Tourist pearls of the Dominican Republic
The colonial city of Santo Domingo is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of its cultural and historical significance.
Colonial Santo Domingo will charm anyone. Small cobbled streets with the smells of Creole cuisine and Caribbean coffee. Ancient churches, monasteries and palaces, built in the era of Spanish sailors, in which even today you can shoot the next series of “Pirates of the Caribbean.”
Santo Domingo was founded during the time of Columbus and became the first European city in the New World. It was here that at the beginning of the 16th century the first cathedral, the first monastery, the first hospital and the first university of America were built.
Thanks to the son of the discoverer of America, Diego Columbus, the first street appeared in the city. According to legend, Diego’s wife was a rare beauty, loved to dress luxuriously and wrote out dresses from Paris. But she had nowhere to “walk” the French new clothes, which, in fact, she told her husband, who was the governor of Santo Domingo. So in the city appeared a cobbled street, which was called “Dam street”. Tourists can even walk along it today, imagining how lavishly dressed-up ladies walked slowly from one church to another under the scorching tropical sun on a stone bridge in the 16th century.
Santo Domingo. Dam street
Alcazar de Colon also belongs to the Columbus legacy. The palace, which Diego built the same, consists of 22 rooms and contains many original items. Of the historical sites, the Osama fortress with the inner tower of Torre del Omenache, which was once a prison, has been preserved. Excursions are also available there now, so if you wish, you can look into this tower.
Santo Domingo. Alcazar de Colon
It is worth visiting the ruins of the monastery of St. Francis (Ruinas de San Francisco). The first monastery of the New World today serves as a gathering place for city residents and tourists. Every Sunday, people gather in the square near the monastery to listen to the performances of national groups and dance to fiery Dominican rhythms.
Santo Domingo. The ruins of the monastery of St. Francis
In 1990, the Colonial city of Santo Domingo was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of its cultural and historical significance.
The Lighthouse of Columbus (Faro a Colón) shines spotlights up into the sky, giving off a powerful pillar of light visible even from Puerto Rico, which is more than 400 km
Let the name about the lighthouse do not bother you: you will not see the usual high tower with a lantern on a rock. The Columbus Lighthouse is a large museum complex, inside of which there is a mausoleum where the great navigator Christopher Columbus rests. Dominicans firmly believe that the remains of Columbus, who according to the official version died in 1506 in the Spanish Valladolid, are located on their land. To defend the “right to Columbus”, to the 500th anniversary of the discovery of America in 1992, a mausoleum was erected.
The Lighthouse of Columbus (Faro a Colón) contains a huge number of artifacts and documents that tell about the first years of Spanish influence on the continent and about the life of the great sailor.
The height of the structure is 33, the width is 44, and the length is 310 m. And yet the building is appropriately named a lighthouse: 157 searchlights are installed on its roof, which shine up into the sky. A powerful pillar of light is visible for many tens of kilometers. They say it can be seen even from Puerto Rico, and this is more than 400 km.
The church “coal ear”, reminiscent of the Latin cross and considered the patroness of the whole republic and the main center of pilgrimage in all of Latin America, the Basilica of the Virgin of Altagracia
If you read the guides, then when you see this tall building in the city of Higuey, La Altagracia province, you will immediately understand what it was built for. Ordinary architecture does not betray in this futuristic object, which the locals call the “coal ear”, one of the main pilgrimage centers in all of Latin America.
The “Coal Eye” of the Basilica of the Virgin of Altagracia
This is the basilica of the Virgin of Altagracia, which is considered the patroness of the whole republic. From above, the shape of the church resembles a Latin cross, and the doors are made of bronze with a gold coating. Arches are also interesting – they repeat the silhouette of the vestments of the Mother of God.
Basilica of the Virgin of Altagracia
The church is modern: it was built in 1971 by French architects. It is worth admiring their creation both outside and inside. Free admission.
The city of artists Altos de Chavon has become a real mecca for artists, musicians and other representatives of creative bohemia
One of the top places to visit in the Dominican Republic. Panoramic views, beautiful natural landscapes and Mediterranean architecture in the city of artists Altos de Chavon. The name of the town is translated as Altos de – above, Chavon – the name of the river located below the city, that is, “On the high bank of the Chavon River.”
Altos de Chavon owes his creation to love. According to one version, the love of a local rich man for his daughter, who really wanted to leave for Europe.