Which One is Better: Isla Saona or Catalina Island?

There are two amazing places in the Dominican Republic that you must visit before the end of your vacation. They are Saona Island and Catalina Island, located southwest of the island La Española. Both fulfill the prototype of paradisiacal Caribbean islands, with crystal-clear waters and beaches of fine yellow sand that will make you live an unforgettable day.

There are so many places to visit on these islands but one of the main attractions are the beaches In this article, we will look at which is better: Isla Saona or Catalina Island in the Dominican Republic.

Saona Island vs Catalina Island

To define which island is better for your vacation planning its necessary to take a closer look at both. Depending on your lifestyle and the set of preferred activities each island has its pros and cons. Let’s take a look at what we can find in these beautiful Caribbean islands in the Dominican Republic.

Catalina Island

Mainly, tourists who visit Catalina Island do so for two main reasons: snorkeling and scuba diving. Its transparent waters in beaches such as the East, West and North, make diving in its crystal clear waters an adventure.

Women snorkeling in the Caribbean
Women snorkeling in the Caribbean

The element that most contributes to the marine fauna is the coral reef that surrounds the island. Here we can find all kinds of marine life, ranging from lobsters and multicolored fish to large stingrays.
Scuba Diving: An Amazing Activity on the Catalina Island!

The most famous of the island are its diving spots. Diving in Catalina Island is incredible in places like El Muro or El Acuario.

El Muro, also known as the La Pares de Catalina, is a slope that dives to a depth of 100 meters and is home to a wide variety of marine life. The dives at this point are between 20 and 40 meters, only within the reach of the most experienced divers.

A much more affordable dive is that of El Acuario. It is an area of the island that barely reaches 11 meters deep. There, around the coral reef, we can see all kinds of fish of different colors such as lionfish, frogfish or seahorses.

Saona Island

Perhaps the best known of the island is its beautiful natural pool, where you can walk dozens of meters without the water covering more than your hips. It is a place of starfish, a favorite attraction for tourists. And when you find yourself in its crystalline waters, you must remember that you are in one of the most important ecological reserves of the Dominican Republic.

On the shore of the beach, the white sand is perfect for relaxing on it. A few meters from the shore we find palm trees and jungle vegetation, where we can find fauna and flora that will surprise you.

Meet a small Fishermens Village

The scenery is spectacular, but in addition to this, Saona Island has permanent population living on the island, something that is very interesting for tourists. Knowing the way of life of a small Caribbean island is a cultural shock that we can do in the village of Mano Juan.

We also find in the village a turtle sanctuary, where we can see both elderly specimens and hatchlings taking their first steps into the Caribbean Sea.

Small House on Saona Island
Small house on Saona Island

Things They Have in Common

Both islands have different activities and places to visit, but they have something in common. Both offer amazing beaches and crystal clear waters to its vistitors. There is only one way to get to Saona and Catalina: by boat or catamaran.

The best time to visit both islands is from January to April, when rainfall is much lower and temperatures are lower. However, any time of the year is perfect to visit these natural wonders.

So… Which One is Better?

Comparing the two islands is very difficult. Each one offers different options, so it is up to you to decide which experience to choose. If you want to enjoy a day of relaxation in one of the most beautiful landscapes of the Dominican Republic, your choice should be Saona Island. On the other hand, if you want to enjoy a privileged environment where you can also snorkel or scuba diving, you should choose Catalina Island.