The Capital Santo Domingo was founded in August 1496 on the eastern bank of the Ozama River by Columbus brother,
Bartolome, who moved the temporary capital from Hispaniola's northwest coast.
In 1502 governor Fray Nicolas de Ovando decided to move the town to the western side of the Ozama River, which is the place it occupies today.
Santo Domingo is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the Americas, and was the firstseat of Spanish colonial rule in the New World.
In recognition of the city’s role in the Spanish colonization period, and its many "firsts", the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) proclaimed Santo Domingo the cultural heritage of the New World.