Guardalavaca is a beautiful beach located on the north coast of Cuba

Exploring Guardalavaca Cuba

Guardalavaca in Cuba is located on the Atlantic coast of the province of Holguín, in the east of Cuba. Its real name is Guardalabarca. In this region, the majority of its population, in its way of speaking does not pronounce the letter “r”. With the passage of time it changed from Guardalabarca to Guardalavaca.


Guardalavaca in Cuba was one of the first places visited by Christopher Columbus upon his arrival on the island. During the XVI and XVII centuries it was a refuge for the corsairs and pirates of the region. This area was also the seat of the so-called rescue trade, which was the name given by the locals to the smuggling with buccaneers made of the skins of cattle in exchange for European goods.1 About 28 kilometers from the city of Banes, Guardalavaca at the beginning of the twentieth century was only an unknown backwater where in times of storm the peasants kept their cattle, hence its name.1

With the opening of the country in the 1990s, due to the collapse of the USSR, this region saw accelerated economic growth, numerous luxurious hotels and all the necessary tourist infrastructure such as restaurants, shops, spas, among others, began to be built. Guardalavaca in Cuba has become now third largest tourist destination, only behind Havana and Varadero, with hundreds of hotel and extra-hotel capacities, a state-of-the-art transportation system, and relatively high standards of living for the population due to increased employment in the service sector.

Main Sights in Guardalavaca Cuba

  • Guardalavaca Cuba Beach
  • Esmeralda Beach
  • El Chorro de Maíta Museum
  • Taina Village

Museo Chorro de Maita

This archeological-site-based museum protects the remains of an excavated indigenous village and cemetery, including the well-preserved remains of 62 human skeletons and the bones of a barkless dog. The village dates from the early 16th century and is one of nearly 100 archeological sites in the area. New evidence suggests indigenous people were living here many decades after Columbus’ arrival.