Alcázar de Colón

Alcazar de Colon, Colonial Zone Santo Domingo
The Alcázar de Colón is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Santo Domingo. The building dates from 1510 and is the oldest vice-regal residence in the Americas. It was originally the home of Diego Columbus, the governor of the colony and Christopher Columbus’ son. The palace was the center of the Spanish Court for nearly 60 years. It served as the headquarters for the Spanish conquests of Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Guatemala, Peru, Florida, Colombia and Jamaica.

The beautifully restored building is an exceptional example of Spanish Colonial architecture. Now a museum, it displays a fascinating collection of European Late Medieval and Renaissance art. Highlights include polychrome wood sculptures and tapestries. Although many of the furniture items are reproductions, they give visitors an idea of what life was like in Colonial Santo Domingo.

Plaza de España
Telephone: 809-682-4750
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9 am – 5 pm

Museo de las Casas Reales (Museum of the Royal Houses)

Casas Reales, Santo Domingo Museums
Built in the early 1500s, the Museo de las Casas Reales is another wonderful example of Spanish Colonial architecture. The structure is actually composed of two connected buildings. The first building held government offices and the Royal Court, which was the first court of law in the New World. The second building was used as a residence for high government officials.

The museum documents the history of Santo Domingo, displaying an interesting collection of Taino artifacts and Colonial furnishings. It also has a large and interesting collection of antique weapons. The museum’s large interior courtyard provides a great place to take a quiet break.

Calle las Damas, corner of Calle Mercedes
Telephone: 809-682-4202
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9 am – 5 pm

Museo Infantil Trampolín (Trampolín Children’s Museum)

Trampolin Museum, Santo Domingo Attractions
This is an interactive museum for children aged 4-12. The educational exhibits focus on nature, science and ecology.

Calle las Damas, Casa Rodrigo de Bastidas
Telephone: 809-685-5551
Hours: Tuesday to Friday 9 am – 5 pm, Saturday – Sunday 10 am – 6 pm

Panteón Nacional (National Pantheon)

Pantheon, Colonial Zone Santo Domingo
This Neoclassical building was originally a Jesuit church. Construction began in 1714 and ended in 1746. After it was deconsecrated, the structure served a variety of purposes, including a warehouse and a theater.

In 1958, dictator Rafael Trujillo converted the building into a shrine to illustrious Dominicans, perhaps expecting to have his own remains interred there after his death. The impressive chandelier was a gift from the Spanish dictator Franco.

Calle Las Damas, corner of Mercedes
Telephone: 809-686-2453
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9 am – 5 pm

Museo de la Atarazana

Atarazana, Santo Domingo
Another popular Santo Domingo attraction is the Museo de la Atarazana. Originally a customs office and warehouse, the building dates from 1514. It is now a marine archeology museum that contains artifacts salvaged from Spanish shipwrecks. The display includes treasure from the Concepción, a ship that sank during a hurricane in the 1500s. Highlights of the exhibit are silver bars, gold coins and pewter plates.

Calle Colón 4, between La Atarazana and Vicente Celestino Duarte
Telephone: 809-686-2453
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9 am – 5 pm, Sunday 9 am – 1 pm (currently closed for renovation)

Fortaleza Ozama (Ozama Fort)

Ozama Fort, Santo Domingo Colonial Zone
Located on a hill overlooking the Ozama River, this fort was constructed to defend Santo Domingo from foreign invaders and pirates. Built in 1502, it offers a fine example of Spanish Colonial military architecture. Be sure to take the stairs up to the top of the fort to enjoy the panoramic view.

Calle las Damas
Telephone 809-686-0222
Hours: Monday to Saturday 9:30 am – 6:30 pm, Sunday 9 am – 4 pm

Casa de Tostado

Casa de Tostada Santo Domingo Attractions
Built in 1503, this house was the residence of Francisco Tostado. An interesting example of Spanish Colonial architecture, it features the only double Gothic window in the New World.

The restored building holds the Museo de la Familia Dominicana (Museum of the Dominican Family), displaying a collection of 19th century decorative arts. While the exhibit of furniture, bronzes, porcelain, paintings and photos is moderately interesting, the building itself is the true attraction.

Calle Arzobispo Meriño and Padre Billini
Telephone 809-689-5000
Hours: Monday to Saturday 9 am – 4 pm

Museo del Hombre Dominicano (Museum of Dominican Man)

Hombre Dominicano, Santo Domingo Museums
This archeology and ethnology museum is one of the most interesting museums in Santo Domingo. The focus is on Taino and Dominican culture. It features the finest collection of Pre-Colombian Taino artifacts in the world, as well as exhibitions on slavery, voodoo and carnival.

Plaza de la Cultura
Telephone: 809-687-3623
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10 am – 5 pm

Museo del Arte Moderno (Museum of Modern Art)

Modern Art Santo Domingo Museums
The Museum of Modern Art has permanent and temporary exhibitions of 20th century and contemporary Dominican Art. The permanent exhibition includes works by famous Dominican artists, including Yoryi Morel, Celeste Woss y Gil, Jaime Colson, Darío Suro, Gilberto Hernández Ortega and Eligio Pichardo.

Plaza de la Cultura
Telephone: 809-685-2153
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10 am – 6 pm

Museo Bellapart (Bellapart Museum)

Bellapart Santo Domingo Museums
This small private museum has works by important Dominican artists, as well as foreign artists who worked in the country. Bellapart Museum provides a good introduction to Dominican art, with works by Yoryi Morel, Josep Gausachs, Celeste Woss y Gil, Jaime Colson, Darío Suro, Vela Zanetti, Eugenio Granell, Eligio Pichardo, Gilberto Hernández Ortega, Clara Ledesma, Cándido Bidó and others.

The museum is located on the 5th floor of the Honda Building. Don’t be put off by the car dealership on the first floor – the museum upstairs is beautifully arranged and well worth a visit.

Avenida J. F. Kennedy, corner of Dr. Lembert Peguero
Edificio Honda (Honda Building)
Telephone: 809-541-7721 ext. 296
Hours: Monday to Friday 9 am to 6 pm, Saturday 9 am – 12:30 pm