Cuba is a country with a rich history. One of its many peculiarities is that you can witness history and visit sites that seem to defy, even today, the passing of time. Five Cuban cities feature sites that have reached the status of World Heritage.
Our programs and proposals invite you to dedicate your time to each of these cities. Here a brief review:
Santiago de Cuba
Santiago de Cuba, the most Caribbean of the cities of Cuba, is located in the eastern part of the island. It was founded in 1515 by the Spanish conqueror Diego Velazquez de Cuellar and was among the first seven villages of Cuba.
It was the first capital of the country, with exceptional geographical conditions. Through the bay of Santiago, the first black slaves entered Cuba and with them strong African and Spanish roots. It is known as the Hero City of Cuba, a title that was granted for the support of its people to the libertarian deeds of the Cubans.
In the city multiple architectural styles coincide, from the colonial and baroque to the neoclassical and the more refined rationalism, passing through the avant-garde and the art deco, which is why it is generally described as an eclectic style city.
Of special interest are the tree-lined parks, the stepped streets, the colonial buildings with huge windows and small balconies. Santiago de Cuba conserves historical treasures such as the first house in America, the first cathedral in Cuba, the Castle of San Pedro de la Roca or Castillo del Morro as it is also known, a military fortress declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.
This Renaissance military fortification was built in 1638 with the aim of protecting the city of Santiago de Cuba against a naval attack. The idea came from the then governor Pedro de la Roca y Borja.
El Morro of Santiago has been rebuilt on numerous occasions, the most important by the military engineer Juan Martin Cermeno, after being almost destroyed by two earthquakes in 1758 and 1766, a remodeling that gave it its current appearance. It is considered by experts in the field as an architectural jewel of undeniable aesthetic and historical value.
Camaguey is a city located in the center-east of Cuba. It was founded on February 2, 1514 as a village, called Santa Maria del Puerto del Principe, also known as Puerto Principe. The current name owes it to Camaguebax chief, who exercised his command between the Tinima and Hatibonico rivers, where the first houses began to be built.
In 2008, UNESCO recognized its historic center as a World Heritage Site.
Camaguey has the largest preserved colonial center in the country, offering visitors numerous buildings with significant architectural and historical-cultural values, as well as interesting museums. Examples of this are the San Juan de Dios Square, the Carmen Square, Bedoya, the Agramonte Park - former Plaza de Armas -, the Birth house of the hero Ignacio Agramonte, as well as other squares and alleys. The catholic temples that are located in the historical center possess high architectural values where different currents and movements intermingle.
Camaguey is called the city of tinajones, and there is a legend that says that if you drink tinajon water you stay and live in Camaguey or at least you always return to it.
Trinidad is located in the central region of Cuba.
Villa de la Santisima Trinidad was the third village founded by the Spanish Crown in Cuba, at the beginning of 1514. The town was evolving rapidly, which made it possible to be one of the most prosperous of the largest of the Antilles.
The conservation and restoration work undertaken by specialists in this area of south-central Cuba, and the love that its inhabitants profess for their city, made it one of the best preserved colonial cities not only of Cuba, but also in the American continent. It was placed on the UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites together with Valley of the Sugar Mills in 1988, an area where the sugar industry flourished with the arrival of families Iznaga, Borrell and Brunet towards the middle of the nineteenth century.
Some places of interest attract the attention of all visitors such as the History Museum, located in the old Cantero Palace; the Romantic Museum occupies the former palace of the Counts of Casa Brunet, located in the Plaza Mayor of the city of Trinidad; the Museum of Colonial Architecture: it has seven exhibition halls and is located in the former house of the wealthy Sanchez Iznaga family. It shows the architectural development of the city over the centuries; the Casa de la Trova de Trinidad is housed in a building from 1777 that has been restored.
Cienfuegos is located on the shore of Jagua Bay, at the bottom of it. This bay of aboriginal name (means origin, source, fountain, wealth) is open to the Caribbean Sea by a narrow channel that serves as access to the boats that use the port
It was founded on April 22, 1819 by French settlers under the command of Luis De Clouet.
This city, known as the Pearl of the South, has the second most important port in the country and in July 2005 the urban historic center was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site.
The streets of Cienfuegos were originally drawn forming grids. The eclectic architecture of the city preserves abundant neoclassical decoration. It is one of the cities with the best layout in Cuba, with wide and straight streets, promenades and parks.
Its numerous places of interest include The Botanical Garden declared a National Monument; the Cemetery of Reina that is an exceptional example of its type, and its architecture is inserted in the prevailing Neoclassicism in the buildings erected in the city; The Fortress of Our Lady of the Angels of Jagua that is located at the entrance to the Bay of Jagua; the Tomas Acea Cemetery, where it stands out an enormous building of the purest Doric style; the Tomas Terry Theater, built in 1889, notable for the fine state of conservation of its architecture and decoration or the Palacio de Valle, located at the southern end of the Prado, is a unique construction in Cuba due to the mixture of so many architectural styles.
Havana is the capital of the Republic of Cuba, its largest city, the main port, its economic-cultural center and its main tourist destination.
Founded in 1515 (initially on the south coast of the island) by the Spanish conqueror Panfilo de Narvaez, under the foundational name of Villa de San Cristobal de La Habana. It was one of the first seven villas founded by the Spanish crown on the island. Due to its privileged location, facing the North Atlantic coast, and the attributes of its bay, the village became an important commercial center, which is why it was the subject of attacks and looting by pirates and corsairs during the first years of the sixteenth century.
Its historic center, which together with its System of Fortifications was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1982, is today one of the best preserved architectural complexes in Latin America.
It is historical, architectural and above all cultural heritage, expressed in the fusion between Europeans, Africans and aborigines at the beginning, together with other more contemporary ethnic and cultural components, make the city an important recipient of international tourism and the center of the national life.
Among its most representative monuments are the Cathedral of Havana, the Plaza de Armas, the Morro Castle, the Museum of the Revolution, the National Palace of Fine Arts, the Great Theater of Havana, the Capitol building, the Revolution Square and the malecon, perhaps the most internationally recognized symbol of the city.
For more information, please contact Mrs. Olga Sanchez Urrutia at firstname.lastname@example.org