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Popular Destinations

Villa Clara

 

Villa Clara is one of the 14 provinces of Cuba. It's located in the central region of the island bordering north with the Atlantic, west with Matanzas Province, east with Sancti Spiritus, and south with Cienfuegos City. Villa Clara shares the Escambray Mountain Range with Cienfuegos and Sancti Spiritus to its south.
 
It is a territory of extensive plains, mountains, rivers and artificial lakes that boasts a wealth of history, culture and natural values.
 
The northern coast of Villa Clara is dotted with numerous cays (part of the Sabana-Camaguey Archipelago), and there are many coral reefs, sandy beaches, and newly constructed resorts in the Ensenachos, Santa Maria and Las Brujas
cays. The cays of Villa Clara are treated in this site as separate destinations.
Among the province’s attractions the following outstand:
 
Santa Clara: It is a quiet city, built following the Spanish standards (a perfect squared layout with a central plaza), surrounded by extensive plains, mountains, rivers and artificial lakes, which boasts a wealth of history and culture.
 
Santa Clara is home to a mausoleum which houses the remains of Che Guevara and sixteen of his fellow combatants killed in 1967 during the Bolivia campaign. There is also a monument to the derailing of the armored train during the Battle of Santa Clara.
 
The position of the city, almost in the very center of the country, makes it a perfect halt and a great communication link, east-west and north-south.
 
Sister cities:
Santiago de Cali, Colombia (1994). 
Oviedo, Spain (1995). 
Bloomington, Indiana, USA (1999). 
Cheboksary, Russia (2004). 
 
Remedios: One of the most beautiful colonial towns in Cuba, full of Spanish charm, 45 km north-east of Santa Clara. There is less than an hour from there to beach resorts in the Ensenachos, Santa Maria and Las Brujas cays. 
 
Sister city: Ann Arbor,USA. 
 
Caibarién: Known as La Villa Blanca, it is a picturesque fishers’ town situated on the north coast of Villa Clara, about 7 km from Remedios, bordering the Bay of Buena Vista. It lies at the eastern extremity of the province, close to the border with Sancti Spíritus.
 
Hanabanilla Lake: This huge manmade lake (32 sq. km) fills what was once a deep valley on the northern slopes of the Escambray. With its 35 meters average depth the lake offers scenic landscapes framed by pine-studded mountains, perfect for boat trips and fishing in its waters stocked with trout and bass.
Villa Clara, Cuba

Viñales Valley

 

Western Cuba, a favorite destination for visitors interested in nature tourism, has the Viñales Valley, whose origin dates back to more than 300 million years ago, as an attraction par excellence to enjoy that tourist modality. 
 
According to experts, the Viñales Valley is an exceptional scenery, in which its unique nature and the preservation of the environment blend with the agricultural work of men and women, especially in tobacco fields.
 
Covering an area of 132 square kilometers, the Viñales Valley is also the most outstanding exponent of a chalky valley in the Antilles, and is surrounded by "mogotes", which are hills with round tops and vertical slopes.
 
According to experts, the valley's flora is closely linked to its ancient past, since it holds 17 endemic varieties that cannot be found anywhere on Earth, including the cork palm (Microcycas calocoma), which is considered a living fossil from the Jurassic period.
 
The region's fauna is highly endemic, including birds like the bee hummingbirds (Calypte helenae), Cuban trogons or "tocororos" (Priotelus temnurus), cartacubas (Todus multicolor), nightingales (Myadestes elisabeth) and Cuban grassquits (Tiaris canora).
 
The town of Viñales, in the heart of the valley, is a typical agricultural settlement whose main street is flanked by galleries of columns and red-tiled houses. 
 
The socio-historical development of the region contains elements and sites that characterize the Cuban people with antecedents from aborigines, African slaves and peasants. The unique features of the area's natural landscape surround all this.
 
In one of the "mogotes", known as "Dos Hermanas" (Two Sisters), visitors can enjoy one of the world's biggest outdoors natural paintings, the so-called Mural of Prehistory. 
 
The Mural of Prehistory, which is 120 meters high and 180 meters wide, was painted on the slope of the aforementioned hill. It is a singular representation of the biological evolution of Sierra de los Organos, also in western Pinar del Río province.
 
Experts recall that in order to paint the mural, the vegetal layer on the slope of Dos Hermanas had to be removed, while a score of local residents participated in the dangerous artistic work under the guidance of Cuban Professor Leovigildo González (deceased).
 
The passage of time has failed to erase this breathtaking work of art, which attracts thousands of visitors every year, who come to enjoy the images of the plesiosaurus and the megalonus rodens, painted with singular ability on the hill's slope. 
 
In addition, the Viñales Valley has numerous caverns, among which Cueva del Indio (crossed by the San Vicente River), Cueva de San Miguel and Cueva de Santo Tomás stand out. The latter has been classified among the largest caverns in Latin America, with more than 45 kilometers of galleries.
 
The Viñales Valley, which was declared World Heritage by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), is also Cuba's true Natural Monument and receives thousands of vacationers who want to be in direct contact with nature while they tour the Cuban archipelago.
 
A large number of hotels in Pinar del Río province are in the Viñales Valley, where Los Jazmínes Hotel offers a wide range of options, including trails for ecotourism.
 
Those trails are "The Road to the Mogotes", which begins at the hotel and leads to the depths of the valley, ending at the Mural of Prehistory; "Unsuspected Nature", in which travelers can enjoy the many species of birds inhabiting the region, and "The Secrets of the Underground World", in which Cueva de Santo Tomás stands out for its great archeological values.
 
The hotel's amenities include air-conditioned rooms, sports facilities and outdoors activities.
 
Another hotel is La Ermita, which offers the ecological tour "Wonders of Viñales", which consists of a walk to Sierra del Infierno to watch the local flora and fauna, especially birds, and take a close look of the cork palm.
 
The hotel infrastructure of the Viñales Valley is complemented by the Rancho San Vicente Hotel, which is located near a spring of mineral-medicinal waters that became famous in the 19th century.
 
 
Pinar Del Rio, Cuba

Matanzas City

 

For over two centuries, in recognition of its rich cultural life, Matanzas has been known as "Cuba's Athens." For obvious reasons, it is also called "the city of bridges." 
The city was founded on the shores of a beautiful bay in 1693. At that time, it was called San Carlos y San Severino de Matanzas. Its splendid buildings are eclectic in style. 
The area surrounding the city has some singularly beautiful features. The Pan de Matanzas (Matanzas Bread Loaf) Hill and the Yumurí Valley are particularly entrancing. Places to visit in the city include the Sauto Theater, the Triolet Drug Store and the San Carlos Church.
 Immortalized by painters, poets and musicians, Matanzas is just a few minutes' drive from Varadero Beach and near the Zapata Peninsula. The city of Matanzas, capital of the province of the same name, is in northwestern Cuba, 100 km. (62 miles) east of Havana and around 18 minutes from Varadero Beach. An excellent highway links Matanzas with the nation's capital.
 
Matanzas, Cuba

Península De Zapata

 

Parque Nacional Ciénaga de Zapata covers 628,171 hectares. is the main wetland in Cuba, as well as the largest (and well-preserved) of the Caribbean Islands. The Zapata Peninsula biosphere is a huge natural reserve for all manner of wildlife including local and migratory birds, lizards, crocodiles and rock crabs. Zapata Biosphere Reserve shows a great diversity of ecosystems such as grasslands; mangrove, Ciénaga, semi-deciduous, evergreen coastal and sub-coastal forests; coastal and sub-coastal matorral and coral reefs with principal coral species and coastal lagoons. The area also supports the main populations of the Cuban crocodile (Cocodrilus rhombifer) and American crocodile (C. acutus) and birds as the great flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber). Some 9,000 (2001) people, mostly of Spanish origin, live permanently in one of the largest biosphere reserves in Cuba. Economic activities are mainly silviculture, fisheries, community agriculture, tourism, handicraft and apiculture. At La Boca you can see crocodiles and take a boat to the picturesque Guama, a group of tiny islands connected by wooden bridges. The area is also home to one of the largest underground cave and lake systems in Latin America. Continuing 13km south from La Boca de Guama you reach the famous Bay of Pigs at Playa Larga. US-backed exiles tried to invade Cuba through this bay on April 17, 1961. The main museum dedicated to these events is at Playa Giron, which is 35km father south. The little village of Playa Larga makes a good base for visiting the adjacent nature reserves in Gran Parque Natural Montemar. Fishermen can partake in bonefishing at Las Salinas, and for tarpon and snook there is Rio Hatiguanico.Playa Giron, on the eastern side of the famous Bay of Pigs (Bahia de Cochinos), 48km south of Boca de Guama, is named for a French pirate who frequented the area centuries ago. The CIA-sponsored landing here on April 17, 1961, was defeated within 72 hours, as a museum and many monuments proclaim. In all, 200 invaders were killed, 1197 captured, and 11 hostile planes shot down. You really get the feel of reliving history by coming here, and the clear Caribbean waters washing these shores make Playa Giron a favorite destination for scuba divers and snorkelers. A lasting legacy of 1961 is that the entire Bay of Pigs area is strictly out of bounds to cruising yachts.
 
Matanzas, Cuba

Soroa

Soroa, also known as Cuba's Rainbow, is 70 kilometers west of the Cuban capital. It is a site of breathtaking natural beauty, with a 22-meter waterfall that invites visitors to take a refreshing swim any time of the year. The region's unspoilt lush environment is perfect cycling and mountain climbing, with excursions on the banks of the Manatiales River and unique baths at the so-called "Poza del Amor" (Pond of Love). One big attraction of Soroa is the nearby botanical gardens which contain an excellent orchidarium, home to more than 700 different types of orchild. The surrounding countryside is lush, hilly and very pleasant to wander around. For those into birdwatching, there are several viewing stations dotted around, for photographers, the area can affords a good opportunity for fauna and flora shots.

Pinar Del Rio, Cuba

Cayo Levisa

 

Cayo Levisa is located in the north part of Pinar del Río province, being part of Los Colorados archipelago. Privileged environment of this isle, a luxury for the lovers of the nautical sports. 
 
 
To Key Levisa, you consents for sea, from the pier of Palma Rubia, in a voyage that extends for about 30 minutes. The ship robs in a wooden jetty, to 2 minutes on foot of the Villa Cayo Levisa cabins, the only lodging of the island, that this compound for cabins near the beach. 
 
Three kilometers of excellent beaches and 23 places dedicated to the practice of diving, make Cayo Levisa an excellent square for the diving lovers , thank also to the transparency of their waters and the existence of one of the biggest coralline barriers in the world.
Exist in the place, coralline formations of around 500 species of fish, 200 of sponges and enough varieties of mollusks crustaceans, gorgonias and other marine animals. Especially structures of stars' coral and coral brain are located, sea fans, gorgonias feathery and numerous fish like parrots, barbers, hoarse, plate, chernas, pargos Creole and varied crustaceans like the lobster. 
 
Very particular attractiveness in this region the trigonias presence, is considered the oldest alive fossils in Cuba.
 
 
 
 
Pinar Del Rio, Cuba

Pinar Del Rio

 

Cuba´s westernmost province, Pinar del Río, would only have needed two of its many attributes to draw the attention of newcomers: the Viñales Valley, designated Humankind´s Natural Landscape by UNESCO, and the world´s best tobacco, cropped in Vueltabajo.
 
This Cuban region was registered as the New Philippines in the mid 1770s. In 1778 it was given its current name (after its oldest town). It is the only region in Cuba where there are two Biosphere reserves: Sierra del Rosario and the Guanahacabibes Peninsula.
 
Sierra del Rosario and Sierra de los Organos make up the Guaniguanico Mountain Range, which holds the richest flora and fauna in the region. The highest mountain in western Cuba is Pan de Guajaibón, whose summit is 699 meters above sea level.
 
 
The Viñales Valley National Park, which covers 132 square kilometers in Sierra del Rosario, stands out for its peculiar hills called mogotes, which have vertical slopes and rounded tops and are covered by exuberant vegetation. The region also has several caves that are of major importance from the speleological viewpoint.
 
Cueva del Indio (Indian´s Cave), through which the San Juan River (navigable) runs, and Cueva de San Juan (San Juan´s Cave), which are close to each other, and the Santo Tomás cavern system, which is over 45 kilometers long in the nearby Sierra de Quemados, are sites of undisputable wealth in a natural environment that is perfect for trekking along ecological trails.
 
One of the most interesting ecological trails is the Aquatic Route, which runs from Sierra del Infierno (where there is a countryside community that pays tribute to water and its curative properties) to the Dos Hermanas Valley, where there is a huge painting on the slope of a mogote that is called the Mural of Prehistory.
 
In the province´s westernmost tip, tourists can visit the Guanahacabibes Peninsula Biosphere Reserve, which is surrounded by two natural reserves: El Veral and Cabo Corrientes, and by an international diving center, María la Gorda, which offers 40 dive sites and a rich colony of black corals. Diving enthusiasts can visit Cayo Levisa, particularly a site known as La Corona de San Carlos.
 
The Roncalli Lighthouse, in Cabo de San Antonio, practically at the gate to the Yucatan Peninsula; game and fishing preserves; and a well-known resort of mineral medicinal waters in San Diego de los Baños are other tourist sites in Pinar del Río, where visitors express interest in visiting the fields were the world´s best tobacco is cropped and in tasting a liquor produced using traditional methods: Guayabita del Pinar.
 
Pinar Del Rio, Cuba

Cienfuegos

 

The city lies on the east side of Bahía de Cienfuegos, a deep, 88-square-kilometer bay with an umbilically narrow entrance and in which, as one 19th–century traveler remarked, “ all the navies in the world could rendezvous and not crowd each other.” 

Cienfuegos’ appeal lies partly in the European flavor of its colonial hub, with a wide Parisian Style boulevard and elegant colonnades. 

Approaching from the Autopista, the two lane highway enters the city from the north and widens into a broad boulevard, the Paseo del Prado which leads to the town’s historic core and later becomes the Malecón, a wide seafront boulevard stretching south one km along narrow peninsula ending at Punta Gorda, a once –exclusive residential district that recalls 1950’s North American suburbia, with Detroit classics still parked in the driveways of mid-20th-century homes.

Small beaches on the Caribbean Sea surround this urban center; such as Rancho Luna and El Inglés. The 50 scuba diving spots, between the entry channel of Jagua Bay and Boca Ambuila, are fascinating - apart from the famous Notre Dame coral column, there are sunken ships and abundant species of fish. Making this Cuba vacation spot perfect for any scuba lover in your family.

 

Cienfuegos, Cuba

Cayo Coco & Guillermo

 

These two contiguous islands are connected to the north coast of Cuba by a 27 km long “pedraplén” (stone causeway). They are both great beach holiday places for your cuba vacations. 

It’s a fabulous drive. On clear days, the transparent, mirror-calm waters reflect the clouds and the distant cays seem to float in midair, shimmering in the heat like a sort of dream world. 


Cayo Coco, which is named for a bird – the roseate ibis, or coco –, is the most important island of the King’s Gardens sub-archipelago, with about 370 km2, and boasts 21 kilometers of superlative beaches and limpid waters in stunning tones of blue and green. 

Cayo Coco is the home of Cuba’s largest flamingo colony, with thousands of them concentrated between Punta Almácigo and Punta del Perro, where the rose-pink birds seem to float atop the water, like fire mirages. 

Flamingos are just one of the 158 bird species in Cayo Coco, including the miniature hummingbird, ibis, herons, Cuban Cuckoo, egrets, sea swallows, as well as migratory birds that flock here in vast number. 

Cayo Guillermo (13, 2 km2) lies three kilometers west of Cayo Coco to which it is joined by means of another "pedraplén" elevated over the pavonine waters. 

Cayo Guillermo is a welcoming and quiet beach place that stands out for having the highest dunes among all the Caribbean islands, which can reach up to 15 m high, by Playa Larga (Long Beach), at the far western end. At low tide, you can wade out for 400 meters or more on the sandbars. 


The inshore fishing in Cayo Guillermo is great, the waters host plenty of bonefish, snapper, grouper and mackerel.

Farther out, beaked marlin and swordfish run through the Old Bahamas Channel. 

Both, Cayo Coco and Cayo Guillermo are nestled into the Jardines del Rey (Gardens of the King) archipelago, named in such a way in 1514 by conqueror Diego Velázquez, honoring his king, Fernando de Aragón. 

This region has one of the longest coralline barriers of the world, about 400 km long.

 

Cayo Coco, Ciego De Avila, Cuba

Cayo Largo Del Sur

The Canarreos Archipelago-whose high level of conservation and diversity of resources are its main potentials for tourism-lies along the southwestern coast of the island of Cuba. The gem of this group, which consists of around 300 cays, is Cayo Largo del Sur, a long, thin islet whose greatest width is 6.5 km across and whose narrowest point is just a little over half a mile wide. Everyone who has seen its 27 km (nearly 17 miles) of beaches describes it as "out of this world."


Prestigious specialized publications such as the National Geographic have said that the seabed near Cayo Largo del Sur is one of the best preserved on earth, the truth of which can be confirmed by diving at any of the 33 scuba-diving sites near the key.

Cayo Largo del Sur has 27 km (nearly 17 miles) of fine white sandy beaches. Some of the seven beaches on this islet-such as Paradiso (Paradise) and Lindamar (Pretty Sea) are very intimate; Blanca (White) Beach is protected by crags, and turtles come ashore to lay their eggs on Tortuga (Turtle) Beach. The sand on Sirena (Siren) Beach never gets uncomfortably hot, no matter how strong the sun may be, and colonies of coral are easy to find near it at a depth of 35 m.

Cayo Largo, Cuba