Category Archives: TRAVEL GUIDES

PHOTOS: 2016 National Carnival Parade in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (Desfile Nacional 2016)

Carnival Portrait DRLast Sunday was the last carnival parade in the Dominican Republic–the grand finale, known as the Desfile Nacional de Carnaval, in Santo Domingo. It landed on the first Sunday of March this year, a week after Independence Day festivities.

The best regional carnival groups from around the country–including Puerto Plata, San Juan de la Managua, Barahona, La Romana, Montecristi, Constanza, Santiago, and San Pedro de Macoris among others–descended on the capital to parade down the city’s grand seafront boulevard (or Malecon). From the devils of the southwest region to the lechones of Santiago and the Guloyas of San Pedro de Macoris, the parade offered a fantastic glimpse into the DR’s diversity. They strutted, danced, chanted, performed stunts and showed off their best–in the hopes of winning the big carnival cash prizes. The Afro-Dominican groups from the southwest and the southeast were the most incredible to witness–from their indigenous outfits and body paints, to African chants, drumming and incense spreading on their path.

Guest of honor Curacao opened the parade, and Continue reading »

Dominican Republic’s Santiago Carnaval 2016

hile the rest of the world is done with Carnival celebrations, the Dominican Republic is still in the thick of its weekly celebrations. There are four Sundays of parades to go in different parts of the country–including the grand finale in Santo Domingo in early March.

Last Sunday I attended the city of Santiago’s Carnival–one of the most colorful, popular and culturally interesting you can attend. The celebrations center around the city’s most popular sight, the Monumento a los Heroes de la Restauracion (commonly known as Monumento de Santiago), giving the already-colorful event a gorgeous, green backdrop.

Dominicans have their own way of doing things–and that includes carnival. Carnaval dominicano is pure art and creativity, history and culture. The main attraction isn’t hundreds of women in feathers and barely-there bikinis, but rather, folkloric characters and personalities that date back to the colonial times and share an aspect of Dominican life or society–whether Taino, Spanish or African. Each one of >> Continue reading »