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To the Rescue of Cuba's Heritage

The Cuban archipelago, full of traditional sun and beach attractions, complements its tourism option with an extraordinary cultural and historic heritage throughout the country.

The first villages founded by the Spaniards in Cuba stand out in this scenario, including the Villa de la Santisima Trinidad, which is a living example of the early traditions to the delight of national and foreign holidaymakers.

In fact, it has one of the most complete and best-preserved architectural complexes in the Americas, with the famous Valle de los Ingenios (Sugar Mills' Valley) and the emblematic Iznaga Tower standing out.

Certified as Humankind's Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), together with the historic center of the city, the valley holds dozens of ruins of sugar mills, summer houses, barracks and other facilities linked to sugar production.

Considered a living museum of sugar production in Cuba, the valley possesses a monumental industrial architecture due to its size and wealth of materials, coupled with unique examples of domestic constructions, known as sugar mill haciendas, some of which have been preserved until today.

Among the best-preserved exponents are the Manaca-Iznaga, Buena Vista, Delicias, Guaimaro and Magua sugar mills haciendas, which are examples of the codes of neoclassical architecture.

Iznagas's house, "Ingenios's" Valley.
Iznagas's house, "Ingenios's" Valley.
Iznaga Tower. Trinidad.

The rescue of the haciendas includes points of tourist and cultural interest, such as the Guaimaro, Buena Vista, La Pastora, San Isidro, Delicias, Magua, Guinía de Soto, Algaba, Manacas, Guhachinango, Hacienda del Abanico and the towns of San Pedro and Condado.

San Isidro de los Desfiladeros was one of the most prestigious of more than 60 sugar plantations in the Valle de los Ingenios.

It was built in the 18th century, when it was nothing more than the sugar mill baptized as San Juan Nepomuceno and was owned by Alejo Maria del Carmen Iznaga y Borrell. The owner was a Catalonian who arrived in Cuba with the hope of making a fortune, a purpose he fulfilled.

Then, the owner renamed the mill after his patron saint of agriculture in Spain: San Isidro de los Desfiladeros.

Later, he sold the property to Jose del Rey Alvarez, who took advantage of the steam engine and the increase in slaves to transform San Isidro into one of the ten most productive sugar mills in the valley.

Next to this structure, there are elements of a hydraulic system reminiscent of the European aqueducts, built with thick walls and buttresses of stonework, all with the purpose of carrying the water necessary for the development of the sugar production process.

This way, the colonial houses, the remains of mills and a city of Trinidad, also known as the Museum City of Cuba, are integrated into an option that is difficult to ignore by thousands of visitors who visit the Caribbean island.

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