The Dominican Republic is the site of the first permanent European settlement in the Americas; its capital Santo Domingo was also the first colonial capital in the Americas. It is the site of the first cathedral, university, European-built road, European-built fortress, and more. For most of its independent history, the nation experienced political turmoil and unrest, suffering through many non-representative and tyrannical governments. Since the death of military dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina in 1961, the Dominican Republic has moved toward a liberal economic model which has made it the largest economy in the region and a representative democracy.

Santo Domingo de Guzmán (known as Santo Domingo) has a population estimated about 2,253,437 (Metro) in 2006, is the largest city in the Dominican Republic, and the seventh largest in North America. Although the country in general is not supportive of the gay community, there is a somewhat attitude of ‘live and let live’ and gays are not aggressively harrassed.

The photos in this gallery were taken on an easy walkabout in central Santo Domingo.

Read the story about Gay Dominican Republic