Discover the magic of Cuba's Cities

Published on 2024-04-15 by Ada Del Rio Adames

Cuba's cities are the perfect mix of incredible music, warm and cheerful people, Spanish colonial architecture surrounded by cars of the decade, spectacular contrast of colors, which are part of the local lifestyle. Get to know the vibrant essence and rich history of Cuba's cities. From charming cobblestone streets to iconic historic buildings, every corner invites you to explore, enjoy and immerse yourself in Cuban culture. We suggest you to walk its streets, merge with its people and be part of its life because the charm of the city is in its streets surrounded by art and music, this is the best reason to know Cuba. Each city in Cuba has its own history, unique charm, its own magic and its own personality contributing to Cuba's cultural and architectural diversity. From the colonial elegance of Havana to the tranquil charm of Trinidad, come and discover why Cuba's cities make every visitor fall in love with their warm Caribbean embrace!

What are these cities waiting to be revealed?

Havana - City of Contrasts:

Be captivated by Havana's unique atmosphere, where colonial elegance blends with modern energy. Explore the old town of Old Havana, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and soak up the sea breeze on the Malecon, the Paseo del Prado with its bars and nightclubs, full of good vibes. Discover the passion for music and dance in the salsa clubs and traditional bars, and let yourself be seduced by the vitality of this beautiful and exciting city. Soak up the historical, cultural and architectural magic of Havana is an experience.

Trinidad - Colonial Treasure:

Delve into the charm of Trinidad, where cobblestone streets and colorful facades transport you to a bygone era. Explore the cobblestone squares, historic museums and local artisans' workshops. Enjoy the warmth of its people and let yourself be enveloped by the calm and cozy atmosphere of this colonial jewel.

Santiago de Cuba - Cradle of Son:

Immerse yourself in the rich musical and cultural heritage of Santiago de Cuba, the cradle of son and Afro-Cuban tradition. Discover the vibrant music scene in the city's clubs and streets, and explore the fortress of Morro Castle. Learn about history at the Santa Ifigenia Cemetery and admire the majesty of the colonial architecture.

Cienfuegos - Pearl of the South:

Known as the "Pearl of the South", Cienfuegos is a coastal city with impressive architecture and an elegant atmosphere. Its historic center was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO due to its exceptional neoclassical urbanism.

Cienfuegos has beautiful parks, tree-lined boulevards, small palaces and historic buildings that reflect its past splendor.

Bayamo - cradle of Cuban nationality:

It is a historic and culturally rich city, known for being the cradle of Cuban nationality. It was in this city that Cuba's national anthem was first sung, making it a place of great historical importance. Bayamo offers charming squares, colonial churches and museums that tell the story of Cuban history and identity.

Matanzas - Athens of Cuba:

Known as the " Athens of Cuba ", Matanzas is renowned for its rich cultural and artistic scene. The city is surrounded by rivers, bays and beaches, giving it a unique and beautiful natural environment. Matanzas is famous for its colonial architecture, historic bridges and the Yumurí Valley, which offers breathtaking views.

Baracoa - the First City of Cuba:

Baracoa is a coastal city located on the eastern end of Cuba, known for its lush natural beauty and pristine beaches. It was the first city founded in Cuba and has a rich and varied history.

Baracoa is an ideal destination for nature lovers, with national parks, rivers, mountains and rich local culture.

Santa Clara - City of Che:

Known as the "City of Che", Santa Clara is an important cultural and historical center in Cuba. It is famous for being the place where Ernesto "Che" Guevara led the Battle of Santa Clara during the Cuban Revolution. The city is home to the Che Guevara monument, the mausoleum where his remains rest, and other emblematic sites related to revolutionary history.

Camagüey, the city of the Tinajones:

Camagüey is one of Cuba's oldest cities and its historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Known for its maze of narrow streets and charming squares, the city offers unique colonial architecture and a tranquil atmosphere. Camagüey is also renowned for its art, culture and folkloric traditions, being an important artistic center in Cuba.

Holguín - the City of Parks:

Holguín is a city located in the eastern region of Cuba, known for its hospitality and natural beauty. The city also offers charming colonial architecture, lush parks and a rich cultural life.  It is famous for its pristine beaches, such as Guardalavaca, one of the most beautiful on the island.

Pinar del Río - the Tobacco Capital:

Located in Cuba's western region, Pinar del Río is known for being the heart of the tobacco-growing region. The city offers a breathtaking landscape of hummocks, valleys and tobacco plantations, which make up the famous Viñales region. Pinar del Río is an ideal destination for nature lovers, tobacco enthusiasts and those looking to explore authentic Cuban life.

Other recommended cities that offer cultural and natural diversity:

  • Sancti Spíritus, Remedios, ......

How many Heritage Cities in Cuba do you know?

Cuba has a rich colonial history dating back to the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century. The first towns founded in Cuba are:

Baracoa: Founded in 1511 by Spanish conquistador Diego Velázquez, Baracoa is considered one of the first cities founded in Cuba. It is located in the province of Guantánamo, on the eastern end of the island.

Bayamo: Founded in 1513, Bayamo is a city with a lot of history, culture and traditions whose identity element is the car. It is located in the eastern region of Cuba.  

Trinidad: Founded in 1514. Trinidad is one of the best preserved colonial cities in Cuba. Located in the central region, Trinidad is known for its Spanish colonial architecture and cobblestone streets.

Camagüey: Founded in 1514 and also known as the city of the clay pits, it is the third largest Cuban city on the island of Cuba and is characterized by its unique urban layout, with narrow and labyrinthine streets.

Santiago de Cuba: Founded in 1515, Santiago de Cuba is one of the first cities and one of the main urban centers being the capital of Cuba until 1556 and played a key role in colonial history and the fight for independence.

San Cristobal de La Habana: Founded in 1519, Havana is the capital of Cuba and one of the oldest cities in the Americas. Its historic center, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, preserves a rich architectural and cultural heritage.


These cities are recognized as National Monuments, and several of them are inscribed on the World Heritage List.

  • Old City of Havana and its system of Fortifications (1982)
  • Trinidad and Valle de los Ingenios (1988)
  • San Pedro de la Roca Castle in Santiago de Cuba (1997)
  • Historic Urban Center of Cienfuegos (2005)
  • Historic Center of Camagüey (2008)

"Cuba is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world".

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