San Juan de la Maguana

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San Juan
San Juan de la Maguana
San Juan is located in Dominican Republic
San Juan
Coordinates: 18°48′36″N 71°13′48″W / 18.81°N 71.23°W / 18.81; -71.23Coordinates: 18°48′36″N 71°13′48″W / 18.81°N 71.23°W / 18.81; -71.23
Country  Dominican Republic
Province San Juan
Founded 1503
Municipality since 1844
Municipal Districts See list
 • Total 248.6 km2 (96.0 sq mi)
Elevation[2] 475 m (1,558 ft)
Population (2010)[1]
 • Total 78,313
 • Density 315.02/km2 (815.89/sq mi)
 • Urban 71,494
Demonym(s) Sanjuanero
(female, sanjuanera)
Time zone AST (UTC-4)
 • Summer (DST) AST (UTC-4)
Distance 85 km (53 mi) to Azua
120 km (75 mi) to Santo Domingo

The Dominican city of San Juan de la Maguana, or simply San Juan, is the head municipality of the San Juan province, on the west of the country.

It is the largest city of western Dominican and the centre of the region. It was one of the first European city founded in the Hispaniola island.

Name[change | change source]

The city was named after St. John Baptist; Maguana is the Taíno name meaning "small valley". In the area, there were Taíno people living here before the Spanish invasion.[3]

History[change | change source]

The valley area of San Juan was the seat of Maguana whose leader was Caonabo. Caonabo in aboriginal language means "gran señor de la tierra or Great Lord of the Earth". Caonabo was the cacique or chief of the Taínos, upon the death of his uncle and became the most important and powerful ruler in Hispaniola at the time. He led the Taíno revolt against the Spanish invaders and was captured and died in a shipwreck while being taken to Spain as a prisoner. A brother of Caonabo and other allied Taíno caciques led the revolt against the Spanish and finally lost the battle in 1495.

San Juan de la Maguana was founded by the Spanish in 1503 by Diego Velázquez, who later went to conquest the island of Cuba, when Nicolás de Ovando was the Spanish governor of the island.[3]

In 1606, those that were living in San Juan de la Maguana were ordered by the Spanish king to move to a place to the northwest of the city of Santo Domingo and the region was left without people for several years.

After the Dominican independence in 1844, there were some battles in this region between the Haitian and Dominican armies. The most important battle was the Santomé Battle on 22 December 1855 in a savanna to the west of the city where the Dominican army won the fight.

Population[change | change source]

The city had, in 2010, a total population of 78,313: 39,631 men and 38,682 women. The urban population was 278.1% of the total population.[1]

Geography[change | change source]

San Juan de la Maguana is in the centre of the San Juan Valley, the old Taíno Maguana, with the Cordillera Central ("Central mountain chain") to the north and east, and the Sierra de Neiba to the south. To the west there is a chain of low hills.

The San Juan river is the main river of the region and the city was founded on the left (eastern) side of this river.

San Juan de la Maguana has a total area of 248.6 km2 (96 sq mi)(without including its municipal districts), about 7.4% of the total area of the province of San Juan.[1] The city is an elevation of 475 m (1,558 ft) above sea level,[2] and at 120 km (75 mi) to the west of Santo Domingo. It has 10 municipal districts (subdivisions of a municipality);[4]

Climate[change | change source]

San Juan de la Maguana has a tropical wet and dry/savanna climate (Köppen-Geiger classification: Aw) with a pronounced dry season in winter.[5]

The average amount of rainfall for the year in the city is 950.6 mm (37.4 in). The month with the most precipitation on average is September with 148.4 mm (5.8 in) of rainfall, followed by May with 141.5 mm (5.6 in).

The driest season is winter. The month with the least rainfall on average is January with an average of 12.1 mm (0.5 in) and the second is February with 15.4 mm (0.6 in).

San Juan de la Maguana is in a warm region; the average temperature for the year is 24.8 °C (76.6 °F). The warmest month, on average, is August with an average temperature of 26.25 °C (79.3 °F). The coolest month on average is January, with an average temperature of 22.45 °C (72.4 °F).

Climate data for San Juan (1961–1990)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 29.6
Daily mean °C (°F) 22.5
Average low °C (°F) 15.3
Rainfall mm (inches) 12.1
Source #1: NOAA[6]
Source #2:[5]

Administrative division[change | change source]

The municipality of San Juan de la Maguana has 10 municipal districts:[4]

Municipal districts of San Juan de la Maguana
Code Municipal district Population
220102 Pedro Corto 6,891
220103 Sabaneta 5,621
220104 Sabana Alta 3,241
220105 El Rosario 7,426
220106 Hato del Padre 5,811
220107 Guanito 3,670
220108 La Jagua 3,855
220109 Las Maguanas-Hato Nuevo 5,192
220110 Las Charcas de María Nova 3,166
220111 Las Zanjas 8,991

Economy[change | change source]

The main economic activity of the province is agriculture and the main crops are rice in the summer, and beans in winter.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "IX Censo Nacional de Población y Vivienda 2010." (in Spanish) (PDF). Oficina Nacional de Estadística. June 2012. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
  2. 2.0 2.1 De la Fuente, Santiago (1976) (in Spanish). Geografía Dominicana. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Editora Colegial Quisqueyana.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Garrido, Víctor (1972). "El Valle de la Maguana" (in Spanish). Espigas históricas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Academia Dominicana de la Historia, Vol. XXXI. pp. pp. 329-339.
  4. 4.0 4.1 "División Territorial 2015" (in Spanish) (PDF). Oficina Nacional de Estadística (ONE). October 2015. Retrieved 27 November 2016.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "San Juan Climate & Temperature". Retrieved 27 November 2016.
  6. "San Juan Climate Normals 1961-1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 27 November 2016.

Provincial capitals of the Dominican Republic Flag of the Dominican Republic
AzuaBaníBarahonaBonaoComendadorCotuíDajabónEl SeiboHato MayorHigüeyJimaníLa RomanaLa VegaMaoMocaMonte CristiMonte PlataNaguaNeibaPedernalesPuerto PlataSabanetaSalcedoSamanáSan CristóbalSan Francisco de MacorísSan José de OcoaSan Juan de la MaguanaSan Pedro de MacorísSantiago de los CaballerosSanto DomingoSanto Domingo Este