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It is located in the most oriental part of the Island, about 1000 km from Havana City and with a great contrast because it presents almost desert-like areas very close to the exuberant vegetation of the mountains. 99% of its territory is covered by mountains.

The most attractive part of the province is the Village “Nuestra Señora de la Ausuncion de Baracoa”, founded by Diego Velazquez in 1512. Its inhabitants are very affable and the city is surrounded by abrupt coasts, foliage, mountains, ans rivers. Guantanamo was the first capital of Cuba and it was named after an aborigine word meaning “sea existence”.

The City was always being attacked by corsairs and pirates that burned it in 1652, that is why the Spanish colony created in Baracoa a strong defense system with La Punta, Seboruco and Matachin Forts, as well as Joa and Caguase fortified towers.

The first parochial church of the Island was built in this Village, with a bust of the aborigine Hatuey, a symbol of rebelliousness, some meters away from the entrance. This church keeps inside the “Grape Cross”, brought to Cuba by its finder, Christopher Columbus, on December 1492. Baracoa is one of the few regions of the Island that the aborigines could escape to the mountains and survive colonization. That is why we can see features of the aborigines in the people now a days. From the City one can see the “Sleeping Beauty”, mountain that has in its surface, the form of a woman lied taking the sun, and also the famous Yunque of Baracoa.

The economy is centered in the coffee and cacao cultivation.
< Sources >
Documentos de archivo del Portal Cuba. [fecha de consulta: 3 de octubre del 2007]
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