Monasterio de San Francisco, Santo Domingo

Ruin · Tourist Spot
Travel back to the early years of colonialism at Monasterio de San Francisco, the ruins of the New World's first monastery. Set up by Franciscans, the complex dates from 1508. Its tempestuous history includes being set ablaze by Elizabethan explorer Sir Francis Drake in 1586, followed by destruction and reconstruction after consecutive earthquakes in 1673 and 1751. Originally consisting of three connected chapels, the monastery last served as a mental asylum from the late 18th century to the 1930s, when a hurricane dealt it a fatal blow. (Look for the chains used to shackle patients, still scattered around.) Check tourist information centers for a schedule of events, as the ruins host open-air concerts on occasion. For travelers who use our custom trip planner, Santo Domingo holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the Monasterio de San Francisco and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
Create an itinerary including Monasterio de San Francisco
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

Monasterio de San Francisco reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
186 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • The San Franasisco monastery is one of the highlights of the colonial zone. It is located a short walk west of the Plaza de España on Calle Hostos. I hoped to access the ruins from the main gate, but....  more »
  • Not only being in the first Franciscan Monastery of the Americas, imaging how big it was based on its ruins, but also experiencing Bonyé's Caribbean music and people dancing and enjoying. A magic...  more »
  • Build a trip
    Tell us where and when you
    want to go, we will build
    the best sightseeing itinerary
  • Refine it
    You have complete flexibility on your destinations and itinerary
  • Book as a package
    Use our travel agents to get
    package savings and hassle free booking
  • Enjoy your trip!
    Enjoy our 24x7
    on-trip assistance

Popular things to do in Santo Domingo

See all ›
Zona Colonial ©
Landmark
Zona Colonial
4.3
Duration: 6 hours
Basilica Cathedral of Santa Maria la Menor ©
Church
Basilica Cathedral of Santa Maria la Menor
4.7
Duration: 1h 30 min
Alcazar de Colon ©
Castle
Alcazar de Colon
4.5
Duration: 1 hour
Plaza de la Cultura ©
Landmark
Plaza de la Cultura
4.1
Duration: 2h 30 min

Side trips from Santo Domingo

Altos de Chavon ©
Historic Walking Area
Altos de Chavon La Romana
4.4
Duration: 2h 30 min
©
Scuba / Snorkeling
Scuba & Snorkeling Bayahibe
4.7
Duration: 2h 30 min
©
Speed Boats Tour
Speed Boats Tours Bayahibe
4.6
Duration: 2h 30 min
Teeth Of The Dog
Golf Course
Teeth Of The Dog La Romana
4.7
Duration: 4 hours

Hidden gems in Santo Domingo

Fortaleza Ozama ©
Historic Site
Fortaleza Ozama
4.1
Duration: 1h 30 min
Museo De Las Casas Reales ©
Specialty Museum
Museo De Las Casas Reales
4.6
Duration: 2h 30 min
National Aquarium ©
World heritage site
National Aquarium
3.1
Duration: 2h 30 min
Tower of Homage ©
Historic Site
Tower of Homage
5.0
Duration: 2h 30 min

Historic Sites in Santo Domingo

See all ›
Calle Las Damas ©
Historic Walking Area
Calle Las Damas
4.2
Duration: 2h 30 min
Parque Colon ©
Historic Site
Parque Colon
4.1
Duration: 2h 30 min
Panteon Nacional
Cemetery
Panteon Nacional
3.9
Duration: 2h 30 min
Ruinas de Engombe ©
Ruin
Ruinas de Engombe
5.0
Duration: 2h 30 min

Shopping in Santo Domingo

See all ›
Agora Mall ©
Shopping Mall
Agora Mall
4.6
Duration: 2h 30 min
Mercado Modelo ©
Flea Market
Mercado Modelo
3.2
Duration: 2h 30 min
Casa de los Dulces ©
Gift & Specialty Shop
Casa de los Dulces
4.8
Duration: 2h 30 min
La Leyenda del Cigarro ©
Gift & Specialty Shop
La Leyenda del Cigarro
4.7
Duration: 1h 30 min

Nearby attractions in Santo Domingo

The 3 Eyes National Park ©
Geologic Formation
The 3 Eyes National Park
4.6
Duration: 8 hours
Columbus Lighthouse (Faro A Colon) ©
Monument
Columbus Lighthouse (Faro A Colon)
3.2
Duration: 1h 30 min
Malecon ©
Neighborhood
Malecon
2.4
Duration: 6 hours
National Botanical Garden
Garden
National Botanical Garden
4.3
Duration: 2h 30 min