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Puerto Plata

city and port, northwestern Dominican Republic. It lies at the foot of Isabel de Torres Peak, along the Atlantic Ocean. Puerto Plata (meaning "Silver Port" in Spanish) was founded in 1503 by Christopher Columbus. Serving the fertile Cibao Valley, the port handles the produce of one of the country's leading coffee-growing regions. The agricultural hinterland is also a major tobacco-producing area, and bananas, sugarcane, and dairy products are economically significant as well. Puerto Plata's port handles principally tobacco, coffee, cacao, rice, sugarcane, bananas, and lumber. Fishing is important to the city, as are processing and manufacturing plants; chocolate, matches, dairy products, foodstuffs, and liquor number among the leading products. Tourism is prominent, and many resort complexes line the city's beaches, most of them at Dorada Beach. Puerto Plata also houses an amber museum featuring collections of fossilized amber dating back thousands of years. A cable car glides up nearby Mount Isabel de Torres for a panoramic view of the city and port

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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