Many people learn about Saona island during their beach vacation in La Romana or Punta Cana. After visiting Saona Island on a day trip, many visitors come back home and want to know more about this tropical paradise. That’s why we have put together a few interesting facts about Saona, the largest island of the Dominican Republic.
Facts About Saona Island you might not know
1. The Italian explorer, navigator, and colonizer Christopher Columbus discovered the island. In 1494 Columbus named the island after a friend who later became the first governor. It is known as one of the most popular places to visit in the Caribbean.
2. The beach, Canto de la Playa, is a favorite beach of Hollywood to film scenes in movies
Pirates of the Caribbean and The Blue Lagoon both had scenes filmed here. The “natural pool” houses hundreds of starfish where tourists can gently interact with the creatures.
3. The island is part of a government-protected reserve. It is part of East National Park in the south of the Dominican Republic. It is one of the most important reserves in the country.
4. Interesting and endangered species like the rhinoceros iguana, the gentle manatee, elegant dolphins, and the fishing bat all live on or in the ocean near the island.
5. Many parts of the sea around the island is only a few feet deep. Many sandbars form natural pools which are the ideal conditions for a large starfish population.
6. The indigenous Taino people were the first to occupy the island. The island was originally called Adamanay before it was overtaken by the Spaniards. There is a current push to return to the original name.