Dominican Republic //

The Malecón

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The capital’s famous oceanfront promenade, known as both the Malecón and Avenida George Washington, is best enjoyed on Sundays, when all motorized vehicles are banned and it becomes a broad pedestrian-only thoroughfare. It starts within the Zona Colonial at the large industrial port at the mouth of the Río Ozama, where an intact section of the old city wall follows it for 100m to the seventeenth-century San José Fort, built on a strategic oceanfront promontory after an attempted invasion by the British in 1655. The cannon that remain appear to point across the street at a 50m-high statue of Fray Montesino, a sixteenth-century priest who preached against the Taino genocide, his legendary rage manifested in the flame-like spikes of his hair. This section of the boardwalk is extremely popular at night, with massive crowds and live music on weekends at the commercial port below Puerta San Diego and a lively crowd at D’Luis Parrillada, an outdoor restaurant with dancing at night right next to the Montesino statue.

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