A Dominican Retrospective: Part 9 of 10

CRISTÓBAL COLÓN
It’s quite fitting that today I recollect on Santo Domingo, the first city of the New World, founded by none other than Christopher Columbus – the man who I was named after. Yes that’s right my mother named me after Christopher Columbus… don’t ask. Better yet that today is not only Christopher Columbus Day but also my Birthday. Double – Whammy! 

I would have to say that Santo Domingo was the most rewarding in terms of Dominican Culture and urban life. The central colonial zone is seemingly untouched from its origins, full of gorgeous buildings, statues, and of course the Columbus Palace. I spent five days touring the city and though I did hit every major tourist attraction I also got a chance to see what was on offer for the regular Dominicans. This capital city has a old world charm to it but still offers the luxuries of a cosmopolitan city. There was theatre, film, museums, art galleries, libraries, universities, endless restaurants, cafes, bars, clubs and a functioning transportation network that consists of light rail and buses. Needless to say I was not expecting Santo Domingo to offer so much, considering the other towns I visited were no where near as developed, but I was pleasantly surprised. 

One thing that I thoroughly enjoyed, and found very little of elsewhere on the island, was the abundance of Taino art. The Taino’s were the islands original inhabitants when Columbus landed. They inhabited several islands in the Caribbean and I believe they originated in Venezuela – though I can’t remember where I heard that from. They were completely wiped out after the introduction of Spanish diseases. Only Taino-Spanish mixed descendants (called Mulattos) exist to this day. 

During my stay there I became friendly with some locals and got to see how well educated they were in terms of global politics, the arts, and the media. I felt like I could actually fit in and if I were ever to spend an extended period of time in DR, I would definitely choose to live in Santo Domingo.
A Dominican Retrospective: Part 9 of 10 A Dominican Retrospective: Part 9 of 10 Reviewed by Unknown on 05:30 Rating: 5

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