La Caleta is a national park in the Dominican Republic about 20 kilometers from the capitol city of Santo Domingo. The Park is opposite the Las American International Airport and is the first underwater park in the Dominican Republic.
The dive sites are great for beginner and advanced with shallow coral reefs and deep sloping walls down to 180 meters. What we liked most about La Caleta is the lack of people. There is a small watersports center called El Carey which was able to rent us tanks and weights, make sure to book ahead either directly through El Carey or with a dive center in Santo Domingo.
Our skipper Papi grew up in the area around La Caleta and took us out in a small wooden boat with a 8hp engine. The dive sites were between 10-20 minutes from shore and we choose to dive without a guide.
There are several shipwrecks you can dive in La Caleta but we choose to stay on the reef. We found lots of encrusting Orbicella corals and Colpophyllia (brain corals) and we were blown away with the diversity of hard coral species on the reef. We also found lots of beautiful fleshy Mussa and Scolymia corals and even a few colonies of the rare Dendrogyra cylindricus.
La Caleta is the first of 3 stops we will be making in the Dominican Republic. We loved the diversity and abundance of corals. If you want to dive La Caleta we recommend bringing your own equipment and being prepared to dive as a buddy team.
The sites are easy to navigate and we had over 30m visibly with no current. The boat is rustic but gets the job done and there are no big hotels or dive centers which means the dive sites are still in good shape. If you have the opportunity make sure to check out the La Caleta marine park.