Cuba is an island of 11 million inhabitants, 70% in urban areas and 30% in rural areas. Havana is the largest city with over 2 million residents, followed by Santiago de Cuba on the opposite corner of the island. Cuba is 42,802 square miles, bigger than Tennessee, smaller than Kentucky. In comparison, Colorado is 104,185 square miles.
Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean Sea. Cuba and its neighbors form the Greater Antilles, a chain of islands created millions of years ago when two of Earth’s tectonic plates collided (not volcanic). It’s closest neighbor is Haiti.
Cuba is a long and narrow island. It stretches 750 miles (1,200 kilometers) from east to west, but is only 60 miles (100 kilometers) wide in most places.
High mountains and rolling hills cover about one-third of Cuba. The other two-thirds of the island are lowland plains used mainly for farming.
Cuba has many different habitats, from mountain forests to jungles and grasslands. There are even small deserts. These different ecosystems are home to unique plants and animals found only in Cuba. The most famous is the bee hummingbird, the world’s smallest bird. Adult bee hummingbirds grow to only two inches (five centimeters) long. The national bird is the Tocororo (Cuban Trogon) is not to be missed with is brilliant red, white and blue coloring.
Sugar, petroleum, tobacco, construction, nickel, steel, cement, agricultural machinery, and pharmaceuticals are all primary exports.
Sugar, tobacco, citrus and tropical fruits, coffee, rice, beans, meat, vegetables.
Despite the tumultuous relationship between the U.S. and Cuba sinc ethe late 1950’s, Cubans are very welcoming to Americans. Tourism consistently ranks in the top economic indicators for Cuba, and in 2018 Canadians only out-paced Americans by visits to Cuba. Most Cubans have a close relative that is living in the U.S., and you can expect a warm welcome when you tell people you are an American.
Although the thought of Cuba being communist can intimidate travelers, the reality is that if you are a law-abiding visitor to the country, you’ll enjoy the benefits. Cuba is extremely safe for travelers, petty theft is uncommon and more than anything you want to beware of “jinoteros”, or scammers working the streets. When you are traveling with your guide these people will steer clear of you.
This is an amazing place of vibrant music, dance, art, architecture and nature. Welcome!