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Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic is the city where several of the world's 'firsts' happened. These 'firsts' include cathedral, university, hospital, and monastery. This South Coast city, originally called La Isabela, was discovered in 1496 by the brother of Christopher Columbus, Bartolome Colon. The Spanish also used Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic as a set-off point in conquering the rest of the Caribbean, and the North, Central and South American regions.
The city does not only have the limelight for having those 'firsts'. It also has its share of troubles. An earthquake in 1562 destroyed Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; it was burnt down by Sir Francis Drake in 1586; it was attacked by the British and French in almost all of the 17th century; it as ruled over by Haitians; dictator Trujillo ruled it and changed the city's name after himself, Ciudad Trujillo. Trujillo's death and a military coup brought back peace to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Right now, the Dominican Republic's capital city is now a busy city with over 2.5 million residents.
Zona Colonial in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic is the most visited part of the capital city. This place, which borders the Ozama River, is proud of its cobblestone streets, historical monuments, and amazing Spanish architecture that dates as far back as the 16th century. There are palaces that have been used as museums, and there are several antique structures that now serve as bars, cafés, hotels, and restaurants.
The Los Tres Ojos (The Three Eyes) in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, consists of a group of caves and freshwater lagoons. This place was considered as a tourist attraction since 1970 and was used by the first residents of the island (Tainos) for their religious ceremonies.
Another popular place to visit in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic is the Faro del Colon. This monument is home to the remains of Christopher Columbus since the transfer of his tomb in 1992 from the Cathedral of Saint Maria the Lesser. This 46-meter-tall cross is completely white marble. There are lights illuminating the symbol every night, casting shadows against the sky. You can find museums, archives, and library in the areas inside the museum.
The El Alcazar de Colon is an Italian-renaissance-style palace built in the 1520's.The structure was abandoned in 177, fueling attempts to convert it into a prison. These attempts never succeed. The 1809 and 1835 landslides ruined parts of the structure but it was restored in 1957 to its state current state now.
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic has numerous of sights to see including a wide variety of restaurants that probably even locals never had the chance to visit them all. The capital city is also a great shopping venue with its discount stores offering the best bargains on designer brands.