Las Terrazas Community was founded on February 28, 1971 and is the sustenance of tourism through the Las Terrazas Complex, which is located in the Sierra del Rosario Biosphere Reserve. With the introduction in the area of tourist activity since 1994, the conservation of the built heritage and the insertion of new infrastructures with similar characteristics to those existing are guaranteed.
Las Terrazas is considered the first Eco-Museum of Cuba, national and international reference for other development areas with similar characteristics. It also holds the Conservation Prize awarded by UNESCO and currently has the category of Cultural Landscape. The inhabitants have facilities that unquestionably lead to an increase in their quality of life, constituting one of the fundamental premises of the Sustainable Rural Development model. In Las Terrazas there are about 1014 people grouped in 253 family nuclei. The life expectancy of its inhabitants is 79 years and infant mortality has been zero in the last 10 years. The 45% of the economically active population work in tourism.
In addition, they carry out activities with children and young people of Las Terrazas Community: circles of interest on the environment, which talks about birds, educational talks, workshops, participation contests, and the long-awaited celebration for the World Environment Day, among others, thus raising the environmental education of its inhabitants in order to achieve sustainable development in the region.
The Sierra del Rosario is one of the main destinations of nature tourism in Cuba, is located 65 km (about 40 miles) west of the city of Havana with magnificent connection through the highway Havana-Pinar del Rio. It shows a mountainous environment with heights of up to 500-600 meters above sea level declared a biosphere reserve. The natural and cultural attractions are combined in this region in a harmonious way, being the town of Las Terrazas the place where You can see a sustainable human nature interaction in Cuba.
There is an exuberant nature with a rich vegetation and avifauna - perfect place for lovers of photo hunting and bird watching - with beautiful landscapes, rivers of crystal clear waters that resemble natural swimming pools such as the San Juan River Baths and those of the Cañada del Infierno. You can enjoy cultural elements represented by ruins of French coffee plantations established in that territory in the late 18th century and the early 19th century. There is all the infrastructure to facilitate the visit.
It has accommodation and food infrastructure, you can, for example, enjoy a tasty local lunch at Casa del Campesino. There are also established trails to get to know the most popular places, they also provide guide service. There are also many other options for the lovers of new adventures and experiences. This is a paradise for nature lovers and for those who want to enjoy some days in a peaceful and beautiful environment.
Soroa is located a few kilometers west of Las Terrazas, in the municipality of Candelaria, in the same mountainous area and with a very similar natural environment also part of the Sierra del Rosario Biosphere Reserve. It is a small complex with accommodation facilities and several restaurants and where outstands an orchid garden with more than 700 species of orchids. It is used as a research and exhibition center and visitors are allowed.
Nature tourism and hiking have its own small paradise here-there are more than 800 plant species and more than 73 bird species-you can enjoy several trails of which the most interesting are "The green route of the French coffee plantations" and "Green Trail El Mogote-Poza del Amor”. There are several natural swimming pools in the Bayate and Manantiales rivers, with shallow depth and crystal clear waters, they are perfect to enjoy a pleasant bath, besides there is the emblematic Salto de Soroa (Soroa Falls).
It also offers mineral-medicinal baths in thermal waters and near there are the ruins of coffee plantations Independencia, La Esperanza and La Merced, established by French settlers who escaped from Haiti following the Haitian revolution.
The Soroa Orchid Garden is a National Heritage and is located in the Candelaria municipality, of the newly created province of Artemisa. It is a productive scientific center at the University of Pinar del Rio and is intended for the preservation and enjoyment of the environment and the conservation of Cuban orchids.