Whoever travels eastward within Cuban territory will run into the easternmost region of the island, before reaching the coast of that latitude, with the province of Guantanamo. The capital of the province bears the same name (Americans call it "Gitmo") and is located in the western region, about 85 kilometers from Santiago de Cuba. To get to Havana from this eastern capital, you have to travel about 1000 kilometers by road.
How to get?
The province that houses this capital has a mountainous surface, characteristic that for centuries caused significant isolation from other cities in Cuba. However, its beautiful landscapes attracted many tourists in recent decades and thus the region was gaining access. In honor of its status as provincial capital, the city of Guantanamo is the best connected in this Cuban region, being that the National Highway 1 arrives, as well as the Central Highway of Cuba that pass by the La Yaya Reservoir. Towards the northern sector, it is connected by 571. Finally, along the Caimanera Highway, it reaches Guantanamo Bay, where the famous detention camp and the US naval base are located.
The attractions of Guantanamo
Founded at the end of the 18th century, the name of this capital and of the homonymous province are usually associated with the Guantánamo Bay Naval Base, owned by the United States, and the detention camp, the famous high security prison that also belongs to that country Beyond this direct association, both the province of Guantanamo and its capital have charms to offer visitors.
Natural beauty is one of its high points, mainly its anchorage in the middle of multiple rivers. Strictly speaking, in Aboriginal language the name "Guantanamo" is translated as "land between rivers". It is a city with a population of around 250 thousand inhabitants, whose history can be consulted first hand in the Provincial Museum, where a tour of the past of Guantanamo is proposed. It is also advised to visit the parish Santa Catalina de Riccis. The city also has a zoo located near Marti Park. There is also a University of Medicine in it, west of the capital.
Santa Catalina de Riccis, Cuba
Those who are looking for nightlife in Guantanamo should make their feet in Pedro A. Pérez Street, the epicenter of this city, also during the hours in which the moon rules.
The hotel offer in the city of Guantanamo is reduced to 4 relevant alternatives. The Martí Hotel, the Guantánamo, Villa La Lupe and Villa Santa María, the last two farthest from the urban center and in this sense, they release anchors in spaces surrounded by nature.
When it comes to eating and having fun it is recommended to arrive at the José Martí Park, which is also known as the Central Park. In the surroundings there are restaurants and cafes, such as Venus and Bakery among the former, and Juguera Boulevard among the latter. In the mentioned zoo of the city there is also a good option to eat, in Bodegón el León de Oriente, a beautiful colonial-style local that stands out for offering Cuban cuisine in addition to a full menu of cocktails and drinks.