The Dominican Republic has a high poverty rate. It is striking, however, that one sees little direct misery. Unemployment is very high at around 30% and there is widespread underemployment.
There is a general compulsory education in the country, which is not guaranteed everywhere. The illiteracy rate of the population is about 17%. The inhabitants are mostly Christians and mostly Catholics (about 80%).
The land is mostly mountainous. This distinction is made in three mountain ranges. The Cordillera Central is located in the middle of the island on the Haitian border. The Cordillera Septentrional is in the north and the Cordillera Oriental in the east. The highest elevations of the country are the Pico Duarte with 3,175 m (by the way, the highest mountain in the Caribbean) and the Loma La Rucilla with 3,099 m. Both peaks are located in the Cordillera Central.
The flora in the Dominican Republic is incredibly diverse and, like almost everywhere in the Caribbean, very colorful.
The tropical vegetation meets us every step of the way. Banana plantations alternate with delicate flowering plants. Everywhere the air is filled with flower scents.
A special experience is the local artifacts. In the small shops colorful pictures, figures and masks are offered by local artists.