Most famous because of the US Naval Base, which is about 25 km driving
from Guantanamo city
Guantanamo the easternmost province of the country. Its provincial capital, of the same name, is associated geographically with an enormous purse-shaped bay, one of whose shores is occupied against the will of the Cuban people by a US Navel Base, an offense to Cuba's national sovereignty.
From Malones lookout point, on the top of a hill, you can see the installations of the US Government's traditional policy of interference in and hostility toward Cuba.
Most beautiful part of Guantanamo Province is Baracoa about 3 hours driving trough the "La Farola" route, driving along the Guanatanamo coastline viewing the most dry landscape of Cuba, through the mountains (the wettest part of Cuba) to Baracoa ... a breath taking experience.
of stone live in Cuban peasant's zoo
Another site of interest in the area, near Yateras, is a "zoo"
whose animals have been sculpted out of stone. Here, farmer-sculpter
Angel Inigo Blanco has sculpted 300 life-sized animals from
all continents out of large rocks that are scattered through
Cuba (CNN) -- Angel Inigo Blanco went for a walk near his
home 20 years ago, and had an idea that many people would
have dropped immediately.
were no zoos in eastern Cuba, and it occurred to him that
he could create one by carving animals from the huge chunks
of limestone that abounded in the midst of a lush, semi-tropical
jungle. He returned the next day and began work on a lion.
It wasn't easy, and he nearly gave up.
came one day and worked and said, 'I'm not coming back,'"
he says. "It's very difficult work." But
he did come back, day after day for 20 years, and now he has
a collection of 360 stone animals and birds ranging from gorillas
by a fence and a sagging iron gate, Blanco's zoo is home to
elephants, lions, rhinoceroses, panthers, crocodiles and buffalo.
There is a gorilla with a quizzical look on its face as it
fights off several stone lions. There is a bear hunkering
in the midst of extravagant green foliage.
There are humans in Blanco's zoo, too There
is a horned mountain goat and two other creatures with big
ears and no horns and the same, over-caffeinated look in their
eyes. They may also be goats. Then, again, they may not. A
lion lurking behind a stand of bright orange lilies has the
same quizzical expression as the gorilla while, nearby, waves
of fat ripple across the back of a hippopotamus in profile.
There are chickens, rats and donkeys, some of them hiding
amidst the greenery. There are even humans in Blanco's zoo.
"The sculpture which took me the longest was the Indian
village," he says. "I worked on that for seven months.
now, 20 years into his opus, Blanco uses only a hammer, a
lever and a file, and he says the work is still difficult.
"Sculpting is hard work," he says, "whether
you're working with mud or wood."
always be a peasant' As
sculpture goes, Blanco's work has a simple, almost childlike
quality similar to a style of painting known as "primitive."
Blanco's, however, is neither so deliberate nor so philosophical.
He does what he can, and while it will never be confused with
great art, he is proud of it.
"I'll always be a peasant," he says.
One of his children works with him. He will inherit his father's
stone legacy and, perhaps, the dream as well.
The territory has
deep-rooted musical and dance traditions that were also influenced
by the Franco Haitian immigrantswho flocked to the area after
the 1791 Haitian Revolution. The most famous Cuban song ever
written "Guantanamera" or "Girl from Guantanamo",
by Joseito Fernandez pays tribute to this province. World-renowed
musicians have played and sung this catchy melody all over the
Such musical genres as the
'changui' (a country dance) and 'kiriba' are exclusive to
Guantanamo, a predominantly mountainous area with thick woods
which, in past centuries, made it one of the areas in Cuba
with the most runaway slave settlements.