5 Sensational Sites in Santiago de Cuba


Situated on the south-eastern portion of Cuba, Santiago de Cuba, the island’s second largest city and original capital, has a rich cultural history worth exploring. The journey through the city and to these five locations will give you new perspective.

Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca

The Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca, also known as Castillo del Morro, utilizes Italian and Renaissance design principles and remains the best-preserved example of Spanish-American military architecture, which has earned it a spot on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Giovanni Battista Antonelli designed the fortress to protect the city against invading pirates.

Santa Ifigenia Cemetery

Fidel Castro died on November 25, 2016 and after the cremation of his ashes on the following day, a funeral procession travelled 900 kilometres to Santiago de Cuba, where after 9 days of public mourning his ashes were entombed in the Santa Ifigenia Cemetery. The cemetery opened in 1868 and also is the final resting place of national hero José Martí as well as Emilio Bacardi. Notably, Fidel Castro launched his revolutionary movement in Santiago de Cuba.

Balcón de Velázquez

Great views of the city can be found at the corner of Bartolomé Masó & Mariano Corona on the Balcón de Velázquez.

Basílica Santuario Nacional de Nuestra Señora de la Caridad del Cobre

The National Shrine Basilica of Our Lady of Charity, a Roman Catholic minor basilica dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary built in 1926 situated on a lushly forested hill will take your breath away.

Baconao Park

Nothing short of magnificent and a UNESCO World Heritage Biosphere Reserve, Baconao Park offers a wide variety of attractions including the Great Rock (Gran Piedra), prehistoric valley, farms, botanical gardens, the Museum of History of Terrestrial Transportation, an aquarium, Baconao lagoon, and much more. The 60 kilometer drive from Santiago de Cuba to the park is a must.

In Santiago de Cuba you’ll experience beautiful views of the city, the water, and nature as well as gain a greater understanding of life in Cuba.

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Author: Max Bornstein
Based in Miami, Florida, Max Bornstein extensively explores the globe developing a wealth of cultural knowledge. He began traveling at a young age and has visited over fifty countries and sailed on over forty cruises. Currently, Max utilizes his Master of International Business as Realtor and simultaneously writes about his travels.