Geography of the Dominican Republic

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The Dominican Republic (Spanish: República Dominicana) is a country in the West Indies that occupies the eastern two-thirds of Hispaniola. It has an area of 48,442 km², including offshore islands. The land border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, which occupies the western one-third of the island, is 388 km long. The maximum length, east to west, is 390 km from Punta de Agua to Las Lajas, on the border with Haiti. The maximum width, north to south, is 265 km from Cape Isabela to Cape Beata.[1] The capital, Santo Domingo, is located on the south coast.

The Dominican Republic's shores are washed by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and the Caribbean Sea to the south. The Mona Passage, a channel about 130 km wide, separates the country (and Hispaniola) from Puerto Rico.



  • Total: 48,730 km²
  • Land: 48,380 km²
  • Water: 350 km²
  • Total: 275 km
  • Border countries: Haiti 275 km
  • Contiguous zone: 24 nmi (44.4 km; 27.6 mi)
  • Continental shelf: 200 nmi (370.4 km; 230.2 mi) or to the edge of the continental margin
  • Exclusive economic zone: 200 nmi (370.4 km; 230.2 mi)
  • Territorial sea: 6 nmi (11.1 km; 6.9 mi)
  • Arable land: 21%
  • Permanent crops: 9%
  • Permanent pastures: 43%
  • Forests and woodland: 12%
  • Other: 15% (1993 est.)


The country is a tropical, maritime nation. Conditions are ameliorated in many areas by elevation and by the northeast trade winds, which blow steadily from the Atlantic all year long. The annual mean temperature is 25 °C (77 °F); regional mean temperatures range from 18 °C (64.4 °F) in the heart of the Cordillera Central (Constanza) to as high as 27 °C (80.6 °F) in arid regions. Temperatures rarely rise above 32 °C (89.6 °F), and freezing temperatures only occur in winter in the highest mountains. The average temperature in Santo Domingo in January is 24 °C (75.2 °F), and 27 °C (80.6 °F) in July.

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