Colonial City is the name given to the historical area in Santo Domingo founded by the Spanish colonist in 1498 y 1502. The 93 ha zone was declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1990, regarding its historical importance. It is situated in the center of the city and on the west bank of the Ozama River.
The center of the colonial city accommodates a square known as Plaza Mayor de Santo Domingo or Parque Colón. It was created in 1506 to be the center of the public live in the city. In 1887, local authorities restored the pavement and erected a statue of Christopher Columbus in its center. The square stills being a cultural venue where shows and activities around the historical presence of Santo Domingo take place.
Parque Colón is surrounded by the oldest buildings in the city, Columbus Alcazar, the Museo de las Casas Reales and Cathedral of Santa María la Menor –the oldest cathedral in the American continent. Besides these buildings, the colonial area comprises three hundred structures; all of them belong to the colonial era and were built on the first years of the 16th century. The most interesting buildings are the Ozama and El Conde fortresses, De la Misericordia and El Conde city gates, Parque Independencia, El Conde, Las Damas and Las Mercedes streets, Tostado, Del Cordón and Jesuítas manors, the Dominican Convent, and the Saint Francis’ Monastery.
If you want to enjoy the historical Santo Domingo and at the same time being hosted in a beach resort, you should think about book in Be Live Hamaca. This hotel complex placed in the Boca Chica area encloses three different resorts Be Live Hamaca Garden perfect for family holydays, Be Live Hamaca Suites for romantic getaways, and Be Live Hamaca Beach for those who loves the sea.
Santo Domingo’s Colonial City is the only recognize world heritage site in the Dominican Republic. Nevertheless, the local government is trying to submit several sites into the list, like Jacaguara –the original site where the city of Santiago de los Caballeros was founded in 1495. The old city was devastated by an earthquake and move to its actual location. La Isabela Archeological Park –the archeological site were the first Spanish settlement was placed in 1494– and some of the manors along the Route of the Ingenios are also waiting to be included in the list by UNESCO.