Santiago De Los Caballeros, DR – City Guide for Nomads and Expats

Santiago De Los Caballeros.

The second-largest metropolis in the Dominican Republic.

An important area for farming, as well as education. The city is actually pretty big and the countryside is beautiful. Despite the impressive Spanish architecture from the old colonial days, Santiago is not overrun by tourists. The locals are different here compared to Santo Domingo. It’s safer and the weather is better. The vibe here in Santiago is less Caribbean and more old school, traditional Spanish. The city is increasingly popular with backpackers and digital nomads looking for a cheap tropical mountain town to post up. The locals are welcoming and the coffee is fresh. No trip to Dominican Republic is complete without a visit to Santiago de los Caballeros. 

POPULATION: 700,000

 

SAFETY IN SANTIAGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

Reasonably safe in Santiago. You shouldn’t have any problems unless you’re engaging in unconventional activities like drugs or prostitution.


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RENT AN APARTMENT IN SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS

$300.00. You can sneak by on that, but allow for more if you’re able.

 

WHERE TO STAY IN SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS

The best area in Santiago de los Caballeros is in the center near the Monumento a los Héroes de la Restauración. Between El Monumento and Parque Los Chachaces is the real sweet spot. This is assuming that on your first visit to Santiago you’ll want to be near the action. There is a lot of energy here, with high end bars and restaurants on every corner. This area will give you the best logistics for enjoying the city from a walkable base.

Santiago de los Caballero Maps
Santiago de los Caballeros Map

 

THINGS TO DO IN SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS

Hike up to the Monument to the Heroes of the Restoration. There are great views from the hill.

Walk around the historic center, including Parque Duarte and Santiago Apostol Cathedral.

Take a trip to the Jardín Botánico de Santiago (Profesor Eugenio de Jesús Marcano Fondeur).

Check out the art gallery and activities at Centro Cultural Eduardo León Jimenes.

Make sure you also check out the city of San Francisco De Macoris.

 

BEST BARS & NIGHTLIFE IN SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS

7/10 

A college town of any size is likely to have good nightlife, and Santiago is no exception. Although it’s not as raging as the resort destinations or Santo Domingo, it is enough to keep you going for a weekend or two.

Bars that My Latin Life recommends:

Ahi-Bar Dance Club: Nothing particularly special about this bar. Just about anywhere in Santiago with a crowd is as good as the next. I’ll give this place the edge because it is conveniently located in the historic district.

Bajarando Bar: Another classic bar near the Monumento and Ahi-Bar.

 

BEST CAFES AND COWORKING IN SANTIAGO

Surprisingly, there are a few decent options for coffeeshops and coworking spaces in Santiago.

My Latin Life recommends:

Centro Profesional Metropolitano: The best coworking in Santiago.

Santo Domingo Café: Excellent cafe with wifi.

Cafeteria by Square One: Modern, organized cafe with booths and stable wifi.

BRUNCH Café Bistro by Luisa Gabriela: Great place to eat and use some wifi.

Scory Cafe: One of the most popular cafes in Santiago.

 

COST OF LIVING IN SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS

The cost of living in Santiago de los Caballeros is low. You can live here for very cheap. Fruit and vegetables and super cheap yet organic and high quality. The following data is from Expatistan, a crowdsourced database of prices and cost of living around the world. In our experience, the data tends to underestimate cost of living, so take the following as the minimum you might need to live here.

*Figures are listed in USD

You’ll need a minimum of $707 USD/month to live in Santiago, Dominican Republic

santiago-dominican-republic-cost-of-living

FINAL THOUGHTS

Santiago is a comfortable city. Less dirty and chaotic than Santo Domingo, but just as poorly equipped for rapid population growth. It’s known as a student city, and a center of Dominican culture. You won’t find too many expats in the low season, but there are definitely some Canadian, American and Europeans running around. Not too many backpacker-type accommodations, but the low cost of food/drinks should offset the cost of a modest hotel room. Monthly Airbnbs can be found for cheap. Accommodation can get very cheap if you look around in person. Overall, the city is reasonably well set up for digital nomads. Worth a visit.


OVERALL RATING: 7/10


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