Κυριακή, 2 Οκτωβρίου 2011

CUBA


CUBA

THE ISLAND OF TOBACCO AND SUGAR
THIS CARIBBEAN PARADISE IS UNIQUE!!! COLORFUL SCENERY, SEMI DESERT TO TROPICAL FORESTS, UNDERGROUND CAVES, A RICH SEA ECOSYSTEM, A SUBTROPICAL CLIMATE WITH TWO SEASONS: THE RAINY SEASON (MAY – OCTOBER) AND THE DRY SEASON (NOVEMBER – APRIL). THE WHITE SAND CRYSTAL CLEAR BEACHES, THE NATURAL BEAUTY OF THE MANY CAYS, THE CITIES AND AREAS DECLARED BY UNESCO AS WORLD CULTURAL HERITAGE, THE EXCELLENT FOOD. ALL OF THESE MAKE IT A GREAT ISLAND, BUT WHAT MAKES IT A UNIQUE ISLAND, IS THE CUBAN PEOPLE. ALWAYS FRIENDLY AND FULL OF LIFE, WITHIN THEIR MUSIC AND DANCE! EVEN IN SAD TIMES THEY COPE ALL OF THEIR DIFFICULTIES WITH THE COMPANY OF MUSIC AND DANCE! THEY HAVE IT IN THEIR BLOOD…


IN 1492 CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS REPORTED THE EXISTENCE OF WHAT HE CALLED “THE MOST BEAUTIFUL LAND THAT HUMAN EYES HAVE EVER SEEN”. HE LANDED IN HOLGUIN, SOUTH – EAST OF THE ISLAND.
IN 1514 SPANISH SETTLEMENTS CAME IN CUBA AND BY 1526 MOST OF THE ORIGINAL INHABITANTS HAD BEEN KILLED. SLAVES FROM AFRICA WHERE BROUGHT BY FORCE AND SLAVERY REMAINED UNTIL THE LATE YEARS OF THE 19TH CENTURY. CUBA ALSO EXPERIENCED A PERIOD OF PIRATE ATTACKS DURING THE 18TH CENTURY. IN THE 20TH
CENTURY THE ISLAND WHERE UNDER THE HANDS OF THE US FOR 57 YEARS. IN 1953 FIDEL CASTRO AND HIS FRIENDS BEGAN A REVOLUTION THAT LED TO A TRIUMPH ON JANUARY 1ST 1959.
CUBA’S COASTLINE IS ABOUT 3535 MILES LONG WITH MANY BEAUTIFUL BEACHES, MARINE TERRACES, CLIFFS, LIMESTONE ROCKS, MANGROVE FORESTS AND SWAMPS.




HABANA FOR MORE THAN 400 YEARS HAS BEEN THE CAPITAL OF CUBA. THE CITY HAS MANY PARKS AND NEARLY NINE MILES OF EXCELLENT BEACHES ALONG ITS LONG COASTLINE. BUT ITS GREATEST PART IS OLD HABANA WHICH HAS BEEN DECLARED A WORLD HERITAGE BY UNESCO IN 1982. SQUARES SURROUNDED BY MAJESTIC BUILDINGS, CASTLES LIKE THE REAL FUERZA CASTLE, THE TRES REYES DEL MORRO CASTLE, AND THE SAN CARLOS DE LA CABANA FORTRESS. THE MALECON DRIVE IS ONE OF CUBA’S SYMBOLS AS IT APPEARS IN ALL OF THE PICTURES. IS A LONG DRIVE BY ATLANTIC OCEAN THAT HIGH WINDS (THAT ALWAYS BLOW ON THAT PART OF THE CITY)  CREATE HUGE WAVES, THRASHING INTO THE SEAWALL AND…HEAR THEY COME…OVER THE STREET GETTING THE PASSING CARS AND PEDESTRIANS ALL WET! FLORIDITA RESTAURANT IS CLOSELY LINKED TO ERNEST HEMINGWAY AS IT WAS HIS FAVORED RESTAURANT. AND DON’T FORGET THE CHE ERNESTO GUEVARA’S MUSEUM. IS A MUST VISIT WHILE IN HABANA.






VARADERO IN THE NORTH OF THE ISLAND, IS A BEACH HOLIDAY PARADISE, WITH ALMOST 13.5 MILES OF BEACH.  IT IS CONSIDER TO BE ONE OF THE WORLD’S FAMOUS BEACHES. NEARBY IS THE CAYO PIEDRAS DEL NORDE UNDERWATER PARK.


CAYO LARGO AT THE EASTERN END OF LOS CANARREOS ARCHIPELAGO HAS IDEAL BEACHES WITH AN INTENSIVE BLUE COLOR AND FINE WHITE SAND. THERE IS AN AIRPORT SO THE TRANSPORT TO THE AREA IS EASY.

PINAR DEL RIO PROVINCE IS BLESSED BY NATURE. THE BEST TOBACCO IN THE WORLD IS GROWN IN THIS PROVINCE SO BE SURE TO VISIT A CIGAR FACTORY AND SEE HOW HABANO CIGARS ARE MADE. IN THIS REGION YOU WILL ALSO FIND THE PREHISTORIC WALL THAT IS A WONDERFUL, HUGE, COLORFUL PAINTING IN A BIG ROCK. A BIG INDIAN CAVE IS ALSO HERE THAT LEADS INTO A BEAUTIFUL LAKE.


RIO CANIMAR IS LOCATED BETWEEN MATANZAS AND VARADERO. IT IS A PROTECTED AREA OF NATURAL BEAUTY. ENJOY A BOAT RIDE ALONG THE RIVER BANKS WITH RICH FAUNA AND BEAUTIFUL ENVIRONMENT.

IN MATANZAS YOU WILL EXPERIENCE AN EXCELLENT UNDERGROUND WALK IF YOU VISIT CUEVAS DE BELLAMAR WITH STALACTITES AND STALAGMITES.
CIENFUEGOS WAS BUILD BY FRENCH IMMIGRANTS ABOUT 150 YEARS AGO. IT IS KNOWN AS “THE PEARL OF THE SOUTH” AND AS “THE PRETTY CITY BY THE SEA”. ENJOY THE MATI PARK, THE TERRY THEATER, PURISIMA CONCEPTION CATHEDRAL, PROVINCIAL MUSEUM, THE TOWN HALL, SAN LORENZO SCHOOL, FERRER PALACE, THE MALECON SEAWALL DRIVE AND THE PRADO PROMENADE WITH ELEGANT HOUSES.


TRINIDAD, “THE MUSEUM CITY OF THE CARIBBEAN” IS DECLARED AS WORLD HERITAGE BY UNESCO AND IT WAS FOUNDED IN 1514. VISIT THE MAIN SQUARE THAT IS SURROUNDED BY VERY OLD BUILDINGS, NOW OPERATING AS MUSEUMS AND THE TOWER OF SAN FRANCISCO DE ASIS CHURCH. THE COBBLE STONE STREETS AND THE HORSE-DROWN CARRIAGES GIVE THE CITY A ROMANTIC AURA.
 



JARDINES DEL REY ARCHIPELAGO IS A LONG ISLAND SYSTEM OF MORE THAN 25000 ISLANDS AND ISLETS. A LONG CORAL REEF CLOSE TO THE CAYS PROTECTS THE ARCHIPELAGOS AND PROVIDES EXCELLENT SCUBA DIVING. COCO CAY AND GUILLERMO CAY ARE TWO OF THE MOST IMPORTANT ISLANDS IN THE ARCHIPELAGOS. COCO CAY HAS OVER 13.5 MILES OF CREAMY, WHITE SAND BEACHES AND GREENISH-BLUE WATERS WHILE GUILLERMO IS MUCH SMALLER WITH BIG SAND DUNES AT PILAR BEACH.  

SANTA LUCIA BEACH AND CAMAGUEY IS A WIDE BEACH OF 13 MILES WITH FINE GOLDEN-WHITE SAND AND TURQUOISE WATERS. THE WATERS ARE ALWAYS CALM HERE BECAUSE OF THE PROTECTIVE CORAL REEF THAT IS REAL CLOSE TO THE COST. IS THE LONGEST REEF IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE. THERE ARE MANY SUNKEN SHIPS IN THE AREA, SOME FROM THE 19TH CENTURY. ROSEATE FLAMINGOS CAN ALSO BEEN SEEN AT EL REAL LAKE.

HOLGUIN HAS UNSPOILED NATURE AND RICH CULTURE WITH PLACES OF HISTORIC INTEREST. IT IS ALSO KNOWN AS “THE CITY OF PARKS”. THE NARANJA BAY NATURAL PARK HAS INCREDIBLE BLUE SEA AND MANGROVE FORESTS. THERE’S AN AQUARIUM WITH DOLPHINS AND SEA LIONS THAT YOU CAN SWIM WITH THEM IF YOU WANT TO! THE FAMOUS BEACH ESMERALDA IS ALSO IN HOLGUIN. ENJOY THE HILL OF THE CROSS, THE MARQUETA SQUARE, THE MUNICIPAL MUSEUM KNOWN AS PERIQUERA. VISIT THE NEARBY LOOK-OUT POINT WHERE YOU CAN SEE THE MAYABE VALLEY. HOLGUIN IS ONE OF THE AREAS OF CUBA THAT IS SERVED BY AN AIRPORT, SO THE TRANSPORTATION WILL NOT BE A PROBLEM.

IN SANTA CLARA IS WHERE YOU WILL FIND THE ERNESTO GUEVARA’S MONUMENT. IS A HUGE MONUMENT DEDICATED TO THE VERY BELOVED BY THE CUBANS, ARGENTINEAN FIGHTER FOR THE FREEDOM OF THE ISLAND, CHE GUEVARA.





SANTIAGO DE CUBA IS THE 2ND MOST IMPORTANT CITY IN CUBA. IT WAS FOUNDED IN 1515 AND IT HAS A PARTICULAR RICH HISTORY. IT WAS ALSO THE CAPITAL OF THE ISLAND FOR A SHORT TIME. VISIT THE SAN PEDRO DE LA ROCA DEL MORRO CASTLE WHICH IS A PART OF THE WORLD HERITAGE, EL VOBRE BASILICA, CUBA’S PATRON SAINT, THE 26TH OF JULY MUSEUM, THE SIBONEY FARM AND THE RUINS OF AN OLD FRENCH COFFEE PLANTATION. ABOUT 31 MILES AT THE CITY’S LIMITS IS BACONAO PARK WITH MANY BEACHES AND LAKES AND THERE ARE THE GRAN PIEDRA MOUNTAINS IF YOU PREFER THE MOUNTAINOUS LANDSCAPES.

THE CUBAN CURRENCY IS PESO AND IS NOT TO BE BROUGHT INTO OR TAKEN OUT OF THE COUNTRY. YOU CAN CHANCE MONEY FROM THE BANKS AND AT THE AIRPORT.

 HAVE FUN AND A UNIQUE VACATION IN PEACE AND SAFETY

IN A LAND THAT…


LIVING IS A PARTY…


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PHOTOGRAPHY BY DESPINA.

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