Laguna El Dudú
As I mentioned above, Laguna El Dudú is a spot that’s accessible without an adventure tour guide company. The clear water, caves and lush forest make it a beautiful place to spend the afternoon, and it’s reasonably close to Cabarete, less than an hour and a half’s drive.
It makes for a great stopover to break up a longer trip down the coast. If you’re heading to Las Terrenas, Samana, Las Galeras, or basically anywhere to the East, you can stop for a refreshing dip in the Dudú pools before heading on.
The laguna is a gorgeously cool bright-turquoise pool. There’s a zip line you can ride that runs over the canyon, with a compulsory drop into the water. You can pay 25 pesos to have a go, step up if you dare. Not for the fainthearted, the 8- to 9-metre-drop promises quite the adrenaline rush.
As someone very new to jumping into water from a height, the jump was a bit of a shock, but I’m glad I did it! When you let go of the handle, just be sure to fall like a pencil and look straight ahead. Oh, and lifejackets are provided.
There is a smaller pool, half in the shade of a cave, which is a lush place to chill and swim in the crystal-clear water. Very family appropriate. There’s even a little baby jump off the side of a rock that you can enjoy if you’re not into heights. There are some caves to explore, too, so you can look at some impressive rock formations.
With an onsite bar and restaurant, you can easily spend a whole day relaxing by the pools at Laguna El Dudú.