Barahona, Dominican Republic
Barahona, located a three hour's drive west of Santo Domingo, was founded by French-Haitian General, Toussaint L'Overture. He believed Barahona's location was the perfect spot to build an alternate port to Santo Domingo's. The town itself is not really why people visit this area. There are a few small hotels and resorts in this region, but it's the surrounding landscape that is the real draw. The incredible natural environment includes mountains, lakes, interesting vegetation, and gorgeous coastline. The remote and hidden beaches are the prettiest you'll see in the Dominican Republic. A bigger attraction are the three national parks. The largest protected area in the country, Parque National Jaraqua, contains Laguna Oviedo, which is home to home to over 60 bird species, including the countries largest population of flamingos. Parque National Isla Cabritos, contains Lago Enriquillo, the largest salt water lake in the Antilles, located 45 meters below sea level, home of the American Crocodile. Parque Nacional Sierra de Baoruco is a mountainous park with rainforest vegetation. It is within this park that you can also visit the Larimar mines, which are located 40 km south of Barahona.
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