|- elevation||5 m (16 ft)|
|Area||853.74 km2 (330 sq mi)|
|Population||139,707 (2014) |
|Density||164 / km2 (425 / sq mi)|
3 municipal districts
|Area code||1-809 1-829 1-849|
Samaná is located on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in the northeastern part of the Dominican Republic. It is known for its mountains of which it is almost entirely formed. Samaná has numerous beaches, and with the 6 November 2006 opening of the new Samaná El Catey International Airport, it is bound to become one of major tourist destinations in the Dominican Republic.
It was discovered by Europeans on January 12, 1493 by Christopher Columbus who was greeted with a barrage of spears and arrows from native Taíno warriors. It is said that this was the first instance of violent opposition to the Spanish conquistadors in the Americas. The Samaná Province is also home to what are known in the Dominican Republic as Americanos de Samaná (Samaná-Americans) where descendants of free black Americans immigrated beginning in 1824. They took advantage of the pro-African immigration policy of then president Jean Pierre Boyer when Samaná was under Haitian rule. This migration to Santa Bárbara, Samaná began with 34 African-American families. Naturally, this African-American culture distinguished themselves from the rest of the Dominican Republic as they maintain many elements of 19th century African-American culture—such as their brand of English, food, games, community organizations, African-American names, manners, music and some recipes that have been preserved as a result of their isolation, which until the 20th century was accessible only by boat. Most are of the African Methodist Episcopal and Wesleyan faith brought to the island by their ancestors.
Samaná is considered one of the most beautiful areas of the Dominican Republic, yet remains one of the least known by Dominican natives in general and foreign visitors in particular. Its tourist industry has not yet exploited the full potential of its location: the tropical forests, coconut groves, hundreds of cozy alcove beaches with turquoise crystal clear waters, waterfalls, protected national parks, a protected bay, a peninsula.
Samaná is one of the breeding places of the humpback whale. Thousands of humpback whales come to the coast off Samaná from January to March.
At one time proposed to be the capital of the country, Samaná was to be sold to the United States as a military base during Pedro Santana's presidency, but the deal was never realized, because the United States felt that the cost was too much.
A highway connecting the Samaná peninsula to Santo Domingo is finally opened to the public in 2008. It halved the driving time from 4 hours to 1.5 hours as it is a straight 120 kilometres (75 mi), connecting from just east of Santo Domingo (near the SDQ airport) to just west of Sanchez. There is a significant tourist development evident throughout the Samaná peninsula, particularly that of large all-inclusive resorts, in anticipation of the increased tourism to follow the road's completion.
Municipalities and municipal districts
The following is a sortable table of the municipalities with population figures as of an estimate on the 2012 census. Urban population are those living in the seats (cabeceras literally heads) of municipalities or of municipal districts. Rural population are those living in the districts (Secciones literally sections) and neighborhoods (Parajes literally places) outside of them.
|Name||Total population||Urban population||Rural population|
|Santa Bárbara de Samaná||108,179||88,698||19,481|
For comparison with the municipalities and municipal districts of other provinces see the list of municipalities and municipal districts of the Dominican Republic.
Samaná has three airports and one harbor.
- El Portillo Airport, Located in El Portillo, Samaná.
- Arroyo Barril International Airport, Located in Arroyo Barril, Samaná.
- Samana El Catey International Airport, Located in Sanchez, Samaná
- Cayo Levantado Port, located in Arroyo Barril, near Arroyo Barril International Airport, Samaná.
- Consejo Nacional de Población y Familia. "Estamaciones y Proyecciones de la Población Dominicana por Regiones, Provincias, Municipios y Distritos Municipales, 2014" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved 2014-02-02.
- Article about El Catey International Airport, Samaná
- Oficina Nacional de Estadistica, Departamento de Cartografia, Division de Limites y Linderos. "Listado de Codigos de Provincias, Municipio y Distritos Municipales, Actualizada a Junio 20 del 2006" (in Spanish). Retrieved 2007-01-24.
- Consejo Nacional de Población y Familia. "Censos y Proyecciones de la Población Dominicana por Regiones, Provincias, Municipios y Distritos Municipales, 2012" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- El Catey International Airport Samana
- (Spanish) Oficina Nacional de Estadística, Statistics Portal of the Dominican Republic
- A blog post about the Dominican Republic's African-American descendants that established themselves in Samaná
- Clips of a documentary by Nestor Montilla Sr. that depicts the saga of thousands of free African-Americans who fled and settled in Samaná