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Hotels in Santo Domingo

Vacaciones en Santo Domingo

Holidays in Santo Domingo, the capital of merengue and bachata

A visit to the heart of the New World

The fascinating history of the capital of the Dominican Republic, the origin of the New World, stretches through each of its streets. Surrounded by illustrious buildings that reflect a past of glory and prosperity, the city continues to be a meeting point for cultures and nationalities that enrich a promising present and future with their presence.

Hotels and Resorts in Santo Domingo

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Details of
Santo Domingo

The Colonial City of Santo Domingo was the first European settlement in American lands at the beginning of the conquest of the New World. Its origin dates back to the end of the fifteenth century, and the first outstanding buildings, such as the cathedral or the Alcázar, at the beginning of the sixteenth century. Examples of military, urban and religious architecture of the time have made the centre of the capital a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Places of Interest in Santo Domingo

Catedral de Santo Domingo (Santo Domingo Cathedral)

It is also known as the Catedral Primada de América (First Cathedral of America) or Basílica Menor de Santa María (Minor Basilica of Santa Maria) and was consecrated by Pope Julius II in 1511. However, its construction was delayed for several years, as workers routinely abandoned the works to venture into the search for gold in other newly founded colonies such as Mexico. The project would not be completed until 1540, and it would not be declared the First Cathedral of America until 1546, following an express request from the emperor Carlos V to Pope Paul III. For some time, it housed the remains of Christopher Columbus, until they were moved to the Faro a Colón (Columbus Lighthouse).

Fortaleza de Ozama (Ozama Fortress)

It stands opposite the mouth of the Ozama River, from which it takes its name, and it was the first military construction of the colony in the early sixteenth century. It was built in a medieval style under the order of the governor Nicolas de Ovando, with the aim of protecting the newly founded city from Portuguese, French and English attacks, as well as the numerous pirates who sailed around the area in search of the best loots.

Los Tres Ojos (The Three Eyes)

Some of the most popular caves on the islands were not discovered until the beginning of the twentieth century. Those of Los Tres Ojos, located in the Parque Mirador del Este (Mirador del Este Park), are an example. Four beautiful caves connected to each other, the product of the division of a cave that was formed thousands of years ago. Los Tres Ojos refer to these new caves, each with its own lake, around a single central lake, which is the one which can be seen from the outside. The place, which was probably frequented by the island's Aboriginal peoples, can be visited on a boat tour.

Alcázar de Colón (Columbus Citadel)

King Fernando el Católico (Ferdinand the Catholic) granted Don Diego de León, a viceroy of the Indies, the lands on which this citadel, the first fortified palace in the New World, stands today. This beautiful colonial residence was built with coral rocks, maintaining an eclectic architectural style with renaissance, Gothic and Mudejar touches. The monumental nature of the building is also reflected in the figures: a total of 55 rooms and 72 doors and windows mark out the space of this illustrious building in which conquerors of the stature of Balboa, Cortés or Velázquez gathered.

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