Geography & Relief
Cuba or Liberty Island is considered the Pearl of the Caribbean and a paradise for any tourist. Here you will find everything for a luxurious holiday: white sand, warm and crystal clear waters of the Caribbean Sea, the rich underwater world, the longest coral barrier, comfortable “all inclusive” hotels and, of course, cheerful and hospitable locals.
Cuba is one of the largest islands in the world. Its area is 110,992 sq. km. If you get a bird’s-eye view of the island, you can see that its shape resembles a crocodile. The capital of Cuba is a beautiful city of Havana. The most famous resorts are Cayo Coco, Cayo Guillermo, Cayo Largo, Holguin and Santiago de Cuba. Varadero is considered to be the most popular tourist beach.
Due to the valleys, hills and mountains Cuba can boasts diverse and fascinating landscapes. Though most of the island is fertile plains, there are also quite high mountains. The peak of Turin is the highest point in Cuba. Its height is 2005 meters.
In addition to the Caribbean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico and several straits, there are many rivers in Cuba that flow down from the mountains and form picturesque waterfalls. The Cauto River or Rio Cauto is the longest river in Cuba.
Subtropical climate prevails in Cuba. Annual temperature of air is maintained at 77-82 °F. The water temperature is 72-77 °F. Liberty Island is an ideal place for holidays all the year round. However, remember that you may be at risk of catching the rainy season in May and November.
Flora & Fauna
Flora of Cuba is very varied. The island has about 300 nature reserves, some of which are protected by UNESCO. Therefore, Cuba is the best place on Earth for eco-tourism. The most interesting instances of the vegetation of Cuba are: Royal Palm trees, cacti, orchids.
Fauna of Cuba is not as rich as flora. The most common animals here are amphibians and reptiles. The Cuban crocodile is the rarest of them. However, Cuba is home to many species of birds, 20 of which could not be found anywhere in the world: the Bee Hummingbird, the Cuban Trogon, Cuban Green Woodpecker and others.
The most widespread religion in Cuba is Catholicism. In addition, the islanders are professing Judaism, Santeria (syncretic religion that prevailed in Cuba), as well as practicing Voodoo and Spiritualism.
Spanish is the official language of the island. But don’t worry if you don’t know this language. Staff of the hotels can answer you in English, French, Italian or German.
Despite the difficult political and economic times, the Cubans managed to keep their true traditions in cooking. Creole cuisine is dominant in Cuba. Popular products on the island are fresh fish, especially cod; meat (chicken and pork); vegetables (sweet potatoes, corn, bananas); beans and various sauces and spices.
If you’re in Cuba, be sure to taste:
- “Chicharrones” – The original Cuban beer snack of thin bacon, fried in boiling oil;
- “Boniato” – The sweet potato that is fried until golden brown;
- “Medallones-Mango” – Slices of pork stewed with diced mango, wine and spices.