Matanzas, located in the western part of Cuba, has a unique landscape due to the fact that its growth has taken place on waving hills and river valleys bordering a wide harbor.
From la Loma de Monserrate (Monserrate Hill), only one kilometer from downtown, the whole city can be admired, crossed by its two silver ribbons, the abundant and rippling San Juan River and the gentle and peaceful Yumurí, famous for its echo, which constitute a chosen spot for romance and love, and a source of inspiration for its poets and musicians throughout its history. These rivers are crossed by el Puente de la Concordia, the first bridge built in the country, which also is linked to 4 more bridges. That is why Matanzas is also known as la Ciudad de los Puentes (the City of the Bridges) besides other names, such as, la Ciudad de los Ríos (the City of the Rivers), la Atenas de Cuba (the Athens of Cuba), la Venecia Cubana (the Cuban Venice) and la Nápoles de América (the Naples of America).
Towards the East, and outside the city, the old Canímar River flows into the Bay, which banks and wooded fields have a unique beauty. In the city itself, there are some outstanding places; the Sauto Theater, the Pharmaceutical Museum, the Junco Palace and the industrial area.
Matanzas has caves in las Lomas de Simpson (Simpson Hills) and in Canímar, but the Bellamar Caves, discovered in 1861, constitute one of the most picturesque tourist attractions of its type in the country. Nevertheless, the jewel of Matanzas, after its bay, is Varadero Beach, located in the north coast of the province.
In the fifties, Americans considered Varadero as the most beautiful beach of the world. Since then, Varadero has been developed very fast. We are talking about an area of 20 km of sand and water and another with water and rock. It has the virtue to possessing a fringe of clean, pure, very white and fine sands, and transparent waters. The sea depths are equally nice and not very deep. In fact, that is the characteristic that gave its name to Varadero, since a time, some ships accidentally ran aground, or because in a certain moment that place was used to anchor and repair the ships, taking advantage of its deep waters. In Varadero there are three, four and five stars hotels, the majority of them with high comfort and levels and excellent services. A dozen of foreign hotel companies associated with the Cuban companies administer the facilities. In this wonderful beach, visitors can enjoy an impressive group of entertainment centers, nightclubs and water sports facilities.
The Mansión Xanadú, a former residence of the multimillionaire Dupont, the Varadero Varadero Golf Club, the Conventions Center Plaza the las Américas, the Delfinario and Marinas are our suggestions to visit.