The botanical gardens, on Av Jardín Botánico and Los Próceres (daily 9am–6pm; RD$50;, has samples of flora from every part of the island, a pavilion with three hundred types of orchid (most endemic) and greenhouses for bromeliads and aquatic plants. Less indigenous but quite striking is the manicured Japanese garden with a maze of shrubs and a pagoda with shaded benches beside a babbling brook. An RD$15 train ride will take you through the length of the park with a stop-off at some of the highlights, but it’s far more pleasant to wander about the grounds at your leisure.

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Video: 14 things we love about the Dominican Republic

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