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Paradise in Eastern Cuba

Eastern Cuba, which is full of natural attractions, offers special places like Marea del Portillo beach, a pristine paradise between the Caribbean Sea and the Sierra Maestra Mountain Range, in Granma province.

The region, according to experts, is considered one of the most deserted and unexplored places in Cuba, and is a major destination for nature enthusiasts.

The main characteristics of this site are its fine brown sand and its location in a cove that is protected by the Sierra Maestra Mountain Range and surrounded by coconut and palm trees.

In that environment, the beach is near the Desembarco del Granma (Granma Landing) National Park, which was declared Humankind's Natural Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and the Turquino National Park, which holds Cuba's highest mountain, the Turquino Peak.

The former, along with the Maisí system, also in eastern Cuba, is the largest and best preserved world exponent of marine terrace systems (both emerged and submerged) on calcareous rocks.

Therefore, it is one of the most notable places in the Cuban archipelago, due to both its natural values and having been the scenario of relevant historic and cultural developments in the country.

Sea bottom at Marea del Portillo
Façade of Marea del Portillo Hotel
Room at Marea del Portillo Hotel

In the Desembarco del Granma National Park, practically the entire marine terrace system is totally natural, due to the extreme conditions of the relief, climate and biota, which make it inaccessible by man and other species.

In addition, there are dozens of archeological sites in that region, like Guafe, which consists of a group of ceremonial and funerary caves, and a formerly populated area containing seven sculpted idols of the Antillean deity Atabeira, in the so-called Cueva del Agua (Water Cave).

From the Spanish-colonial period, the Vargas Lighthouse (Cabo Cruz), whose construction started in 1859 by the Corps of Civil Engineers of Public Works is still intact in that region.

Tourists can take horseback excursions, go trekking along ecological trails that lead to the waterfalls in the rivers Cilantro and Las Yaguas, take boat excursions to nearby keys and even practice nautical sports.

One of the most tempting offers is diving in a beautiful coral reef that is very close to the shore, and organizing excursions to two sunken ships in Santiago de Cuba's waters.

One of the ships is the Columbus, the most important ship in Admiral Cervera's Fleet, which is among 17sites to go scuba diving or snorkeling from the Albacora International Diving Center.

In addition, just 500 meters from the beach is Cayo Blanco, a small islet that tourists consider a romantic place and where they can enjoy breathtakingly-beautiful sea bottoms.

Accommodation in the region is available for those who prefer calm and privacy in those remote places, and is complemented by an extrahotel network of gastronomic establishments and nightclubs.

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