Preparations are under way for carnival season in the Dominican Republic, which begins in February and ends in April. One of the most well-known and colorful is the La Vega Carnival, in La Vega, situated an hour and 30 minutes north of Santo Domingo. This is followed by carnival celebrations in many cities among which is the famed Punta Cana Festival, which takes place in March:
The carnival season is traditionally a time of joy and excitement, where the local streets of major cities are filled with colorful processions that swing to the rhythm of carnival music. During the month of February the cities of La Vega, Santiago, Bonao, Santo Domingo, Cabral, Montecristi and San Juan are overtaken by carnival celebrations. In March, the Punta Cana festival gets underway.
By far, one of the country’s most important carnival celebrations is held in the centrally located city of La Vega. Carnival celebrations can be traced back easily to the sixteenth century, when the Spanish colonizers built this city. In La Vega, all celebrations are held on Sundays during the month of February.
The city of Bonao, one of the oldest on the island (named after an important chieftain), celebrates carnival on March 14. Also in March, the capital city of Santo Domingo brings together the best traditions from the regional carnivals to participate in the National Carnival Parade. The massive parade takes place on the city’s seaside boulevard, along the Caribbean Sea and in the old part of town.