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Gibara: Two Centuries of History

The city of Gibara, also known as the White Village, builds in its favor a history of two centuries that gives it the necessary approval to gain spaces in the preference of domestic and foreign visitors.

Located on the north coast of the eastern Cuban province of Holguín, its name comes from the aboriginal word Jibá, with a rich history and culture of its own line of descent, accompanied by a beautiful and lush landscape.

In its surroundings, the city makes available to visitors and local inhabitants the contrast of its architectural heritage with the surroundings, in addition to being Gibara one of the first points appreciated by Admiral Christopher Columbus when sighting Cuban land.

It should be mentioned that on January 16th, 1817, under a solemn ceremony, the first stone of the fortification was placed at Punta de Yarey, on the shores of the Bay, a date that has always been considered as the date of foundation of the locality.

The town boasts among its most valuable architectural monuments the Battery Fernando VII, colonial exponent of what was the second most walled city on the island.

The foundation of the port favored its economic splendor, which turned the city into the second walled city of Cuba, because it became necessary to build military fortifications for the protection of the town from the attacks of privateers and pirates.

Punta Lucrecia`s Lighthouse
Countryside landscape in Banes
Silla de Gibara

In 1853 was inaugurated the Parochial Church of San Fulgencio, which sets, according to criteria of some experts, a milestone in the predominant architectural styles in Gibara until that moment.

For the experts, its architecture combines the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, with important exponents of each.

In addition, its historical center preserves more than 50 percent of the heritage in good condition, reason why in 2003 it was declared National Monument.

The city has a main park, named "Calixto Garcia Iñiguez" and the old Plaza de Armas of the town, in the center of which is a miniature replica of the Statue of Liberty, which was obtained through popular fundraising and Commissioned to Italian sculptors.

This piece is dedicated to the entrance, on July 25,1898, of the independence troops lead by Colonel Cornelio Rojas, symbolizing the liberation of the Spanish domination.

The Mothers' Park and the Plaza de la Cultura can be tagged as remarkable sites, along with exponents of the architectural complex that distinguish the town, such as the Museum of Decorative Arts, located on the top floor of one of the most significant domestic constructions of the neoclassical style of the locality.

The institution has one of the most important collections of its kind in the country and treasures the largest stained-glass windows of Eastern Cuba, in addition to The Parish Church and the Old Seat of the Spanish Casino.

Very close to the city is Bariay, the point where Columbus landed on October 27, 1492, turned into a symbol of the encounter between the cultures of the Old and New World with a sculptural ensemble nestled in a beautiful natural environment.

For beach lovers, Gibara complements its attractions with the so-called Los Caletones and Los Bajos, the latter with ferry access.

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