Santo Domingo Travel Guide

The capital of the Dominican Republic enjoys a spectacular setting on the south coast of Hispaniola Island, overlooking the Caribbean Sea at the mouth of the Ozama River. The first seat of Spanish colonial rule in the New World, Santo Domingo is heavy on colonial remnants and it’s easy to feel like you are in a time warp here.

If you’re looking for a quiet holiday, you’ve probably come to the wrong place. But if nightlife in true Caribbean fashion is up your alley, Santo Domingo offers Merengue, salsa and even rock dancing until the early morning in discos and nightclubs. For more excitement, keep some loose change to round off the night in one of the casinos.

Kick off your tour in the Colonial City, the perfect starting point to discover Santo Domingo. Between Independence Park and the Ozama River, you can admire the first city built by European settlers in the New World, helped by Columbus‘ brother, Bartholomeo, and his son, Diego Columbus.


Culture square: is a large park area with lots of museums within easy reach of each other.

Bellapart Museum: is a privately owned museum with one of the finest collections of Dominican contemporary art anywhere. ****

Columbus Lighthouse: is a remarkable structure in the shape of a cross, which was erected to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in the Americas.

Santo Domingo Botanical Gardens: showcases the island’s natural flora with areas dedicated to orchids, palm trees and other exotic plants.

Los Tres Ojos: is a striking 50-foot deep cave featuring three lagoons encircled by stalagmites and verdant vegetation.

National Aquarium: boasts a massive fish tank best observed from the Plexiglas tunnel that leads through it, and is home to Tamaury, a huge manatee.****