Calle-Las-Damas-along-the-wall-of-Fortaleza-Ozama

Calle Las Damas

Calle Las Damas/ Street of the Ladies is the oldest street in the Americas. It is a beautiful street lined with historical buildings from the original settlement of Santo Domingo.

Calle Las Damas - Raising the flag at the Panteón Nacional.
Calle Las Damas – Raising the flag at the Panteón Nacional.

Calle Las Damas

was originally named Calle de la Fortaleza/ The street of Strength or Fortress when it was created in 1502 during the reign of Nicolás de Ovando. The street has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Calle las Damas in the morning.
Calle las Damas in the morning.

The arrival of Admiral and Viceroy Diego Columbus and his wife doña María de Toledo brought a little class to this new city. María de Toledo was the great niece of the King of Spain, King Ferdinand. Many of the high society of Spain and the ladies “of culture” took up residence on Calle de la Fortaleza. The name was changed later to Calle las Damas, named for the Ladies-in-Waiting that strolled up and down its north to south running length.

Calle Las Damas - Nuns strolling down the street.
Calle Las Damas – Nuns strolling down the street.

A Street of Many Names

During its history the street had many names, most of the names came about because of a name of a building built along its path. In 1659 the name was changed to Calle Colón in honor of Cristóbal Colón. The other names for this street were Calle del Gobierno, Calle del Palacio, Calle de la Capitanía General and Calle del Convento de Los Jesuitas. Finally, the the street returned to its original historical name, Calle las Damas. The name remains to this day.

The sign on Calle Las Damas with many of the names this street has been called.
The sign on Calle Las Damas with many of the names this street has been called.

Visit Calle Las Damas

Strolling down Calle las Damas makes for a nice walk. Not much traffic passes on the stone path. You will be surrounded by beautifully restored buildings on both sides of the street. While walking you can almost feel like you are among the privileged people from times past that used to take their afternoon stroll along this historical street of the colony. It is a must visit here in the Colonial City.

Some of the monuments you can see and / or visit along this street include The Fortaleza Ozama, Panteón Nacional and make sure to stop and take a rest in the beautiful Plaza María De Toledo or Plaza Pellerano Castro, lovingly called Parque Rosado.

Calle Las Damas - Escaleras las Damas
Calle Las Damas – Escaleras las Damas

Location:

Calle las Damas runs North and South from Plaza España to the Malecon ending with the long and hidden Stairs of Las Damas/ Escaleras de las Damas (The stairs connect the Malecon to Calle las Damas at Plaza/ Park Pellerano Castro.

All You Want To Know About The Oldest City In The Americas

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