Photo Credit: Puno 3000

The 16th-century-style village of Altos de Chavon is one of the most popular and a must-see for travelers who are planning on jetting off to the city of La Romana. A stroll through the cobblestone paths of the village may give guests the impression that they are walking through 16th-century streets. However, Altos de Chavon was actually constructed in 1976 by artisans, under the direction of Dominican architect Jose Antonio Caro and Italian designer and cinematographer Roberto Coppa, who wanted to bring a rich, architectural presence to the area. The Mediterranean-style terra cotta buildings that line the paths are filled with shops, galleries, studios and restaurants.

Among these European-inspired buildings is The Archeological Regional Museum, which is sure to please history lovers. Although it would be easy for travelers to pass this small stone building, it contains fascinating pre-Columbian artifacts that should not be missed by those who are strolling through Altos de Chavon. Still, another interesting site within the village is St. Stanislaus Church. This Catholic establishment is home to the ashes of its namesake saint and still holds weekly masses. Additionally, lucky travelers may have the chance to see a blushing bride and her groom outside of this church, as it is a very popular place for weddings.

For those travelers who are looking to pick up a few unique Dominican souvenirs, Altos de Chavon can be an ideal location. The tiny shops along the village’s cobblestone streets sell a wide variety of items, including cigars, jewelry, clothing and artwork. However, as beautiful as the buildings that fill Altos de Chavon are, what continues to bring travelers to this area is the remarkable view it provides. The village was built on a cliff overlooking the Chavon River, which makes it the ideal place to indulge in a bird’s eye view of not only the river, but also La Romana and the nation’s towering green mountains. For this reason, adventurers who make their way to this village should definitely bring a camera and binoculars to get the most out of this spectacular view.

Travelers should also be advised that there is an admission fee of about $25 to enter this establishment. However, certain hotels in the area may provide their guests with free or reduced admission to this La Romana must-see.