El Cocodilo or El Caina

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

The Republic of Cuba is uniquely located in the Caribbean where the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and Atlantic Ocean meet.  The shape of the island of Cuba resembles a crocodile, hence at times is referred to as “El Cocodilo” or “El Caina.”  Most people are familiar with the capital city of Havana, where just outside the city Ernest Hemingway lived for twenty years. Havana is also the birthplace of Desi Arnaz (Ricky Ricardo) the famous musician and actor who at one time was married to Lucille Ball. The island is filled with several other beautiful cities such as Santa Clara, Cienfuegos, Vinales, Trinidad, Topes, and many others. I will share my experiences in these cities and why they are so magical.

Santa Clara is primarily known for its revolutionary landmarks. In the western part of the city is the museum and mausoleum for Ernesto “Che” Guevara. Che was born in Argentina, but lived in Cuba as a young child and was homeschooled by his mother due to his severe asthma. His family moved back to Buenos Aires, Argentina which proved to help his asthma eventually allowing him to join the classroom setting with the rest of the children. Che went on to earn his doctorate in medicine with a concentration in allergy medicine in Argentina. Che had five children, the oldest child died of a now curable disease, one child lives in the US, and the other three children live in Cuba. Che eventually left Cuba to do work in the Congo and Bolivia. In 1967 he was murdered in Bolivia and his remains were later found and returned back to Cuba in 1997.

Cienfuegos is a city filled with beautiful colonial buildings, which eventually in 2005 led the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to add Cienfuegos to the World Heritage List. The Parque Jose Marti is in the heart of the Plaza de Armas, which is named after the Cuban national hero Jose Marti. The city was at one point was settled by the French, hence the French influence in the town and the commemoration of Cuban independence with the Arco de Triufo. Around the central square you can find shops, a church, the Tomas Terry Theater adorned with gold-leaf mosaics and ceiling frescoes. The theater is currently being restored to its former glory.

Vinales is the gateway to the Sierra de los Organos Mountains and the Vinales Valley. The town is lined with colorful colonial homes and boasts a museum exploring the regions history.  Cueva del Indio (Indian Caves) features a boat ride on the river that runs under a mountain. The experience is reminiscent of the Walt Disney World ride Pirates of the Caribbean minus the pirates. Vinales is where seventy five percent of Cuba’s tobacco is grown. The Macondo Tobacco Plantation still uses oxen and wooden plough today as not to damage the soil. From seed to harvest it is a 15 month process, however, that is only the beginning. Cuba is known for their cigars and take pride in the entire process to deliver a high quality product to its consumers. Due to its mineral rich soil, the region produces a whole host of other agricultural products as well.

Trinidad is a beautiful city known for its colonial buildings and cobble streets. The streets are made of blue cobble stones reminiscent of what you see in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. The sugar trade was the main industry in the region, however, now the town’s main industry is processing tobacco. The Valle de los Ingenios (Valley of the Sugar Mills) is a World Heritage Site and has approximately 70 historic sugar cane mills. Trinidad is known for a popular drink Canchanchara, which is rum, honey, lemon, and ice served in small terra cotta cups. It is said, the Canchanchara drink was created when Cuba was fighting for their independence, but the soldiers did not always have enough food. The drink provided the needed energy to continue on with their fight. The Santander family who have showcased their pottery nationally own Alfarero Casa Chichi were you can purchase beautiful pottery.

Topes des Collantes is a nature park reserve in the Escambray Mountains. We walked 4 kilometers through the Parque Guanayara passing through coffee plantations, traditional farm houses, Caburni Falls, and plenty of flora and fauna. The coffee plantations grow Arabica coffee, which grows well in the climate and conditions of the mountainous area under the shelter of the trees. As you walk through the park you see the fragrant and beautiful Mariposa Blanca (Cuba’s national flower), which means white butterfly. You pass by the African tulip and beautiful purplish flower, guava, bananas, plantains, bamboo, royal palm trees, sugar cane, and countless other sights. The falls are beautiful and the river flows into a pool where you can enjoy a refreshing dip.

There are so many beautiful cities and towns in Cuba and if I had month I still would be able to enjoy all of its beauty. If there are any others who have traveled to any cities outside of Havana, please share your experience.

Visit Ketour Travel’s website (https://ketourtravel.com) read the blogs and updates on current and future trips. Go to https://discover.ketourtravel.com/ to purchase airfare, hotel, transfers, activities and holiday packages. Do not forget to subscribe to the newsletter, follow Ketour on our YouTube channel, Facebook page, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. When making reservations for airfare, hotel rates, transfers, and activities visit https://discover.ketourtravel.com. Check out some of the current promotions going on to save on your travels.

Roseland Hupp

Roseland Hupp

I am Roseland, and I travel, write, and take plenty of photos of different cities and countries I have travelled to around the world. My blog is for everyone who yearns to travel and learn about the diverse countries of the world. Subscribers to this blog will gain unique insight to travel through hands-on interactions rather than a hands-off perspective of a being a foreigner in a new land. Each post will reflect the truth of the locale it represents without any sugar coating added. You can learn more about me here.

Find More Posts

Leave a Reply

28 Responses

    1. It is always interesting the perception you have of a country and its people once you visit and learn more about the culture and history. Cuba is one of those countries I plan to return and visit in the future.

  1. Long time supporter, and thought I’d drop a comment.

    Your wordpress site is very sleek – hope you don’t mind me
    asking what theme you’re using? (and don’t mind if I steal
    it? :P)

    I just launched my site –also built in wordpress like yours– but the theme slows (!) the site down quite a bit.

    In case you have a minute, you can find
    it by searching for “royal cbd” on Google (would appreciate any feedback)
    – it’s still in the works.

    Keep up the good work– and hope you all take care of yourself during the coronavirus scare!

  2. Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing a few months of hard work due to no backup. Do you have any methods to prevent hackers?

  3. It?¦s really a great and useful piece of information. I?¦m satisfied that you just shared this useful information with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Hello there, just became aware of your blog through Google, and found that it is truly informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I will appreciate if you continue this in future. Lots of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  5. I just want to tell you that I’m new to blogging and absolutely liked your web site. Very likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog . You surely have remarkable stories. Regards for sharing with us your web page.

  6. I know this web page provides quality based content and other
    stuff, is there any other web page which provides these kinds of
    stuff in quality?

    1. There are several sites out there writing about various topics. They are out there you will to query specific topics your interested in and start reading to determine if you like their style of writing.

    1. I am glad this site is of use to you. I have travelled to some beautiful places and want others to learn more about these places as well. Whether that is through my blog or through travelling there yourself.

  7. Hi there everyone, it’s my first pay a quick visit at this web site, and article is really fruitful in favor of me,
    keep up posting these types of articles.

  8. Magnificent goods from you, man. I have bear in mind your stuff prior to and you are simply
    too wonderful. I really like what you’ve acquired here, really like what you are saying and the
    way in which in which you say it. You’re making it enjoyable and you still
    care for to stay it smart. I can not wait to
    learn much more from you. That is really a tremendlus website.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up for our Newsletter

Keep up to date with the latest travel tips and stories.