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Cuba: A Catalog of Traditions

Cuba, a key element in the Caribbean environment, holds a vast historic and cultural heritage accumulated over centuries for both nationals and foreign visitors.

For connoisseurs, the Cuban catalog of traditions includes celebrations such as the parrandas (a sort of carnival), carnivals or guateques (countryside parties), charangas (brass bands) and patron saint festivities.

Among them, the most recognized are the famous Remedios parrandas, in central Cuba, which were declared Cultural Heritage of the Nation.

Other such festivities are the so-called Romerías de Mayo (May Pilgrimages), which are celebrated in the eastern province of Holguín; the carnivals of Havana and Santiago de Cuba, and the Charangas de Bejucal.

This way, Cuba has among its many assets that are considered patrimonial, more than 20 manifestations of art and popular knowledge that constitute the Cultural Heritage of the Nation.

Therefore, traditions such as Tobacco Readings and the Knowledge of the Masters of Rum have been granted that distinction.

Caridad del Cobre Sanctuary. Image of the Virgin
Caridad del Cobre Sanctuary. Entrance
Caridad del Cobre Sanctuary. Façade

Popular celebrations are also inserted in the extensive calendar of offers for tourism, with special weight for the traditional summer carnivals in the capital and eastern Cuba, whose origin dates back to the Spanish colonial period.

In the musical field, peasants' improvisation is considered the Cultural Heritage of the Nation, as well as the son, a musical genre born in Cuba, which has been sung and danced throughout the world; the rumba, an expression of folklore in music and dance; and the danzón.

On the other hand, a dozen places have been declared World Heritage Sites, including the Viñales Valley and the French Tumba, by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), as well as the historic centers of the city of Trinidad and the Valle de los Ingenios (the Sugar Mills' Valley), Old Havana and the city of Cienfuegos, among others.

Cuba has 300 museums of the most varied designs and contents, 14 of which are classified as art museums, seven of science and technology, five of ethnography and anthropology, and 68 of history.

Cuba's cultural calendar also includes several meetings, workshops, festivals, congresses and specialized courses, designed for all tastes and in the most diverse artistic manifestations.

The list includes the annual meeting of Ballet Academies, the festivals La Huella de España, Boleros de Oro, Cubadisco, the Festival of Ibero-American Culture and the international Jazz Plaza Festival, as well as the expected Festival of Fire, link by excellence with the Caribbean and traditionally held in Santiago de Cuba.

All this invites holidaymakers to share a cultural and traditional work that is enriched every year, while providing authenticity, professional rigor and openness.

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