Ruins of San Nicolás de Bari Hospital, Santo Domingo

Stroll along the Colonial Area and admire the ruins of the first hospital of the island.

Ruins of San Nicolás de Bari Hospital, Santo Domingo
Ruins of San Nicolás de Bari Hospital
© Richie Diesterheft

Founded in 1503 by the governor Nicolás de Ovando, San Nicolás de Bari stands out as the first hospital in the Dominican Republic, or more specifically, in La Española.

From its beginnings, it was used as a health center and church. It started being a modest building made of wood and straw but, later on, they were substituted by masonry, brick and other materials of the time, thanks to the help of the Cofradía de Nuestra Señora de la Concepción Brotherhood.

Together with the Church of Santa Maria la Menor (1512) and the Autonomous University of  Santo Domingo (1538), they stand out as the three treasures of the Ciudad Colonial.

At the beginning, its space was divided into three naves, being the central one a chapel and the other two destined for the aid of the sick. From 1522 on, the hospital began operating until the 18th century, when it was definitely abandoned.

Although nowadays it is in ruins due to a strong earthquake that took place in the mid-1900s, in 1911 some of the remaining walls had to be destroyed because they were in risk of collapsing and, consequently, they constitute a danger to those walking on its vicinities.

If you choose the night to make it a visit, you’ll be able to admire the mixture of mystery and beauty provided by its lighting

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Hostos e/ Luperón street, Colonial Areal. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

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