa arrived in a speedboat with presents for the kids on Christmas Day.

The waters around Bayahibe were some of the bluest, clearest waters I have ever seen and the snorkelling was incredible. There were starfish on the sand if you swam a few metres out, and there was a man-made coral reef not far from the shore so it is definitely worth taking your underwater camera and having a snorkel. Because the coral reef is artificial you can stand on it and get a good look at the brightly coloured fish.

Bayahibe was also a convenient location to take a catamaran to Saona Island. From Bayahibe we set sail on a catamaran listening to the sounds of Bob Marley and enjoying the reggae beats, before stopping for an hour to snorkel in crystal clear waters with their free snorkel equipment. The staff on the boat were lively and had us all dancing to the meringue and drinking cocktails so everyone was having fun and getting a bit tipsy. We then spent several hours on Saona Island, where the beach was even more powder white than Bayahibe and the waters even clearer- if Bayahibe was a paradise beach, Saona was a super paradise beach. We enjoyed a beach BBQ, soaked up the sun and played a few drinking games before jetting back to Bayahibe in a speed boat and stopping off at a lagoon to see the starfish. I’ll never forget one older lady saying as she drunkenly stepped off the speed boat, “Look at me I’m in a bikini! I wouldn’t usually take my clothes off in a changing room in Tesco, yet alone go out in public wearing a bikini!”

For me that was the ultimate Caribbean experience.

Bob Marley+boat+sun+sea+Pina Coladas= heaven.

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