Taino smallpox epidemic The Spaniards, who first arrived in the Bahamas, Cuba, and Hispaniola in 1492, and later in Puerto Rico, did not bring women in the first expeditions. They took Taino women for their common-law wives, resulting in mestizo children. Sexual violence in Haiti with the Taino women by the Spanish was also common. Scholars suggest there was substantial mestizaje or racial and cultural mixing in Cuba, as well, and several Indian pueblos that survived into the 19th century. The Taino became extinct as a culture following settlement by Spanish colonists, primarily due to infectious diseases to which they had no immunity. The first recorded smallpox outbreak in Hispaniola occurred in December 1518 or January 1519. The 1518 smallpox epidemic killed 90% of the natives who had not already perished. Warfare and harsh enslavement by the colonists had also caused many deaths. By 1548, the native population had declined to fewer than 500.
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Liberty Park is one of the nicest areas of Matanzas, with beautiful architecture, interesting museums and abundant trees for shade, its great place for people watching. Just a few blocks directly west of Plaza de la Vigia you'll discover Parque de La Libertad, within a few blocks of several more of Matanzas’ most interesting sights, including a 1909 bronze statue of Jose Marti which takes center stage of the Parque de La Libertad Matanzas. The park is also the bus [...]
In 2009 the city of Matanzas inaugurated a national museum on the Slave Route in the Castle of San Severino. The Museum of the Slave Trade in Cuba was opened by UNESCO and tells the riveting story about how the Atlantic slave trade forms an essential part of the shared history of Africa, Europe, the Caribbean and Americas. Designed to bridge generations, the museum is an interesting place to learn about African history, traditions and languages and how they transcended [...]
The Sauto Theater opened in 1863 and has remained a focal point of the city ever since. Designed in U-shaped 775-seat configuration it is hailed by musicians to have some of best acoustic resonances in the world. The interior of the Teatro Sauto is almost completely covered with ornate wood-paneling giving the interior a bourgeois appearance. The seating area has three VIP balconies and the floor can be raised internally to convert the auditorium into a ballroom. Considered the most [...]
The 2.5KM (1.5 miles) of underground caves called the Cuevas Bellamar are by far Cuba’s oldest tourist attraction. Located just 5km southeast of Matanzas the caves have been carbon dated to be 300,000 years old. The cave system was originally discovered in 1861 and now provides terrific spectacle of stalactites and stalagmites and impressive crystallized domes. Tour of the Bellamar caves take 45-minutes and tours are every hour starting at 9:30am. There is no need to book in advance and [...]
Address: Peninsula de Zapata, Playa Larga, Matanzas Hotel Playa Larga is located in a privileged part of the Zapata Peninsula Biosphere reserve right next to the Bay of Pigs. Blessed with one of the most beautiful beaches on the south coast of Cuba with pure white sand and lush tropical vegetation, the Hotel Playa Larga is a true naturist paradise. The cabins are right on the seafront, making this hotel a true beach oasis. Hotel Playa Larga is visited by [...]
Granma province manages to blend unique environmental diversity with important historical significance, this place includes 275 sq km of teeming forests peculiar topography and staggered marine terraces and reefs. It's also [...]
The Granma province has two expansive national parks, GRAN PARQUE NACIONAL SIERRA MAESTRA (sometimes called the National Park of Turquino) and PARQUE NACIONAL DESEMBARCO DEL GRANMA (National Park Landing of [...]