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Holguín Travel Guide


"Nowhere have I ever laid eyes upon such a beautiful land", is how Columbus described the unknown country that he once stepped ashore in the province of Holguín on the Bay of Bariay.

What so enchanted the explorer was the more than 40 paradisiacal sandy beaches on which the wind ensnarls itself in the coconut palms that create shade, as well as the crystal-clear sea waters that gently lap the shore.

Natural beauty and a stunning vegetation enrich the region in east Cuba. Idyllic and undisturbed bays such as Playa Esmeralda and Moa or the popular beach resort of Guardalavaca are easy to reach from the provincial capital of Holguín. The fourth largest city in Cuba, Holguín was actually named after a Spanish captain who owned estates here. The heart of the lively resort is Parque Calixto García, in which a magnificent Art Deco theatre and the impressive Museo de Historia Provincial are to be found. Quiet holiday days are best spent in the mid-sized resort of Guardalavaca; its attraction primarily concerns the almost 2 mls long, fine sand beach offering the best selection of bars, cafés, diving and water sports bases. Boasting equally good amenities is the nearby Playa Esmeralda, a bay suitable for bathing, and whose colourful underwater world with magnificent coral gardens invites one to partake in diving and snorkelling. Situated to the east, Moa is the preferred destination of surfers, as it constantly enjoys the most suitable wind conditions.

In Cayo Bariay, visitors are able to follow in the footsteps of Columbus and in the midst of a pine grove close to the bay, there is an impressive monument dedicated to the explorer. The merging of native and Spanish architectural elements is said to symbolise the meeting of the old and new worlds.

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