Santo Domingo is the enchanting capital of the Dominican Republic and the oldest Colonial city of the of the New World. It was discovered by Christopher Columbus’ brother and remnants of its earliest inhabitants remain today. The older part of the city features castles, royal buildings, fortresses and more, built back in the early 1500’s. The Alcazar de Colon is one of the oldest and most prominent buildings in the area and was built by Columbus’ son in 1510. Guided walking tours are very popular and the historical value of this part of town is unforgettable. Be sure not to forget your camera. For the best beaches in Dominican Republic check out Guidetocaribbean.net.

In the Gazcue district the historical tour continues with many first class museums. Of those to chose from are the modern, natural history, cultural plaza and the infamous national theater which hosts lively theatrical presentations regularly. This area is also dotted with a variety of dining choices, like cafes, family-style and upscale restaurants. A whole day at least, can be spent here soaking in the history and culture.

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic beach

The Naco area is a shopper’s paradise. Here is where a dent can be made in the wallet for sure. This shopping district has several ultra modern shopping malls, Plaza Naco, Piantini, Plaza Central and Unicentro Plaza. No shortage of souvenirs and treats to buy exist here, so load up.

On the natural side of things, this gorgeous city has extensive mountain ranges that seem to drop into tremendous rivers and you may see a waterfall or two as well. It is also known for its white sandy beaches which are sure to shake any winter blues you may still be harboring. There are various activities available near the beach, parasailing, snorkeling and world class fishing. The Santo Domingo beaches are pristine and impressive to say the least.

If the beach isn’t enough to warm things up, the city also has a hotter side, named El Malecon, which is said to be the largest discotheque in the world. And the natives can teach you a thing or two about their dance called the “Merengue” if need be. In February is the famous Dominican Carnival, a must see event. After dancing and partying many tourists keep the mood going with native cuisine at one of the outdoor cafes lining the street or even tempt their fate at a casino or two. The city also has one of the most unique dance clubs, which is actually located inside a natural cave, hopefully this is where the tourists and locals hang out and not any bats.

Santo Domingo has it all, it has old medieval charm, New World Order all mixed up with some hip Latin spice. Can you say Ay Caramba?