I am so excited to share with you these 50 interesting facts about the Dominican Republic. If you have never been to the Dominican Republic, this is an excellent way for you to explore its wonders and beauty! All of these facts are also great conversation starters or things you can discuss with a friend if they have never been here.
This gorgeous country has incredible beaches, but fewer people know about its verdant rain forests, soaring mountains, towering waterfalls, deserts, interesting colonial history, and old towns full of cobbled streets and beautiful architecture.
The Dominican Republic is one of the most exciting and culturally interesting countries in the Caribbean. If you are interested in buying Dominican Republic real estate or just visiting for a holiday, these are some great facts you should know.
1. Tourism is the Dominican Republic’s largest industry
The Dominican Republic is the Caribbean’s most popular destination, with over 6.1 million visitors each year, accounting for 21% of the overall Caribbean tourism market.
2. Size Matters
The Dominican Republic is the second-largest country in the Caribbean, covering an area of 18,704 square miles, and it has a population of 10.65 million.
The Dominican Republic shares a single landmass with its neighboring nation of Haiti. It occupies the eastern five-eighths of the island, whereas Haiti covers just three-eighths. Hispaniola was the original name for the entire island.
3. One Island, Two Countries
There are just two islands in the Caribbean that belong to two nations. The Dominican Republic and Haiti are one, while Saint Martin is divided between the Dutch and French.
4. The ‘Beep’ language
The ‘Beep language’ is real, and one of the most fascinating facts I discovered about the Dominican Republic was that it exists! Dominicans utilize their car horn regularly, and it’s a little shocking to tourists. In fact, it seems like they use them more than their brakes!
One short beep tells other drivers, I’m here, or please hurry! Two quick beeps indicate I’m coming past. Two long beeps mean, for goodness sakes, GET OUT OF MY WAY! The most crucial thing if you’re a tourist is not to become upset and keep in mind it’s just normal behavior for Dominican drivers.
5. The Flag
The flag of the Dominican Republic, also known as “la República Dominicana,” is made up of four rectangles (two red & two blue) divided by a white cross.
It’s the only flag in the world with a depiction of the Holy Bible on it.
Juan Pablo Duarte, the founding father of the Dominican Republic, designed the country’s flag in 1844. He is a national hero for his role in the Dominican Republic’s separation from Haiti.
6. Dominican Drinks
Mama Juana, or Mamajuana, is a popular drink among Dominicans. It’s made by combining rum, red wine, honey, and spices. It tastes a little like port wine.
It is rumored to have medicinal value and be an aphrodisiac. Dominicans also claim it can help with flu, digestion, and even your kidneys and liver.
That does not convince me, but it is a tasty drink.
The island, which was discovered by Christopher Columbus while working for the Spanish Crown in 1492, was named La Isla Espanola before being renamed in Latin as Hispaniola. It later became known as the Dominican Republic after General Santo Domingo in 1821.
8. The Spanish
The Spanish ruled the Dominican Republic for almost 300 years, and it gained its independence in 1821.
The Dominican Republic has more than 26 golf courses, which explains why it is so popular with tourists.
The only other Caribbean nation with more golf courses is Puerto Rico, which has 30 in total.
The most popular golf courses include Cap Cana, Punta Cana, and Casa de Campo resort and villas.
10. Famous Golf
The Robert Trent Jones-designed course on Playa Grande Beach is the most well-known of all the golf courses. It’s the only golf course in the western hemisphere with ten holes positioned directly on the ocean.
The capital of which country is Santo Domingo? You now know the answer! However, there is an intriguing fact about the Dominican Republic that Santo Domingo was the first permanent settlement of Europeans.
The Dominican Republic boasts the Caribbean’s largest economy.
13. Size Still Matters
The Dominican Republic boasts the Caribbean’s tallest mountain, Pico Duarte, which rises to 3.098 meters and is 10,164 feet high. It is also home to the Caribbean’s biggest lake, Lake Enriquillo, with a surface area of 375 sq. km, a depth maximum of 52 meters, and a surface elevation of -27 meters.
14. Colonial Zone
The Dominican Republic is home to the first monastery, cathedral, and fortress constructed in the Americans may pique your interest.
These architectural landmarks are significant since the Santo Domingo Colonial City Zone has been selected as one of the World Heritage sites known as “Cuidad Colonial.”
The city’s oldest European settlement is located in the middle of the area. It’s a fascinating, lovely, and well-protected site with a stone wall encircling it.
The Dominican Republic’s love of baseball is an intriguing fact.
It was originally brought to the nation in the 1880s, and since then, it has become a national obsession.
Many of the world’s most renowned players, such as Pedro Martinez, Sammy Sosa, and David Ortiz, were all Dominican.
The official religion of the Dominican Republic is Catholic, with 48 percent of the population adhering to it. Protestants make up 21% of the population, and Atheists or Agnostics account for 28%.
The Dominican Republic has a varied ethnic makeup, with 72% of the population having mixed ancestry or multiracial origins. They are referred to as Mulatto or Mestizo locally.
The second-largest ethnic group is European ancestry, and they are referred to as White Dominicans. They account for 16% of the population.
The next is 11% of the population made up of individuals of African ancestry, known as Black Dominicans. Last but not least, 1% is made up of Jews and Arabs, who make up the remaining portion.
Due to the many different ethnic groups in the Dominican Republic, its cuisine is fantastic. The nation’s cuisine is a cornucopia of Spanish, African, and Middle Eastern cuisines.
There are many international influences, such as Lebanon, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and Latin America. One of the most well-known dishes is Quipe, which comes from Kibbeh in Lebanon.
The Dominican Republic is home to some of the Caribbean’s finest beaches. There are almost 800 miles of coast and over 200 beaches, to be precise.
It is impossible to choose the most beautiful beach on the island, but some of the most popular include:
- Juanillo Beach in Cap Cana
- Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana
- Minitas Beach in Casa de Campo
- Playa Rincon on the Samana Peninsula
- Playa Dorada in Puerto Plata
- Cabarete’s Kite Beach
The Dominican Republic is one of the most readily accessible Caribbean nations from the United States, with more direct flights than any other island.
There are frequent direct flights from over 26 countries, 64 cities, and 90 airports to Punta Cana Airport, which is the closest airport to the deluxe resorts of Cap Cana, Casa de Campo, and Punta Cana.
The Dominican Republic’s official currency is the Dominican Peso (DOP). However, US dollars are widely accepted. One US dollar is equal to 50 Dominican pesos.
The Dominican Republic boasts near-ideal weather, with over 300 days of sunshine each year. In fact, the weather is frequently referred to as the endless summer.
The last significant hurricane to hit the country was George in 1998, which struck 20 years ago. The yearly average temperature is 25 degrees Celsius or 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
The Dominican Republic is known for producing some of the world’s finest cigars, but it’s also a major producer of fine cigars. Their most renowned brands are Opus X by Fuente, Ashton VSG, and Arturo Fuente Hemingway.
The oldest cigar plant is named Aurora, where you’ll want to go if you’re a cigar enthusiast. You may try their handcrafted cigars and watch skilled artisans at work.
The Dominican Republic is one of the finest locations to view North Atlantic Humpback Whales who migrate from mid-January through mid-March. If you enjoy the prospect of viewing these magnificent, elegant creatures, visit Península de Samaná.
For individuals who associate the Dominican Republic with a beach getaway, one of the most surprising facts is how much historical architecture there is. The Catedral Primada de América and Forte Ozama are two important cultural attractions.
The official language of the Dominican Republic is Spanish. Spanish has many dialects, but the most popular one derives from Andalucia, with Arawak words added. Spanish is spoken and used by 90% of the population.
The next popular language is Haitian Creole, which 160,000 people speak. Samana English or Samana Creole is a form of English spoken by 12,000 individuals. Samana English is a kind of American English derived from black immigrants from the United States.
There are a lot of notable people from the Dominican Republic. In fact, there are far too many to list, but Amelia Vega, an actress, singer and model, and Manny Ramirez, one of the best baseball players ever, are among the most well-known Dominicans.
The Dominican Republic also gets the attention of many famous celebrities.
Bill and Hillary Clinton once famously stayed in Punta Cana at Oscar De La Rentas house. There have been plenty of other celebrity sightings like Denzel Washington, Beyoncé, Jaz Z, Tom Cruise, David Ortiz, The Kardashians, and Rhianna.
The Dominican People are focused on family and have strong family values.
The Dominicans believe in the significance of extended family, and the oldest man in the house has the most power. The Dominican people are highly loyal.
If you are all about punctuality, it might be worth noting that Dominicans have their own time! The people of the Dominican Republic are notorious for being late. So expect to wait a while if you arrive on time.
The Dominican Republic is a major rum-producing nation. Many of their rums are well-known across the world. The most renowned rums are made up of the three Bs, Barcelo, Brugal, and Bermudez.
Siboney Reserva and Vizcaya, two other highly regarded rums, are made from natural distilling and aging processes that make them considerably smoother than some of the nation’s neighbors.
32. More Economy
Agriculture and tourism are highly significant to the country’s economy. The most important agricultural products include sugar, rice, bananas, coffee, oranges, cocoa, lemons, tobacco, and coconuts.
Merengue is a Dominican Republic dance and music that has largely spread throughout Latin America and the rest of the world. It’s extremely lively and entertaining dance music.
The dance is a synthesis of a European Waltz, African rhythms, and a Polish Mazurka mixed with French Country Dance. Merengue has now been dubbed the national dance of the Dominican Republic.
If you’re in the mood for romance, be cautious; public kissing is prohibited!!
35. Dominicans Living Abroad
There are about 1.9 million Dominicans in the United States, many of whom send money back to their relatives. They are the country’s fifth-largest Latino group.
36. More Tourism
The Dominican Republic is the second most visited country out of the US. Over 2.7 million Americans visit the island’s beautiful beaches, luxury resorts, golf courses, history and culture every year.
37. Legal age for…
In the Dominican Republic, the legal drinking age is 18. You can vote at the age of 18. However, members of the military and police are not permitted to do so.
The Dominican Republic has a rich variety of native wildlife. There is a nocturnal burrowing mammal known as the Hispaniolan Solenodon, a tiny Gecko that is the world’s smallest lizard, and a Rhinoceros Iguana.
39. National Anthem
The national anthem of the Dominican Republic was composed by José Rufino Reyes y Siancas (1835–1905), and its lyrics were authored by Emilio Prud’Homme (1856–1932).
40. National Bird
The national bird of the Dominican Republic is the palmchat, which may be seen throughout the country. This national icon is about 20cm long and has an olive green color.
The Caribbean Sea bounds the Dominican Republic to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the north.
The national tree of the Dominican Republic is the Mahogany, and the national flower is the Mahogany Flower. Mahogany is one of the most valuable woods in terms of commercial value. It’s long-lasting and great for building furniture, musical instruments, and boats.
The Dominican Republic has nearly 1290 kilometers (800 miles) of coastline.
Presidente is the most popular beer in the Dominican Republic. The same company produces Bohemia beer, which is also quite popular. Both beers are incredibly low compared to US costs!
The Reserva Antropológica Cuevas del Pomier is one of the world’s most stunning archaeological digs.
There are 57 limestone caverns with over 600 prehistoric drawings and carvings, making it one of the Caribbean’s most remarkable sites. The paintings here are believed to be up to 2000 years old.
The Dominican Republic’s countryside is breathtaking. The government, thankfully, decided to safeguard 25% of the country’s unspoiled terrain and coastal waters.
47. National Parks
The Parque Nacional del Este is one of the most beautiful national parks in the world. It’s located in the southeastern La Romana region and is one of its most popular tourist attractions. The park was established in 1975 and has a total area of 31,000 hectares.
The Damajagua Cascades is one of the most beautiful natural wonders in the Dominican Republic. It’s located in Puerto Plata, one of the most exciting and invigorating experiences on earth.
There are a total of 27 waterfalls that you can canyon through, each with its own beautiful crystal-clear pool where you can appreciate the splendor.
On top of the Montaña Redonda, you may enjoy the best perspective in the Dominican Republic. They claim that on a clear day, you can see all the way to Haiti from there. There is no better place on the island to capture photographs because you will get 360-degree sea and mountain panoramas.
50. Altos De Chavon
Last but not least is the Altos de Chavón, a human-made marvel. It’s located in La Romana, near the Chavón River, which borders the beautiful Casa de Campo Resort and many of the luxury villas.
The Altos de Chavón has a lot of wonderful restaurants, cobbled streets, a cultural center, an archaeological museum, and an Amphitheater. There is also a stunning art gallery that includes renowned local artists as well as international artists.