Built in 1502 by order of La Española governor, Nicolás de Ovando,is considered the first avenue that gave rise to the New World.
For historians, its first name was La Fortaleza Street, because the Ozama Fortress was in its surroundings. Years later, in 1659, the City Council named it CristóbalColón,and Dominicans of the time indistinctively called it Capitanía General Street.
However, after the arrival on the island of Admiral and Vice Roy, Diego Colón and his wife, as well as King Fernando’s niece and granddaughter, María Toledo, its name changed and became Las Damas Street, being a favorite promenade for female aristocrats and their entourage.
Although the cobble-stoned street is by itself a historical attraction, having on its way sites, such as Ozama Fortress –a military structure built in the early 16 century to protect the city from pirates and conquistadors- and the Real Audiencia make it worth walking.
Its blocks also treasure the Ovando house, one of the city’s oldest buildings and currently a hostel, and the Panteón Nacional, an old Jesuit Church turned in 1958 into a site to keep the remains of Dominican heroes.
The street currently keeps its charm, only Covid-19 managed to temporarily reduce the number of people walking through it, but the flow is already increasing, tourists can be seen and, what this country couldn’t lack, traffic is back
And although not only women walk down the cobble stones that keep the secrets of centuries, its name remains intact as a remainder of a distant but not forgotten time.