The Dominican Republic is a country located on the island of Hispaniola in the Greater Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean region. It occupies the eastern five-eighths of the island, which it shares with the nation of Haiti. The Dominican Republic is the second-largest Caribbean nation by area (after Cuba) and third-largest by population (after Cuba and Haiti).
The Dominican Republic’s history began with the arrival of Christopher Columbus on December 5, 1492. The native Taíno people, whom Columbus had thought to be subjects of the Aztec emperor in Mexico, revolted against the Spanish invaders and killed many of them. Columbus then enslaved the remaining Taínos.
The Spanish colony of Santo Domingo became the site of the first successful slave revolt in the Americas, leading to the independence of the Dominican Republic in 1821. The new nation was led by Dominican patriot Juan Pablo Duarte.
After years of instability and dictatorship, the Dominican Republic underwent a peaceful transition to democracy in the mid-1990s. Since then, the country has been relatively stable, although it has faced challenges from Hurricane Georges in 1998 and Hurricane Maria in 2017.
The Dominican Republic is a middle-income developing country with an economy based on agriculture, manufacturing, tourism, and remittances from Dominican diaspora. The country is the site of the largest and oldest Catholic university in the Americas, the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo founded in 1538. The Dominican Republic is also home to the Caribbean’s oldest and largest fort, the Fortaleza Ozama, built in 1502.
The Dominican Republic has a tropical climate with year-round warm weather. The average temperature is 26°C (79°F). The country experiences two rainy seasons, from May to November and from December to April.
The Dominican Republic is a popular tourist destination, with beaches, mountains, and colonial architecture. The country is also known for its baseball players, including former New York Yankees star shortstop Derek Jeter.