An environment-friendly holiday in Cuba
Cuba is one of the most attractive and precious countries in the Caribbean region. It is characterized by spectacular landscapes, fine beaches and historical towns. Among the several forms of tourism that can be practiced here, ecotourism is a very popular one nowadays. While most people who travel to Cuba stay in all-inclusive resorts, you can choose to practice some forms of ecotourism. It has shown to be compelling enough to draw visitors. It seems that recently green tourism and ecotourism in Cuba had grown considerably. Authorities made efforts for conservation and preservation within the country. Cuba owns a great diversity of natural heritage, thus it is not surprising that ecotourism is increasing here. I guarantee, you won’t be disappointed after an environment-friendly holiday spent in Cuba.
Pinar del Rio
Nicknamed “the Princess of Cuba”, Pinar del Rio is probably the major region of ecotourism in Cuba. Pinar del Rio is home to two UNESCO biospheres. The first sustainable eco-resort of Cuba, Las Terrazas, was also developed here. It is located in the Biosphere Reserve Sierra del Rosario. The project which was initiated in the 1960’s, combines sustainable development and tourism. Spending a day in the mountainous area of high natural and historic values of Las Terrazas is a memorable experience. Visitors have the occasion to experience hikes, walking tours, canopy tours, cultural excursions and visit the coffee plantations. Birdwatching and ecotourism excursions are also very popular here.
The well-known swamp, Cienaga de Zapata situated on the peninsula of Zapata is famous for its indigenous crocodiles. The swamp is considered the best preserved wetland in Cuba. Within the Zapata Swamp are several areas designated for environmental preservation, such as Zapata Swamp Natural Reserve and Las Salinas wildlife sanctuary. There are over are over 900 plant species, 175 species of birds, 31 species of reptiles and over 1000 species of invertebrates living here.
Another spectacular option for ecotourism is Sierra Maestra which is the largest mountain range in Cuba. The Sierra Maestra Mountains in the southeast of the island not only have the highest peaks in Cuba, but also provide spectacular flora and fauna, including an immense diversity of colorful birds. Visitors have the occasion to make great trekking tours in the area, birdwatching being a very popular activity here. The Gran Parque Nacional Sierra Maestra is a spectacular national park found amongst the Sierra Maestra Mountains. You can make walking and hiking tours here, admiring the peaceful nature.
If you prefer the beaches instead of the mountainous area, Cayo Levisa is the perfect choice! Situated about 52 km from the Vinales Valley, off the northwest coast of Cuba, the tiny island enveloped by thick jungle of tropical mangrove is bordered by gorgeous white beaches. The island is accessible only by a twice daily boat from the mainland. The bungalows here are simple and built with local materials, according to green tourism concepts. The atmosphere is peaceful and pleasant. The island isn’t crowded at all, being the perfect place to relax and enjoy the virgin nature.