Holguin, Cuba: From the Sea to the Mountains

airtransat By airtransat / 23 June 2015

Holguin, Cuba: From the Sea to the Mountains

airtransat By airtransat

The sandy beaches, turquoise waters and mountains covered in tropical forest inspired the famous explorer to name this country “the most beautiful land that human eyes have ever seen”. Half a millennium later, the same idyllic landscape unfurls before our eyes at Cayo Saetia Island, near Holguin, Cuba. Once our feet have dried, we hop into a jeep and head toward a savannah-like landscape. In a happy turn of events, Cayo Saetia, once a famous hunting ground, has been turned into a wildlife preserve. Today, safaris in this part of the world are all about cameras and binoculars. Advancing carefully over the road, we suddenly glimpse a herd of antelopes parting the yellow grass as they bound toward a forested refuge. Soon zebras, some dromedaries, ostriches, wild boar, water buffalo and a lone giraffe all make an appearance only metres from the jeep: a little bit of Africa in Cuba.

Docks by the water in Holguin, Cuba

 

After this, the call of the wild comes in little puffs of dry, cool air from the heights of the Sierra Cristal. Then, we set off on the road to the villages of Mayari and Cueto, near Biran, birthplace of Fidel and Raul Castro. The asphalt gives way to iron-reddened earth, and nature asserts its primacy at the edges of the road. In sight of Salto de Guayabo, Cuba’s highest waterfalls, the purple flowers of banana trees, pink hearts of pineapple plants and blood-red poinsettias grace the path that brings us to the falls nestled between two jungle-covered cliffs. The air is no longer either dry or cool, yet nature in Cuba is kind; the waterfall retains some of its fresh water in a pool, the perfect place to bring our temperature down and sample some freshly squeezed passion fruit juice. In an effort to stay cool, we head further up the mountain, toward the pine forest. It’s time to park the car, pull on some hiking boots or get on a horse. Bathed in the scent of the evergreens, the footpaths lead into a hike with an oddly Nordic feel. Until, that is, the view reveals the lush, tropical valleys of the Sierra Cristal. It’s our turn to fall in love. We take a deep breath, and dive down once again toward the sea. Slowly.

Find flight information and more great tips for travelling to Holguin, Cuba here.

The comments and contributions expressed are assumed only by the author. The recommendations, intentions or opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Transat AT Inc. or its affiliates. See terms of use of the Air Transat website.

You might also like

Arts and culture Discoveries Food and Drink

5 reasons to spend a long weekend in Toronto

By Catherine Maisonneuve

Often described as the New York of Canada, Toronto is a vast multicultural metropolis that has been primarily known as a major business destination. But...

#Artsandculture, #Canada, #Discoveries, #FoodAndDrink, #NorthAmerica

On board Tips and tricks

Travelling in the age of COVID-19: Eight tips to enjoy your trip safely and with ease

It’s no secret that COVID-19 has changed the way we travel. Indeed, the various players in the tourism industry, from airlines to hotels...

#Onboard, #TipsandTricks, #Trucsetastuces

Discoveries

12 Most Beautiful UNESCO Sites in Europe

By Marie-Eve Vallieres

As the birthplace of many great civilisations and as the continent that colonised the New World and beyond, it goes without saying that Europe is...

#Belgium, #Croatia, #CzechRepublic, #Discoveries, #England, #Europe, #France, #Greece, #Hungary, #Ireland, #Italy, #Netherlands, #Spain

Arts and culture Discoveries

7 Things You May Not Know About the Pyramids of the World

By Marie-Julie Gagnon

It's not only in Egypt that pyramids spark curiosity. In Latin America, these mysterious constructions attract travellers from around the world. Here are some...

#Artsandculture, #Artsetculture, #Discoveries, #Mexico, #South

Activities Tips and tricks

Picture This: Tips on Snapping Amazing Vacation Photos

Our photographer reveals tips on snapping amazing vacation photos. Find the light The best times to catch good light is just after sunrise and before...

#Atmosphere, #TipsandTricks

Trending

Quiz: What Type of Traveller Are You?

Canadians listen to them every morning on the hit radio show The Roz & Mocha Show. But you know what they say: you don’t...

#Atmosphere, #Trending