We are in the Dominican Republic? Are you serious? This is the impression that the traveler gets when visiting this part of the Dominican Republic along the 30 km linking the urban area of the town of Constanza with the highest plains of Valle Nuevo in the heart of the Cordillera Central.
The territory of Constanza has four mountain valleys: Tireo, La Culata, Valle Nuevo and Constanza, which is the tallest. It belongs to the province of La Vega and is a municipality at 1.200 m above sea level, with an area of 30 km2. It is located in the Central Cordillera of the Dominican Republic, and is a perfect combination of mountains and valleys, surrounded by majestic landscapes, with flowers, wildlife and fresh air that never fail to impress and captivate.
It feels like being in a Swiss village because of the pines, its splendid valley planted with flowers, and the architecture of the cottages and small hotels that are located here. It is known to be the coldest city in the Dominican Republic and throughout the whole of the Caribbean. The average annual temperature is 18°C and rarely exceeds 30°C in the summer, and can drop below 0°C during the winter. It is a very fertile area and has a high production of flowers and ornamental plants, vegetables, fruits, is also famous for the type of strawberries grown here.
Things to Do
Constanza is visited by those who enjoy ecotourism adventures and lush mountain scenery. It provides the opportunity to participate in trekking, excursions with all-terrain vehicles, monster trucks or jeep safaris. For private aviation enthusiasts, Constanza has the Aeródromo Expedición 14 de Junio, where Fly-In tourism is promoted. For information on Constanza and ecotourism tours in the area, contact the Tourist Information Centre at +1809 539 1022
Where to Go from Here
Valle Nuevo is 17 km from Constanza in the province of La Vega. Located at 2.250 m above sea level, it is one of several plateaus that make up part of the 910 km2 of the National Park Juan Bautista Perez Rancier, which was established as a scientific reserve in 1983 and elevated to national park status with this same name in 1996. Route 41, a dirt road known as Antonio Duvergé, crosses the park from north to south. New Valley is also known as Valle Encantado, which could be because of the tall pines (Pinus West) and are called Pajon Danthonia domingensis which, combined with the Pirámide Ciclópea, make this valley a mysterious place.
Pirámide Ciclópea, is 44 km from Constanza in Valle Nuevo and precisely in the area known as The Fridge. You can also find the place known as the pyramid, but in reality, it is one and the same. Although it may appear to be from the pre-Columbian times, the pyramid was built in 1957 in gratitude to Trujillo for the construction of the road José Durán, which connects Constanza and San José de Ocoa. The point where it is located indicates the division of the municipalities.
Piedras Letradas de Constanza, the mark of the Taino culture, is a great sanctuary full of Indian petroglyphs which recreates the life and habits of a civilization that has been extinct for over 500 years. It is located 1.635 m above sea level, where winter temperatures are recorded as low as -2°C. This natural monument ends up in the Swamp of Bermudez, through mountain paths bordered by dense native vegetation.
The Reserva Científica Ébano Verde. This reserve is located in the Central Cordillera and stretches between the towns of La Vega, Jarabacoa and Constanza. It encloses 10% of the national flora. This wet alpine forest reserve owes its name to the endemic hardwood tree, the green ebony Magnolia pallescens, which is found within the Reserve. The hill La Golondrina is the highest point, at 1.565 m. It is bisected by the River Camú whose sound you can enjoy hiking along its trails. The reserve forms a bird watching area and is home to a protected species. To access the Ébano Verde Scientific Reserve, it is necessary to apply for a permit by phone at +1809 565 1422 or contact the Office of the Undersecretary of Protected Areas and Biodiversity, Protected Areas Management, firstname.lastname@example.org.
El Arroyazo is a spa that originates within the forest area of Ebano Verde Scientific Reserve, on the south-southwest border. Falling in between waterfalls and rapids, the water has formed a large swimming pool which is surrounded by a huge rock. In this pool, visitors can bathe in its cool waters at around 15°C. For hiking enthusiasts it can be reached from El Paseo entre las Nubes by a path specifically designed for it.
Salto de Aguas Blancas, 15 km from the town of Constanza, and located at 1.680 m above sea level, is considered to be the highest waterfall in the Antilles. It consists of two falls that together form an impressive height of 83 m. The average temperature of the water is 10°C. Here, there are roofed balconies and facilities such as restrooms and parking, where you can comfortably enjoy this cascade.