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Recreation and Tourism in Eastern Cuba
Date: JUL 23, 2007
Other Reports

Cuba's options for recreation and leisure, including the Caribbean Island's natural, historic and cultural wealth, spread throughout the entire Cuban territory.

The country's tourism industry, whose main destinations are Havana and the beach resort of Varadero, has also developed a tourist offer that combines nature, beaches and traditions in eastern Cuba.

In that region are the provinces of Ciego de Avila and Camagüey, where Jardines del Rey (King's Gardens), an archipelago that the Spanish conquistadors named after the Spanish king, is visited by thousands of foreign vacationers every year.

In Ciego de Avila, the northern keys offer more than 30 kilometers of excellent beaches, dive sites and tropical ecosystem in perfect state of preservation.

The largest tourist infrastructure is on Cayo Coco, which is connected to the big island by a 17-km causeway over the sea. The key was named after the white ibis, also called Coco (coconut) birds, which nest on the islet.

The highest dunes in the Caribbean (15 meters) are found on Cayo Guillermo, another islet off Ciego de Avila's north coast. The province also offers tourists game and fishing preserves like Moron and Loma de Cunagua (Cunagua Hill), in addition to the singular landscape of Laguna de la Leche (Milk Lagoon), named after the color of its water.

Camagüey offers excellent beaches like Santa Lucía, which has a 20-km sand strip with warm crystal-clear water. The beach is protected by a huge coral reef.

Eastern Santiago de Cuba, the second largest city in the country, is often called the Capital of the Caribbean, due to its geographical location and centuries-old history.

On the outskirts of the city, Gran Piedra (Great Rock) – which is the world's largest rock, according to the Guinness book of records, stands majestically and impressively. The rock weighs about 70,000 tons and is 1,220 meters above sea level.

In addition, vacationers can visit the Baconao Park, a biosphere reserve that is famous for its stone zoo in the Prehistory Valley, the Transportation Museum, the Aquarium and the Sculpture Promenade.

For its part, Holguín has a rich diversity and exuberant nature, including nearly 60 kilometers of beaches on the Atlantic coast, many of which are as beautiful as the best beaches in the world.

In Guantánamo province, vacationers can tour places of high historic value such as the village of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción de Baracoa, founded in 1512-1512. Baracoa was Cuba's first capital and first bishopric.

The natural landscape is complemented by a flat 575-meter-high mountain known as Yunque de Baracoa (Baracoa's Anvil), due to its similarity with that blacksmith's tool.

Several rivers cross the region, including Cuba's biggest river, the Toa, which has several waterfalls. The most famous one is 17-meter-high El Saltadero.

Porto Santo Bay.
Bird`s-eye view of Sol Cayo Guillermo Hotel
Guantanamo. Market place.
Panoramic view. Cayo Coco
Cayo Coco. View of the interior lagoon.
Related provinces
  • Ciego de Avila
  • Holguín
  • Santiago de Cuba
  • Guantánamo

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  • Gallery
    Porto Santo Bay.

    Choose a small photo to enlarge:
    Porto Santo Bay. Bird`s-eye view of Sol Cayo Guillermo Hotel Guantanamo. Market place. Panoramic view. Cayo Coco Cayo Coco. View of the interior lagoon. . La Farola Road. Jardines del Rey Marina. Cajobabo Beach. Sailboats.
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