Welcome to Puerto Plata
Squeezed between a towering mountain and the ocean is this working port town, the oldest city on the north coast. Wander the Malecón or the downtown streets surrounding the Parque Central and you'll see that significant revitalization efforts, meant to impress an influx of Carnival cruise ship passengers, have replaced what was until recently a palpable feeling of neglect. Intermingled with run-of-the-mill shops are the fading, once-opulent homes built by wealthy German tobacco merchants in the 1870s. Several restaurants are worth a visit, as are a few interesting museums, and the cable car ride to the nearby bluff, if not clouded over, offers panoramic views.