Must see attractions in Santiago de Cuba

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    Plaza de Dolores

    East of Parque Céspedes is the pleasant and shady Plaza de Dolores, a former marketplace now dominated by the 18th-century Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de…

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    Balcón de Velázquez

    The alfresco Balcón de Velázquez is the site of an old Spanish fort. It offers ethereal views over the terracotta-tiled roofs of the Tivolí neighborhood…

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    Museo del Carnaval

    A worthwhile museum, this is a quick visit to study the history of Santiago's biggest shindig, the oldest and biggest Carnaval between Río and Mardi Gras…

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    Palacio de Pioneros

    This eclectic mansion (built 1906–10) was once the largest and most opulent in Santiago. Since 1974 it has been a developmental center for kids (pioneros)…

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    Museo de la Imagen

    A short but fascinating journey through the history of Cuban photography from Kodak to Korda, with little CIA spy cameras and lots of old and contemporary…

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    Padre Pico Steps

    The picturesque Padre Pico steps are almost 100 years old and still hosting rousing games of dominoes; the steps lead to the Tivolí neighborhood.

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    Iglesia de San Francisco

    This crumbling three-nave, 18th-century ecclesiastical gem is situated three blocks north of Parque Céspedes.

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    Loma de San Juan

    Future American president Teddy Roosevelt forged his reputation on this small hillock where, flanked by the immortal rough riders, he supposedly led a…

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    Casa del Caribe

    Founded in 1982 to study Caribbean life, this cultural institution organizes the Festival del Caribe and the Fiesta del Fuego every July and also hosts…

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    Plaza de la Revolución

    As with all Cuban cities, Santiago has its bombastic Revolution Square. This one's placed strategically at the junction of two sweeping avenues and…

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    Plaza de Marte

    Guarding the entrance to the casco histórico, motorcycle-infested Plaza de Marte formerly served as a macabre 19th-century Spanish parade ground where…

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    Casa Museo de Frank y Josué País

    Integral to the success of the revolution, the young País brothers organized the underground section of the M-26-7 (26th of July Movement) in Santiago de…

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    Maqueta de la Ciudad

    Cuba is obsessed with scale city models, and Santiago, with this incredibly detailed maqueta, is no exception. Interesting historical and architectural…

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    Palacio de Justicia

    On the opposite side of the street to Parque Histórico Abel Santamaría, this court building was taken by fighters led by Raúl Castro during the Moncada…

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    The neoclassical Ayuntamiento was erected in the 1950s using a design from 1783 and was once the site of Hernán Cortés’ mayoral office. Fidel Castro…

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    Palacio Provincial

    Situated opposite the Bacardí Museum, the equally Hellenic provincial government seat is another building from Cuba's 20th-century neoclassical revival…

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    Casa de la Cultura Miguel Matamoros

    The Casa de la Cultura Miguel Matamoros, on Parque Céspedes' eastern aspect, is the former San Carlos Club, a social center for wealthy santiagüeros until…

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    Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Carmen

    You can dig deeper into Santiago's ecclesiastical history in this tumbledown construction, a hall church dating from the 1700s that is the final resting…