Background: Explored and claimed by Columbus on his first voyage in 1492, the island of Hispaniola became a springboard for Spanish conquest of the Caribbean and the American mainland. In 1697, Spain recognized French dominion over the western third of the island, which in 1804 became Haiti. The remainder of the island, by then known as Santo Domingo, sought to gain its own independence in 1821, but was conquered and ruled by the Haitians for 22 years; it finally attained independence as the Dominican Republic in 1844. In 1861, the Dominicans voluntarily returned to the Spanish Empire, but two years later they launched a war that restored independence in 1865. A legacy of unsettled, mostly non-representative, rule for much of its subsequent history was brought to an end in 1966 when Joaquin BALAGUER became president. He maintained a tight grip on power for most of the next 30 years when international reaction to flawed elections forced him to curtail his term in 1996. Since then, regular competitive elections have been held in which opposition candidates have won the presidency. The Dominican economy has had one of the fastest growth rates in the hemisphere over the past decade.
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Blogs from Puerto Plata
Latest Blogs from Puerto Plata
- March 11th 2013 Dominican Republic
by Words: 2009 Photos: 103
- January 14th 2013 My beautiful second home, The Dominican Republic!
by Words: 137 Photos: 7
- April 13th 2011 10 days of paradise
by Words: 575 Photos: 11
- March 20th 2010 Horse Riding in the Mountains and some scenery
by Words: 15 Photos: 26
- March 2nd 2010 The next day....
by Words: 47 Photos: 26
- March 1st 2010 Republica Dominicana....
by Words: 444 Photos: 10
- February 27th 2010 République Dominicaine
by Words: 924 Photos: 10
- October 15th 2009 Puerto Plata (Maimon) - Dominican Republic
by Words: 219 Photos: 69
- May 4th 2009 La République Dominicaine
by Words: 1153 Photos: 34
- April 28th 2009 Travelling around Domincan
by Words: 915 Photos: 11
- April 24th 2009 My dreams come true!
by Words: 149 Photos: 3
- April 23rd 2009 Les Turcks et Caïcos et ...
by Words: 1062 Photos: 33
- March 4th 2009 At the Airport
by Words: 113 Photos: 0
- March 2nd 2009 Getting Closer
by Words: 42 Photos: 0
- February 22nd 2009 Prepping for Dominican Trip
by Words: 50 Photos: 0
- September 19th 2007 Atardecer en Sosua
by Words: 8 Photos: 3
- December 12th 2006 Richard and Cara in the Dominican Republic
by Words: 240 Photos: 8
- June 20th 2006 Puerto Plata
by Words: 1 Photos: 0
- December 18th 2005 The Dominican Repuplic
by Words: 112 Photos: 8
- July 9th 2005 Cable Car Mt. Isabel Del Torres
by Words: 189 Photos: 1