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Cuban Nature for Tourism
Date: AUG 13, 2007
Other Reports

Cuba, whose rich nature spreads all over the archipelago, benefits from that natural wealth to promote tourist programs.

Being close to nature at a beach or a city adds value to any country's tourist product, and in the case of Cuba, the island is also home to 16,500 species, some of which show an endemism of more than 90 percent.

In addition, the autochthonous flora consists of 6,300 varieties of a wide gamut of colors and shapes.

Natural and biosphere reserves, natural landscapes, national parks and protected areas make up a broad network of tourist offers, marked by their wealth, excellent preservation and unique characteristics that make them stand out in the region.

One of the most visited destinations is the Viñales Valley, in the western Cuban province of Pinar del Río, which is characterized by peculiar elevations called "mogotes" (hills with upright slopes and rounded top that sometimes are more than 400 meters high).

In central-southern Cuba is the Zapata Swamp, which covers an area of 5,000 square kilometers and is considered the largest swamp in the Caribbean region. It is also a safe haven for more than 1,000 plant species and holds a world-renowned crocodile-raising farm.

The highest mountains are in eastern Cuba, where the Sierra Maestra mountain range offers the natural beauty of the national park of the same name, where history, legends and autochthonous traditions go hand in hand with the region's exuberant nature.

There is also breathtaking beauty underground, as more than 60 percent of Cuba's territory is made up of calcareous rocks. The strong influence from glacial periods and the weather have created the largest caverns in the region.

Experts say that there are more than 10,000 caves in Cuba, many of which are 25 million years old. One of the most famous caves is that of Santo Tomás, in the western part of the country, which is 45 kilometers long.

Another famous cavern that is visited by thousands of Cubans and foreigners every year is the Bellamar Cave, in Matanzas. The cave is 23 kilometers long and 300,000 years old. It is made up of three caverns that used to be a single cave a long time ago: Bellamar, El Jarrito and Soto Jíbaro.

The list of beautiful underground sites also includes the caves of Cuyaguateje, Cable, Simón, Paredones, Los Tomates, Quintanal, Aston, Caguanes, Palmarito, La Patana, Solapas de Jauco and Caleta del Rosario, among others.

Isla de la Juventud (Isle of Youth), south of Havana, holds the underwater cave of Punta Francés, one of the most beautiful landscapes in the region and an excellent place for cave diving.

Another famous cave on Isla de la Juventud is La Maravillosa, where there is an underground museum, the only one of its kind in the American continent, and where the life of Cuban aborigines and human evolution in the region have been recreated.

The beauty of Cuba's nature attracts thousands of foreign tourists, who come to the Caribbean Island every year to enjoy its unique natural environment.



Viñales Valley
Soroa´s waterfall
Soroa´s Orchid Garden.
Mural of Prehistory
Cabo de San Antonio. View from the Roncali Lighthouse
Guamá
Related provinces
  • Pinar del Río
  • Matanzas
  • Santiago de Cuba
  • Isla de la Juventud

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  • Gallery
    Viñales Valley

    Choose a small photo to enlarge:
    Viñales Valley Soroa´s waterfall Soroa´s Orchid Garden. Mural of Prehistory Cabo de San Antonio. View from the Roncali Lighthouse Guamá View of the Villa Soroa Diving site at Caleta Buena View of the coast. Palma Rubia Viñales Valley. Mogote
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