Santiago is part of the Cibao region, considered the richest in the Dominican Republic, per capita. It is surrounded by high mountains that have protected it from hurricanes for years and allows its dense tropical forests to develop slopes into the mountains, which are among the highest in the region.
It is also the heart of the Dominican Republic, and sometimes referred to as the unofficial capital of the country, mainly because of the warmness and passion of its people and its rich history. Below are some of the things that make the region special.
Carnival is the most important and transcendent festival in Dominican popular culture and in the Dominican Republic. Carnival is a recreational celebration of freedom, integration and identity. Masks, exaggeration, sarcasm, the unusual, the satirical, the unprecedented, the daring, the grotesque and the imaginary are fundamental parts of the carnival.
Every Sunday in February, the carnival parades take place along Las Carreras Avenue, towards the Monument. To parade, the locals wear masks of “diablos cojuelos” and costumes with mirrors and bells.
Carnival is celebrated every year throughout the month of February.
The Dominican Republic is one of the main destinations for sun and beach tourism. For this reason, it has a large number of tourists (most in the Caribbean). Visitors can enjoy hundreds of beaches all over the island.
And although beaches in the tropics can be enjoyed throughout the year, during the Winter time it is particularly attractive to tourists escaping the chilling cold present in many countries.
Puerto Plata is one of the 32 provinces of the Dominican Republic. It is located 207 km north of the city of Santo Domingo, capital of the country, and 72 km from Santiago de los Caballeros.
If the province of Puerto Plata has an attraction, it is its more than 125 kilometers of golden sand beaches and turquoise waters dotted with palm trees and an exotic nature. “La Novia del Atlántico” has some of the best beaches in the Dominican Republic.
Recently, the President of the Dominican Republic announced the construction of a new highway called “Autopista del Ambar” which will connect Santiago and Puerto Plata through the mountain road, cutting the trip to the nearest beaches to just 25 minutes!
Baseball in the Dominican Republic is not just another sport, it is the king of sports, and for Dominicans it is a way of life. Also known as “la pelota,” baseball raises passions throughout the country, as most Dominicans play it, either professionally or as an amateur. You will not visit a place or corner of the Dominican Republic where this sport is not lived and breathed.
The “Águilas Cibaeñas” is one of the most popular, if not the most popular professional baseball team in the Dominican Republic.
Their stadium in Santiago is known as “The Valley of Death”, due to the impressive effectiveness of the team in their field of play.They always have a better record at home than on the road, in the Cibao Stadium they have historically been more dominant than any team. To date, they have won 22 titles, tied for most in the history of professional baseball in the Dominican Republic.
The season runs from late October to January every year.
Tamboril is considered by many as the “World Capital of Cigars” housing more cigar factories and rollers than anywhere else in the world. According to the Cigar Aficionado magazine , 44% of the world’s most traded cigars come from the Dominican Republic, the world’s largest producer of cigars, especially from the fertile lands of the Cibao capital, where 90% of the factories are located.
The area has also been the largest supplier of cigars to the United States for decades, placing cigars as the 3rd largest export product in the country after gold and medical instruments.
Tamboril is the home of well known cigar makers such as La Aurora, Tabacalera Arturo Fuente, General Cigar Dominicana, and Tabacalera Palma, where some of the highest-rated cigars in the world are manufactured, and is also one of the major agricultural producers in the province, principal crops being plantains, cassava, and sweet potato, which are sold in the markets in Santiago.
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