What is the Dominican Republic Known For? 19 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know

The Dominican Republic is located on the eastern point of Hispaniola and boasts breathtaking beaches, swaying palm trees and turquoise waters that are so blue they will take your breath away.

It’s home to some of the best all-inclusive resorts you can find, perfect for travelers who want to leave their worries behind and relax.

While the most obvious reason to visit the Dominican Republic is to bask in the tropical sun, there’s more to this beautiful beach destination than just sunbathing and swimming.

If you think the Dominican Republic is just another beach paradise with little else to offer, then we have some information for you – here are 10 things the Dominican Republic is known for:

1. Ridiculously Beautiful Beaches

From the powdery white sand of Bavaro Beach to the dramatic cliffs of Bahía de Las Águilas, there’s no shortage of beachfront beauty in this tourist hotspot.

With over 800 miles of coastline to explore, you could spend weeks here and never see the same beach twice.

Whether you’re looking to soak up some sun or take a dip in the turquoise waters, you’ll find plenty of reasons to fall in love with Dominican Republic’s beaches.

Punta Cana Dominican Republic Beach
Punta Cana Dominican Republic Beach

2. Shares an Island With Haiti

Though it is often thought of as its own island, the Dominican Republic is actually a part of the large island of Hispaniola.

Located in the Caribbean Sea, the Dominican Republic occupies two-thirds of the eastern side of the island, while the western portion is home to Haiti.

3. Home to Many All-Inclusive Resorts

If you’re someone who likes to leave the thinking to others, then the Dominican Republic might be the place for you – there are tons of all-inclusive resorts in this area.

Most of these resorts feature a wide range of amenities, such as delicious meals, top-notch facilities and activities, and personalized service.

They say that you can never have too much of a good thing, and we definitely agree!

Check out these gorgeous resorts with swim-up rooms in Punta Cana.

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4. English is Widely Spoken

You might not expect it, but English is actually one of the predominant languages spoken in the Dominican Republic (after the official language, Spanish).

As a result, you’ll find that many signs and menus in the Dominican Republic are written in both English and Spanish.

So don’t worry – even if your Spanish isn’t perfect, you won’t have any trouble getting by here!

Overhead of David Ortiz
Overhead of David Ortiz

5. Talented Baseball Players

Despite its relatively small size, the Dominican Republic is known for being a hotbed of baseball talent.

Major League Baseball stars such as David Ortiz and Robinson Cano were born and raised in the Dominican Republic, and the country has produced more than its fair share of professional players.

In fact, Dominicans make up the largest group of foreign-born players in MLB, followed by players from Venezuela.

The Dominican Republic’s love of baseball is deeply ingrained in the country’s culture, and it’s not uncommon to see kids playing pickup games on makeshift diamonds in city streets or fields.

Thanks to the passion for baseball that exists in the Dominican Republic, the country has become known as popular ground for future major leaguers.

6. The National Cocktail is Mama Juana

Mama Juana, the National Cocktail of the Dominican Republic, is a traditional alcoholic drink that is sure to get you in the mood.

Made with rum, red wine, honey, and a variety of local herbs and spices, this delicious beverage is rumored to be an aphrodisiac, according to local legend.

So if you’re looking to add some spice to your vacation, be sure to give Mama Juana a try!

7. Great for Foodies

The Dominican Republic is renowned for its diverse food. Whether you’re in the mood for fresh seafood, traditional Dominican dishes, or something entirely different, you’re sure to find something to suit your taste.

The area’s seafood is especially noteworthy, as the nearby waters are home to a wide variety of fish and shellfish. The seafood here is so fresh, it practically jumps off the plate.

If you’re not in the mood for seafood, there are plenty of other options available! Dominican dishes often incorporate plantains, beans, rice, and meat, and they can be either mild or spicy.

Aerial view of tropical golf course at sunset Dominican Republic
Aerial view of tropical golf course at sunset Dominican Republic

8.World-Class Golf Courses

If you’re looking for a place to tee off, the Dominican Republic is home to numerous world-class golf courses, each offering its own unique challenges and breathtaking views.

Designed by legendary golf architects such as Jack Nicklaus, Pete Dye, and Tom Fazio, the quality of the greens and the course maintenance are among the best in the world.

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a first-time player, you’ll find plenty of reasons to hit the links in the Dominican Republic.

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9. Highest & Lowest Point in the Caribbean

The Dominican Republic is a land of contrasts, home to both the highest and lowest points in the region.

On one end of the spectrum is Pico Duarte, the tallest mountain in the Caribbean. It’s a popular spot for hikers and nature lovers, who come to enjoy the stunning views from the summit.

On the other end is Lake Enriquillo, the lowest point in the Caribbean. It’s a popular spot for boating, and its shores are home to a large population of American crocodiles, making it an important wildlife preserve.

10. Thriving Nightlife

What many visitors don’t know is that the nightlife in the Dominican Republic is just as vibrant and exciting as the daytime scene.

If you’re looking to let loose and party the night away, there are plenty of options to choose from.

You’ll find popular nightclubs with a mix of international and local DJs spinning the latest hits. Or if you’re in the mood for something a little more low-key, check out one of the many discos dotted around town.

Whether you’re dancing till dawn or sipping cocktails under the stars, the Dominican Republic has everything you need for a wild night out.

Just be sure to wear your dancing shoes – you’ll need them!

Rhinoceros Iguana

11. Home to the Endangered Rhinoceros Iguana

Aside from the white sand beaches and luxurious all-inclusive resorts, this popular tourist destination is also home to a more unusual resident: the endangered Rhinoceros Iguana.

Found in the Dominican Republic and Haiti, these lizards can grow up to 136 centimeters (54 inches) long. They are distinctively marked, with a horn-like bump on their snouts and a row of spines running down their backs.

Once found throughout the coastline, Rhinoceros Iguana’s are now confined to the inland, due to habitat loss, predators, and poaching.

12. Rain Doesn’t Last Long

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring… but only for a minute or two. That’s because in the Dominican Republic, rain doesn’t last long.

It might come down hard for a brief period of time, but it quickly passes and the sun is back out again.

So if you’re caught in a rainstorm while you’re on vacation, don’t worry. It won’t last long and you’ll be back to enjoying the warm weather and beautiful beaches in no time!

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13. Bring Some Cash

Even if you’re planning to spend your entire vacation at an all-inclusive resort in the Dominican Republic, you’ll still need to bring some cash with you.

The first place you’ll need it is at the airport, where American tourists are required to purchase a visitor’s card for $10. The good news is that this card is valid for 30 days.

You’ll also need cash for tips at your resort. Even though your room and meals are paid for, the staff relies on tips to make a living. Be sure to leave a few dollars each day for the maid, serveres, and anyone else who provides exceptional service during your stay.

So unless you want to spend your vacation eating up ATM fees, make sure you bring enough cash to last you the trip.

American Cash
American Cash

14. Merengue is the Official Dance

The Dominican Republic might be small, but it sure knows how to make a big impact on the world. This Caribbean nation is the birthplace of merengue, a lively style of music and dance that has become popular around the globe.

The steps are simple and easy to learn, so even if you’re not a natural dancer, you can quickly pick up the basic moves. And once you get the hang of it, you’ll be swept away by the infectious energy of the music and the fun of dancing with others.

It’s no wonder that this upbeat dance is the official dance of the Dominican Republic!

15. Faceless Dolls

No matter where you go in the Dominican Republic, you’re sure to see Muñecas Limé dolls. These colorful dolls are handmade and each one is unique, representing the diverse ethnicity of the people.

They are a reminder that we are all the same, regardless of our differences.

So next time you see a Muñecas Limé doll, take a moment to appreciate the history and culture that she represents.

16. Sancocho is the National Dish

If you’re looking for a hearty dish that will fill you up, look no further than the national dish of the Dominican Republic – sancocho.

This traditional stew is made with a variety of different meats, root vegetables and spices, all simmered together to create a delicious and filling meal.

The exact ingredients vary from region to region, but typically include chicken, pork, beef, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, and a variety of seasonings.

Beautiful silver ring with larimar gemstone
Beautiful silver ring with larimar gemstone

17. Larimar Gemstone

The Dominican Republic is home to a lesser-known gemstone called Larimar. Larimar is a type of blue pectolite that is only found in this island nation.

It is said to have healing properties and is used in jewelry and other artwork. Although it is not as well-known as some other gemstones, Larimar is becoming increasingly popular, thanks to its unique color and history.

18. Rich History

Contrary to popular belief, the Dominican Republic is not just a beach destination. While its sandy shores and turquoise waters are certainly a major draw, the country also has a rich history that is worth exploring.

The Dominican Republic was founded in 1492 by Christopher Columbus, making it the site of the first European settlement in the Americas.

It went on to play a significant role in the development of the New World, serving as a gateway for trade and colonization.

Today, visitors can see evidence of the rich history at sites like the Alcázar de Colón, a Spanish fort built in 1512 which served as the residence of Diego Columbus (the son of Christopher Columbus).

With its blend of natural beauty and cultural heritage, it’s no wonder that the Dominican Republic is such a popular destination.

19. Popular Wedding Destination

There are two words that come to mind when thinking about a Dominican Republic wedding: romantic and unforgettable.

A popular wedding destination, Punta Cana is one of the most sought-after places for couples to tie the knot.

From the laid-back beach nuptials to the opulent over-the-top parties, you’ll find everything you need for an unforgettable wedding here.

It’s also a photographer’s dream, as the landscape is perfect for dramatic shots. With crystal clear waters and lush greenery, you can create the perfect wedding photos that will capture the beauty of this place in all its glory.