The name of the Dominican Republic is based on the name of its capital, Santo Domingo. The official name of the country is República Dominicana.
The Dominican Republic is an island nation located between the Atlantic and the Caribbean and borders on Haiti. The capital is Santo Domingo.
The time difference between Germany and the Dominican Republic is -6 hours in summer and -5 hours in winter.
The Dominican Republic can be divided into four regions:
The Cordillera Central is located in the center of the island and at the same time marks the point at which the highest peaks in the Caribbean can be found. Here you will find, for example, the Pico Duarte and the Loma Alto de la Bandera. In the north of the island is the Cordillera Septentrional, whose highest peak reaches over 1,200 m. The Cordillera Oriental is located in the southern island region, while the Sierra de Baoruco is located in the southwestern part of the island.
Flora and fauna
Due to the year-round high temperatures and rainfall, the island enjoys lush tropical vegetation and the most diverse flora in the Caribbean with over 5,000 flowering species. More than 30% of the land area in the Dominican Republic is under nature protection.
Due to its island location, the biodiversity of the animal world is, however, more limited; Mammals are seldom encountered, whereas birds and insects can be admired in great variety, as well as over 70 species of fish and a fantastic world of corals.
Before the territory of the Dominican Republic was conquered by Haiti in 1805, it was part of the Spanish crown colony of Santo Domingo. This won independence only in 1844. In order to protect itself from Haiti, the young republic briefly submitted to the Spanish crown, but in 1865 regained statehood and ruled in an unstable democracy. This was exploited by the dictator Ulises Heureaux, whose assassination in 1899 led to chaotic conditions that had to be ended by military intervention by the USA. After many politically unstructured years, which were mainly characterized by election manipulation and coups, Leonel Fernández won in May 2008 the presidential election again.
The island’s landscape enables the Dominican Republic to mine various agricultural products, including sugar, coffee, cocoa, vegetables, rice, bananas, tobacco and coconut. The Dominican Peso is the national currency .
The majority of the Dominican Republic’s population consists of the descendants of European immigrants, mostly of Spanish origin or African slaves. With 67% of the total of approx. 9.5 million residents, the greater part of the population lives in cities. Visit shoe-wiki for Emigrate to Dominican Republic.
Over 80% of the population belong to the Roman Catholic Church. There is freedom of religion.
The national language is Spanish. Since many people of Haitian descent also live in the Dominican Republic, they also speak Haitian Creole or French.
Food and drink
There is a large number of exotic fruits and fish to choose from . The national dish is the Bandera dominicana, which consists of braised meat, black beans and rice.
To enter the Dominican Republic, travelers need a passport that is valid for at least the duration of their stay. A 30-day tourist card is usually already included in the flight ticket. No visa is required for stays of less than 30 days.
Current information on vaccinations can be obtained from your family doctor or on the website of the Center for Travel Medicine (CRM).
Frequently asked questions about Dominican Republic
What are the entry requirements for the Dominican Republic?
German citizens do not need a visa to enter the country and stay for up to 90 days. Upon entry, a tourist card must be purchased for US $ 10, which is valid for 30 days. The passport must be valid for at least 3 months upon entry.
What vaccinations do you need to travel to the Dominican Republic?
No compulsory vaccinations are required for the Dominican Republic. We recommend hepatitis A travel vaccinations, and hepatitis B, typhoid and rabies for long-term stays. We definitely recommend taking out health insurance abroad with repatriation.
Cities and places in Dominican Republic
The capital of the Dominican Republic, Santo Domingo, attracts with its big city flair and offers everything you can expect from a metropolis. The city is located on the south coast of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola and has the most important port in the republic. In 1990, UNESCO declared the historic old town (Ciudad Colonial in Spanish) a World Heritage Site. The Catedral de Santa Maria la Menor, which is considered the first cathedral in America, or the Faro de Colón, the new burial place of Christof Columbus, are interesting sights. The Alcázar de Colón, the palace of the viceroy at the time, is also worth a visit.
Many wealthy Dominicans have settled in Jaracaboa as the cooler climate is considered exotic. Surrounded by pine forests, rivers, mountains and valleys, the city and its surroundings are also called the Switzerland of the Dominican Republic due to the landscape. Close to the city are the Saltos de Jimenoa and Saltos de Baiguate waterfalls and the Río Yaque del Norte and Río Jimenoa. A visit to a nearby coffee factory and varied bike tours through the coffee and banana plantations along river valleys are also very popular.
The tourist destination is located on the scenic Samaná peninsula in the northeast of the Dominican Republic. The former fishing village has risen to become an international travel destination with hotels, restaurants and nightclubs for the last 20 years. The most important tourist attraction of Las Terrenas is the “Pueblo de los Pescadores”. The promenade was completely rebuilt after being destroyed by fire in 2012. In Las Terrenas you can relax on the beach. For a more active stay, you can take a boat tour to the Los Haïtises National Park, one of the most important national parks in the republic, with a visit to a cave and a short hike, or you can ride a horse to the “El Limón” waterfall.
Altos de Chavón
The small village of Altos de Chavón is located in the east of the Dominican Republic. It is built in the Tuscan style of the Middle Ages and therefore invites you to stroll through its narrow streets, have a coffee and enjoy the Dominican life. In addition to the many restaurants, galleries and shops, there is also a well-known design school where you can study art, graphics, fashion and interior design. Numerous cultural events such as concerts and festivals take place in the Greek-looking amphitheater.
The dream island of Cayo Levantado is about 15 minutes by boat from the city of Santa Barbara de Samara. The island can also be easily reached from Simi Baez. The island is also nicknamed Bacardi Island, as a well-known commercial for Bacardi is said to have been made here. In fact, Cayo Levantado offers dreamy white sandy beaches and heavenly turquoise-blue water. Like almost all Cayos in Samara Bay, the island is under nature protection.
Bayahibe is a small, idyllic fishing village that is located in the south-east of the country directly on the Caribbean Sea. It is the starting point for boat tours along the coast to the offshore island of Saona with its beautiful beaches. In the crystal clear sea of the Caribbean, divers will find spectacular coral formations and three shipwrecks: the Atlantic Princess, St. George and Coco. In Saona National Park, nature lovers can find lagoons and abundant wildlife, including a wide variety of birds. The area offers an abundance of activities, but a relaxing day in the gentle trade winds on soft, white sandy beaches is also very inviting.