AZUA DE COMPOSTELA.

Ocoa Bay is extensive and ideal for fishing the local "curricán". It begins in Palmar de Ocoa, the site of one of the most impressive sunsets in the country. Caracoles Beach is also located in Ocoa Bay.

This is the historic beach where in 1973 the guerilla forces of Francisco Alberto Caamaño disembarked. The Tortuguero Dock and the Monte Río Beach next to Vigía Point, finish the arch formed by the bay before reaching the Puerto Viejo and Agua Dulce keys. Barrera is a deposit located near the town of the same name on a small plateau 900 meters above seal level in the region of La Tinaja, between Azua and Barahona.

The Martín García Sierra is the natural border between Azua and Barahona, which begins in the Point of the same name.

The modern city of Azua is several kilometers from the site of the tumbled ruins of the ancient city, where you can still see the walls of the church where Cacique Enriquillo was buried (he is the famous Taíno chief who led a successful rebellion against the Spanish invaders in the early 16th century).

It was in Azua that the very first commercial sugar cane in the Americas was grown, in the opening decades of the 16th century. The region boasts beautiful grey-sand beaches at Monte Río and Playa Blanca, picturesque river swimming areas, thermal hot springs, many healthful sulfur springs, and fabulous mountain vistas both inside and outside its two national parks, José del Carmen Ramírez and Sierra Martín García.

The region is famous for its folkloric festivals and monuments to the battles of 19th of March and El Número. The region is also gaining some international renown as a center for organically grown bananas.

Geographic Location:

The Azua villa is located 97 kilometers to the southeast of the Dominican capital. It has the following borders: Cerro de Resolí to the north, Cañada de la Vaca to the south, Parcela 664-B to the east and the Las Yayitas River to the west.

History

The current territory was formerly part of a "nitainato" section that belonged to the Maguana "cacicazgo". Diego Velázquez founded the Azua de Compostela Villa in 1504, during the government of Nicolás de Ovando. It was granted a coat of arms that was made up by a silver star on a blue field and, on its lower section, silver and blue waves in December of 1508, by a royal privilege ordered by Seville.

Azua was destroyed by a strong earthquake on October 16, 1751 and thus forced to move from the so-called "Pueblo Viejo" (Old Town) to the shores of the Via River. During 1844-1854 Azua was the stage for different battles against the invading Haitians, such as the conflicts of "19 de Marzo", "Tortuguero", "Las Carreras" and "El Memiso".

Due to the impression these events marked on the national history, it is important to remember some of the moments that stand out from the 19 de Marzo conflict. Once President Charles Herald noticed the movement for independence in 1844 in Santo Domingo, he prepared his army in order to suppress it. He leaves Puerto Prince with 30,000 men divided in three columns: one advancing through the north and led by General Pierrot, that with its 10,000 men was to take possession of Puerto Plata and Santiago; another advancing through the middle of the island, and led by Herald himself, was directed towards San Juan and Azua. Another was advancing south through Neyba and led by General Souffront.

The middle column was to join the south column in order to attack Azua. But Dominican troops led by Fernando Taveras, Vicente Noble and Dionisio Reyes attacked general Bround's troops who were lodged in Las Marías, and the first clash was produced in La Fuente del Rodeo.

While these events take place, Souffront orders to continue towards the rendezvous point with Herald's column. Between March 17 and 18 of 1844, Souffront's troops begin their march towards Azua, encountering the troops led by Manuel Mora in "El Paso de las Hicoteas". On the same day, Herald's army passed by Los Jovillos, pursuing the guerillas led by Luis Alvarez. The advanced forces commanded by General Lucas Diaz that held "El Paso de Jura" attack Charles Herald's columns by surprise. On March 19, Dominican forces were positioned in strategic points of Azua. 2,500 soldiers, ranchers and mountain men made up Pedro Santana's army.

Among them there were young soldiers from Azua that had been trained by Duvergé and Soñé. These troops were distributed in the following manner:
Azua riflemen led by captain Vicente Noble in El Camino del Barro; 200 men led by Nicolás Mañón in La Loma de Resolí; two cannons handled by Francisco Soñé and José del Carmen García were located in the center of the villa. Artillery forces commanded by Matías de Vargas, José Leger and Federico Martínez were located in Camino a Los Conucos and Las Clavelinas. In the morning of March 19 General Herald was organizing his troops in order to attack the Dominican forces, but Lucas Díaz, Juan Esteban Ceara, José del Carmen García and their agents attacked the enemy that advanced through El Camino de los Conucos.

Once Haitian commander Vicent Jean Degales was decapitated by commanders Matías de Vargas, José Leger and Feliciano Martínez, his troops (the ninth and tenth regiments) dispersed in disorder for lack of a leader. Later, the Haitian troops that advanced through El Camino del Barro (second and sixth regiments), are defeated by Duvergé and Nicolás Mañón's troops in Cerro de Resolí, after three hours of armed combat. Santana opts to retreat to Sabana Buey and from there to Baní.

Once the Haitians find out, they decide to occupy the city. During his retreat Santana placed guard posts in different strategic points in the El Número gorge and left General Antonio Duvergé in command. Some noted figures that were born in Azua include Héctor J. Díaz, Bartolomé Pérez, Víctor Garrido and Viriato Noboa. The patron saint festivities are celebrated every eighth of September, on "Nuestra Señora de los Remedios Day", with popular games such as "gallina ciega" (blind chicken), the running of the donkeys, "el baile de la cinta" (the ribbon dance) and the famous "diablos cojuelos" (carnival devils). Religious activities are also celebrated in honor of the municipality's patron saint. Azua has very beautiful natural resources such as extensive beaches, La Salina, and a cascade known as "Vichi" with famous medicinal waters.

The watering spot of La Sulsa is found in the Las Yayas community, its sulfuric waters are used by bathers for certain health problems