Camaguey - capital city
- The old town of Camaguey with its numerous historic sights
- The Parque Ignacio Agramonte park and its surroundings
- The Ignacio Agramonte Museum with lots of interesting exhibits and a beautiful courtyard
- The magnificent churches of the catholic Camaguey
- A performance of the well-known Ballet of Camaguey
- On the track of the local hero of the Independence Wars - Ignacio Agramonte
Camaguey is the capital city of the Camaguey province. It has more than 300,000 inhabitants and the old town, founded in 1514 by the colonizer Diego Velázquez, is one of the largest and oldest in Cuba and the Caribbean. The unique ground plan of the historical center of Camaguey goes back to the time when pirates attacked the town. The habitants built a tangle system of streets and alleys to confuse the privateers and protect the city.
The city of Camagüey is full of colonial architecture and interesting places. Still, today the town is deeply rooted in their traditions, both Catholic and Camaguey folklore. The people here are lovers of art and try all to develop the arts in all its forms. Camaguey with its many facets is a place, where all travelers will find something interesting.
The museums and monuments are scattered throughout all the city. Camaguey is one of the oldest settlements in Cuba and has be declared a National Monument and a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is enough to make a short tour through the old city to find something that catches your eye.
Parque Ignacio Agramonte
Throughout its history this park has had several names, before in 1899 it was named after Ignacio Agramonte, a local hero of the Cuban War of Independence. Once it was the center of the city. In the center of the park is located a beautiful statue made by the Italian artist Salvatore Buemi. It was inaugurated in 1912 by the widow of the hero, Amalia Simoni.
Birthplace of Ignacio Agramonte ("Casa Natal Ignacio Agramonte")
The house, where Ignacio Agramonte was born is located in the center of Camaguey. It's a beautiful colonial house with a high architectural value showing Spanish, neoclassical and rococo influences. Inside you can see all the original furnishings and decorative objects of the 19th century. There is exhibited as well a lot of documents about the role of Agramonte in the War of Independence.
Museum Ignacio Agramonte ("Museo Provincial Ignacio Agramonte")
This building was erected in 1848 and in the beginning it was used as the headquarters of the Spanish Cavalry. Later it became a prestigious hotel and finally transformed in a museum. Today you can visit exhibitions of Fine Arts, Decorative Arts, Natural History and Archeology.
Iglesia del Carmen Church
This church is located at the Plaza del Carmen and was built in 1823. His patrimonial value is located in the front, the portal, the dome and the vault. The decorative elements, that were used are scarce in other churches on the Cuban island. After suffering two landslides it was rebuilt carefully and without damaging the original features in 2003.
City of "Tinajones" ("Ciudad de los Tinajones")
Camaguey is also known as the "City of Tinajones". This is because there are a lot of huge clay vessels, which you find in all parts of the city. The tinajas (pots) or tinajones (jars) were used in large colonial houses to store water when it became scarce. Currently, there are not in use anymore but became a symbol of the city.
Ballet in Camagüey
It is noteworthy that Ballet of Camaguey is a prestigious company recognized internationally. Founded by Fernando Alonso (former husband of the well-known dancer Alicia Alonso) and is the second largest in Cuba after that of Havana. The ballet company of Camaguey has won several awards and offers a wide repertoire ranging from classics like "Giselle", to more avant-garde plays. If you have the opportunity to attend one of their performances, don't doubt! Camaguey ballet is one of the best in Cuba.
Museo de San Juan de Dios
This is one of the most ancient buildings of the city of Camaguey and in 1978 was declared a National Museum. Located by the square with the same name, the building was used as a hospital by the Hospitable Order of the Brothers of St. John of God ("Orden Hospitalaria de los Hermanos de San Juan de Dios") for more than a century.
In 1952, it became a Children's Hospital and was the first center of pediatrics in Camaguey. Today the museum displays the various historical stages of the hospital, in particular the development of pediatrics in a board of medicine. In addition, there are exhibitions of visual arts, activities such as lectures and workshops and as well concerts.
Birthplace of Charles J. Finlay ("Casa Natal Carlos J. Finlay")
This is the house, where was born Carlos Juan Finlay y Barés. That was a famous Cuban doctor and scientist, which investigated in depth the "yellow fever", a disease that was common in this time in some villages, and caused the death of many people. The doctor not only discovered the causes of the disease, but as well how to eradicate the yellow fever.
Birthplace of Nicolas Guillien ("Casa Natal Nicolás Guillén")
Nicolás Guillién Batista, Cuba's national poet, was born in this small, modest home in 1902. Here is located the Research Center with his name, whose goal is to investigate the life and poetic creation of the author and journalist. The museum exhibits the work of Guillien, which was mainly devoted to social and racial problems.
This wonderful building was erected in 1850 with a lot of marble and crystal glass. After a brilliant period came the outbreak of the war. In the period from 1868 until 1875 the place was used as headquarters of the Army. After suffering damages and a conflagration, it was restored and reopened as a theater in 1926. In the 1950s it belonged to several companies such as Paramount Pictures. Here acted many artists from all over the world. Today it is the headquarters of the Ballet of Camaguey.
Sala Teatro José Luis Tassende
The history of this theater dates back to 1920, when it was built as an alternative for those who couldn't afford the prices of the much more expensive "Teatro Nacional". Formerly it was known as the "Phoenix Theater". It is a good place to enjoy high quality theater. Today it is the headquarters of the "Conjunto Dramático de Camagüey".
Casa de Cultura Ignacio Agramonte
This is where art lovers can develop their skills. This House of Culture offers writing workshops, fine arts courses, concerts, dance and theater.
Casa de la Trova Patricio Ballagas
A real cultural institution dedicated to the Cuban Trova and Nueva Trova (sing and songwriter). Here you can listen traditional Cuban music by day and by night. There is also a bar and a small souvenir shop.
Alejo Carpentier Art Gallery
This gallery is located in a building of the 19th century in the center of the old town. The name is a tribute to Alejandro Carpentier, a prominent Cuban writer and one of the greatest writer of twentieth century Latin American literature. Carpentier promoted the foundation of art galleries throughout the Caribbean Island.
The exhibition is spread over eight halls, seven of them dedicated to the work of artists from Camaguey and one to universal art.
In addition to the city and its attractions there are beautiful places to explore in the surroundings of Camaguey. Ask your householder to organize a day-trip with an included meal in the middle of the nature of the city. We recommend a trip to La Finca.
The best beaches of Camaguey province are located in the north of the province. The beach Playa Santa Lucia is about 110 km away. Here you find miles of white sand beach and marvelous blue water. From Nuevitas (80 km away from Camaguey city) you get to the incredible beautiful Cayo Sabinal.
Beach "Playa Santa Lucía" Camagüey
The beach of "Playa Santa Lucía" is home to the biggest Hotels in the Camaguey province. White sandy beaches, deep blue water makes Santa Lucía Beach a tourist magnet. If you practice snorkeling or scuba diving in Santa Lucía beach, you can enjoy the wonderful submarine world in the front of the coast of Santa Lucía Camaguey Cuba.
Apart from the hotels in Playa Santa Lucía, there is no other kind of accommodation here. There are no private homes - casas particulares in Santa Lucía beach.
Restaurants & Paladares in Camagüey
To find good Cuban food in Camaguey isn't a problem. The traveler will find a lot of restaurants in hard currency (CUC) and as well in Pesos Cubanos. The cuisine varies from traditional Cuban food to pizzas and pastas.
A good option are the paladares, small private restaurants with good service and often with a much wider menu then the restaurants managed by the government.
Another alternative are the casas particulares in Camaguey. Many of the owners prepare food for their guests. You can ask the landlord to prepare delicious Cuban food for a reasonable price (7-10 CUC).
Restaurant "La Herradura"
Popular restaurant in the outskirts of Camaguey City (address: C/ D 13 # 1ª y 2ª in the district of "Reparto Villa Mariana"). Good meals for a good price.
Restaurant "El Ovejito"
Paladar "La Terraza" (Papito REizo")
Creole cuisine for very reasonable prices (< 5 CUC). Typical Cuban dishes, prepared with pork or chicken, rice and beans ("congris") and fried banana.
Paladar "Rancho Casas"
Paladar "El Retorno"
Nightlife: Bars & Clubs in Camagüey
If it's a lively city by day, by night even more. Camaguey has many places to have fun by night. There numerous bars, clubs and cabarets offering shows, music, dance and great people. Some offer traditional music and other modern dance music. However, you can find in the street, where musicians are making little concerts and young people are dancing with some bought drinks.
Arrival to Camagüey
Most people will arrive by bus (Viazul, Astro) to Camaguey. As Camaguey is located beside the main Cuban Highway, the city is well-connected and all the busses going from Havana to Santiago de Cuba stop here.
Renting a car you can explore much better the province, but this option is much more expensive. The distance between Havana and Camaguey is 534 km. The distance from Camaguey to Santiago is 328 km. The province Camaguey is bordered to the west by the province of Ciego de Avila and to the east by the province Las Tunas.
Train is another option, but normally it takes more time and is more stressfull and less reliable.
There is an airport in Camaguey connecting the city with the Cuban capital Havana.
Weather and climate in Camaguey
Cuba is located near the tropic of cancer and provides one of the most pleasant climates worldwide. The year is divided in two parts - the rainy season in summer from May until October and the dryer period from November until April.
Temperatures in winter time will vary between 20 °C / 68 ºF by night and 27ºC / 81 ºF by day. In rare cases, when there a cold snap bringing fresh air masses from the American continent, it can get colder. In summer, it's getting hotter and temperatures vary between 23ºC / 74 ºF by night and 33 °C / 91 ºF by day. Humidity is higher in summer (80%) and lower in the month from November until April (60%).
Water temperature doesn't change so much - from 24 °C / 75 ºF in winter time to 28 °C / 82 ºF in August.
Be aware of the solar radiation. The UV-index can be very high, so, don't forget the sun cream.
- Parque Ignacio Agramonte
- Birthplace of Ignacio Agramonte ("Casa Natal Ignacio Agramonte")
- Museum Ignacio Agramonte ("Museo Provincial Ignacio Agramonte")
- Iglesia del Carmen Church
- City of "Tinajones" ("Ciudad de los Tinajones")
- Ballet in Camagüey
- Museo de San Juan de Dios
- Birthplace of Charles J. Finlay ("Casa Natal Carlos J. Finlay")
- Birthplace of Nicolas Guillien ("Casa Natal Nicolás Guillén")
- Teatro principal
- Sala Teatro José Luis Tassende
- Casa de Cultura Ignacio Agramonte
- Casa de la Trova Patricio Ballagas
- Alejo Carpentier Art Gallery
- More sights
- Beach "Playa Santa Lucía" Camagüey
- Gran Hotel de Camagüey
- Hotel Isla de Cuba
- Hotel Plaza
- Camagüey Airport (CMW)
- The bus stop is southeast of the city center. Take a taxi from there, in order to get to the old town.
- The Astro bus is only for Cubans
- In the north of the center - not far away.
- By the airport
- Hotel Camaguey
- Gran Hotel
- By the main square, near the birthplace of Ignacio Agramonte
- By the train station.
- By the park is a CADECA office
- Public Wi-Fi (prepaid-cards - "tarjetas de prepago" you get in the ETECSA-shops)
- Parque Agramonte
- Plaza del Gallo
- Restaurant "La Herradura"
- Restaurant "El Ovejito"
- Paladar "La Terraza" (Papito REizo")
- Paladar "Rancho Casas"
- Paladar "El Retorno"
- Discotheque "Copacobana"
- Nightclub "Impacto"