Parque Natural Majayara

sights / Parks & gardens

Lonely Planet review

Southeast of town in the Parque Natural Majayara are a couple of magical hikes , plus swimming and an archaeological trail in the grounds of a lush family farm. It's all a very low-key, laid-back diversion. Passing the Fuerte Matachín, hike southeast past the baseball stadium and along the dark-sand beach for 20 minutes to the Río Miel, where eager volunteers can row you across for CUC$1.

On the other side, bear left following a track up through a cluster of rustic houses to another junction. A guard-post here is sometimes staffed by an official who will collect CUC$2. Turn left again and continue along the vehicle track until the houses clear and you see a fainter single-track path leading off left to Playa Blanca , an idyllic spot for a picnic.

Staying straight on the track, you'll come to a trio of wooden homesteads. The third of these houses belongs to the Fuentes family. Do not continue alone past this point as you are entering a military zone. For a donation, Señor Fuentes will lead you on a hike to his family finca , where you can stop for coffee and tropical fruit. Further on he'll show you the Cueva de Aguas , a cave with a sparkling, freshwater swimming hole inside. Tracking back up the hillside you'll come to an archaeological trail with more caves and marvelous ocean views.