At the far eastern tip of Cuba lies the province of Guantanamo. Unfortunately most people hear Guantanamo and automatically associate it with the United States naval base that has been stationed here since the early 1900s. In truth, there is much more to this province to attract visitors. The colonial seaside city of Baracoa, the oldest city in Cuba, is not to be missed. The architecture and atmosphere here are a welcome treat for visitors. For the more adventurous, the mountains, beaches, and caves of Guantanamo provide a natural playground. Guantanamo has a diverse landscape from desert coast to lush mountains. The northern portion of the province is very wet and green, while the southern area is dry, with cactus and very little vegetation. There is certainly something in this province to please anyone.
Guantanamo came into existence in the early 19th Century when French immigrants from Haiti began arriving here following the slave rebellion. Consequently the culture here is somewhat different from other areas of the country. This is also reflected in the architecture which is has more of a French influence than Spanish. The original town founded here was called Santa Catalina del Saltadero del Guaso but was changed in 1843 to Guantanamo.
Some of the main highlights in the city are the Plaza Marti, the Plaza de la Revolucion, the Museo Municipal, and the Casa Natal de Regino Boti.