Columbus Lighthouse, Santo Domingo

Visit the colossal monument-museum constructed to honor Columbus and the discovery of the New World. 

Columbus Lighthouse, Santo Domingo
Columbus Lighthouse
© Turismo de Republica Dominicana

This huge construction dedicated to the Admiral had been being planned since 1852, when the historian Antonio Delmonte y Tejada stated his interest in doing a monument to honor the Admiral. Despite this, the idea was not carried out until the 20th century, when the working project finally started.

For its design and construction, the government did a contest in which 455 architects from 48 countries participated. The winner was J. L. Gleave, who started to work under the supervision of the Dominican architect Teófilo Carbonell. The construction started in 1986 and was finished in 1992 in order to celebrate the anniversary of the “500 years of the Discovery and Evangelization of America”.

The premise was that the monument should represent both a cross and a Mayan pyramid. Therefore, it was erected a very original monument made up of 251 street lamps and which covered an area of 2.6 square kilometers. During some special nights, the lights shine on the sky and they draw a great cross that can be seen from several kilometers away.

At the main entrance you’ll find flags from several countries symbolizing the brotherhood between nations. In its interior, you’ll be able to go all over the different rooms housing collections from Spain and different Latin American countries, temporary exhibitions and several conference rooms; the Archeological Museum, the Wax and Iconographic Museum, the library and the map room. You’ll enjoy for sure the main attractions of the monument: the mausoleum and the Chapel of Christopher Columbus.

The same year of its opening, the remains of Christopher Columbus were moved from the Cathedral, where they had been since 1544, to this lighthouse. However, it was a polemic decision, as Spanish have proved via analysis that at least a part of his remains is in Seville.

Don’t miss the chance to visit one of the most important monuments in the city, which perfectly mixes past and present.

More information:


East Santo Domingo. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

Ticket price:

Adults - 30 RD$ / Children and students - 5 RD$.

Opening hours:

From 9:00am to 5:00pm.


(809) 591 1492.

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