Santo Domingo is more than just the Colonial Zone. A bustling city with loads of things to see and do. Whether its shopping malls or eating out in the new trendy restaurants and bars you will see a different side to the city.
With a population of around 3 million people in the District Nacional it really is a big city. Below are just a few other things to do around Santo Domingo.
Los Tres Ojos is the name given to a 50ft open air limestone cave surrounded by impressive stalagmites. The 3 caves have crystal clear blue water and offers spectacular views. At night the caves are illuminated by an array of colored lights.
Initially the caves were a sacred place for Taino Indians, one of the first inhabitants of Hispaniola.
The Faro Colon is located on the east side of Santo Domingo, not far from the Colonial zone. The construction of the lighthouse began in 1986 and was built to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the discovery of the New World.
The Faro Colon is claimed to house the remains of Columbus after being moved there from the Cathedral Primada de America – a ceremony that was attended by Pope John Pall II. The monument houses a collection of exhibitions from each country in the Americas.
The National Aquarium is one of the largest in the Caribbean and is located about 10 minutes from the Colonial Zone. Go to see turtles, sharks, lobsters and all kinds of native fish to the waters around Dominican Republic.
The Aquarium has a nice park overlooking the sea where you can relax and enjoy lunch and a few drinks.
Founded in 1976 the park offers a diverse landscape which covers more than 500 acres of land with different types of fauna native to the island.
There is a train ride that lasts around 40 minutes that takes you around the gardens which is a less tiring way to view the scenery. Locals use the park for jogging as it has many trails throughout.
Boca Chica is the closest beach to the city; around a 30 minute drive. It is hustle and bustle with bars and restaurants up and down the beach with market traders offering their souvenirs.
The beach is more like a natural Lagoon staying shallow for a long way out with hardly any waves. It gets very busy at the weekends with the locals. If you want a quiet relaxing beach then go for Juan Dolio (a further 15 minutes down the road.
Juan Dolio is around 45 minutes from the city. A lot quieter than Boca Chica, so if you just want to relax and get out of the city for a day this is the beach for you. The beaches are amazing and make for a great day trip out of the city.