The Dominican Republic Holidays and festivals are celebrated with vigor, music, dance and pageantry.
The costumes worn are magnificent and the laughter and joy is contagious, male traditonal folk dancers and beautiful Dominican Republic people dress in Parade Costume to celebrate the many celebrations throughout the year.
Every day of the year, their seems to be some kind of celebration somewhere hosted by local municipalities or all inclusive hotels.
Due to the Dominican culture, many of the Dominican Republic holidays and celebrations are closely related to religion and music.
Dominican Republic Christmas
The Christmas season is one of the most active times in the Dominican Republic and as far as the Dominican Republic Holidays are concern it is one of the most celebrated.
Dominican Republic Christmas trees are sold in many of the local shops, the trees are decorated with lights and ornaments of different colors.
Many Dominicans from around the world go back home to celebrate Christmas and new years. Many weddings are also conducted during the Christmas season.
Dominicans start to celebrate Christmas in the beginning of December and end the celebration on January 6, with the arrival of the three kings.
New years celebration are always loud, happy and exciting with Salsa and Merengue music.
Go to the Malecon in Santo Domingo or to one of the all inclusive hotels, villas and resorts in Punta Cana where you will find some of the best celebrations in the country.
The majority of the celebrations are surrounded by the Fiesta Patronales, they are celebrations that are held in honor of the Patron Saint.
Every Town has it's own festival of the Patron Saint, and on an appointed date each year, locals start the celebration which includes a wooden image of the Patron Saint that is carried all over the town by men and women.
Music, prayer and joyous parades, are part of the celebrations, "Las Fiestas Patronales" varies slightly in the different towns.
Samana and Higuey are known for the most colorful and artful Dominican Republic holidays celebration of the fiesta Patronal.
If you are lucky enough to find one of these local festivals, join the celebration, and have fun.
New Year's Day - January 1,
Three kings Day - January 6,
Procession of our lady of Altagracia - Higuey. The country's most important religious celebration - January 21,
Duarte Day - birthday of the founding father, celebrated nation wide, architect of independence, founding father of the Dominican Republic - January 26,
Cocolo Festival - San Pedro de Macoris - colorfully dressed performers known as "MUMMERS" dramatic street performers and dancers. January 1,
Carnaval is the highly expected festival of the Dominican year. It's the biggest most colorful event in the Dominican Republic holidays
The Carnival in Santiago has been going on since 1867.
It is a special time for Dominicans to go to parties, dance in the street, participate in parades, eat and drink, wear costumes and have fun with the locals and tourists.
Carnival - Every Sunday in February - la Vega, Santo Domingo, Monte Cristi and San Cristobal, can sometimes go overboard with the celebrations.
People dressed in colorful mask and costumes hit each other with inflated cow and pig bladders as part of the celebration.
During Carnival week, nearly 100,000 people participate in one way or another in Santo Domingo.
The Most Recognizable mask ( The Diablo Cojuelo Mask ) of the Carnival Originated in La Vega and Santo Domingo.
The Diablo Cojuelo is a horned devil that lashes out at bystanders with an inflated cow bladder to purge the spectators of their sins.
Tourist are highly recommended to join in the celebrations.
For the history and art of the Carnaval visit the Museo Folkorico de Tomas Morel (Museum of Folklore) in Santiago
Telephone Number 809-582-6787
Independence Day - February 27,
(Holy Week) Semana Santa, Holy Friday, Easter Sunday.
The Christian festivities coincide with a major Voodoo celebration near the border and in the sugar plantations where Haitian migrants live.
Labor day - May 1,
San Felipe Saint - Puerto Plata Malecon - May 3,
Fernando Rey - local Patron Saint - Monte Cristi - May 30,
Puerto Plata Cultural Festival - First week
Latin music Festival - Three day event Santo Domingo Olympic Stadium (no fix date)
San Pedro Apostle de festival - San Pedro de Macoris
Feast of Corpus Christi - June 10,
San Juan Batista - A religious festival in Bani, run by a brotherhood dating back to the Haitian occupation.- June 13
San Antonio - Fiesta Patronales in Bonao and Sosua. - June 13,
Merengue Festival - Santo Domingo, el Malecon. Starting the third week of the month and lasting for two weeks with virtually every Merengue act of the last 30 years performing and dancing to the country's favorite music.
Foundation of Sociedad Trinintaria - July 16,
Restoration Day, Declaration of War against Spanish occupation in 1863, final independence from Spain in 1865. - August 16,
Higuey, Festival of the Bulls - August 14,
San Miguel After the Virgin de Altagracia, San Miguel is the most important Saint, celebrated throughout the country. - September 29,
Our Lady of Mercedes - September 24,
Jazz Festival, Sosua and Cabarete, with international artist. First week of the month.
Merengue Festival, Music Festival in Puerto Plata. - Third week - dates vary from year to year.
Columbus Day -Discovery of America on October 12, 1492, Celebrations at the tomb of the explorer at Faro a Colon and at the Cathedral of Santo Domingo. October 12,
United nation day - October 24,
All Saints day - November 1,
Constitution Day - Dominican Republic holidays (signing of the first constitution, 1844) - November 6,
Bani, Images of Nuestra senora de Regla, the town's adopted Saint are carried through the streets in celebration. - November 21,
Boca Chica, Saint Andrew, Fiesta Patronal tourist really have fun with this festival. - November 30,
Santa Barbara day - Samana, features the music of Dona Bertillia, Queen of the Bomboula, a popular music on the peninsula - December 4, Christmas - December 25,