Holguin is located 680 km East from the capital, Havana. This is the third largest city in Cuba with 1,5 million inhabitants.

Columbus discovered Cuba in Gibara (Holguin) on October 27th, 1492. The international airport is located about 1 hour drive from the hotels in Guardalavaca and 2½ hours from Playa Covarrubias.

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The beautiful beaches of Holguin

The hotels are located on six beaches in the north-eastern province of Holguin including Playa Covarrubias located in the neighboring province of Las Tunas. Playa Covarrubias is about 160 km west from the Holguin airport (HOG). There is only one hotel on that beach, the Brisas Covarrubias (twenty kilometers North of the charming village of Puerto Padre).

The oldest hotel in the area is the Club Amigo Guardalavaca. It has opened its doors in 1976 (renovated in 2002) on Playa Guardalavaca.

There is a small village or « Pueblo » in Guardalavaca with several buildings to house employees of the hotels. There is also a small artcraft market.

Watch our video of the area Guardalavaca in Holguin.

Several years later, the Brisas Guardalavaca (2002) was added. The beach of Guardalavaca is not continuous but divided into two sections. Guardalavaca means in English means « keep the cow ».

There are two legends concerning the origin of the name. First, the Spanish word « vaca » meaning cow, pirates designated « vacas » as their burial site for their treasure chests. The second is the expression « guardalavaca » which meant the peasants an alarm about pirates approaching ... hide cows!

Playa Guardalavaca (1 km)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Guardalavaca

Playa Guardalavaca is divided into three sectors: Hotel Club Amigo Guardalavaca (570 m), Brisas Guardalavaca (450 m) and the public beach to the East. If you venture to the public beach, expect to be approched by Cubans. Do not worry, they are friendly, and it is a excellent opportunity to practice your spanish!

Playa Esmeralda (700 meters)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Esmeralda

This beach is approximately 750 meters continuously. It is known as the emerald beach due to the color of water, deep green. You will find the Melia Hotels International, the Sol Rio Luna y Mares and Paradisus Rio de Oro. Playa Esmeralda is located five kilometers from Guardalavaca. A good place for snorkelers with nice coral reefs. The beach is surrounded by cliffs and lush vegetation.

Playa Yuraguanal (500 meters)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Yuraguanal

Playa Yuraguanal is an artificial beach about 540 meters length with white sand and crystalline water. This beach has an unfortunately problem, seaweed! As it is an artificial beach, algae tend to regain territory. The employees have to remove the seaweed every day! Nevertheless, this beach is beautiful, but small for walkers.

Playa Pesquero (1 km)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Pesquero

Playa Pesquero is a long beach of about 900 meters of fine white sand. It takes about ten minutes to reach by foot the hotel Playa Pesquero from the Fiesta Americana Costa Verde. There is a tide of 1-1 ½ feet in this.

The beach is protected by a coral reef with cliffs and lush vegetation for lovers of natural shade on the beach. This area of Cuba has suffered during Hurricane Ike in September 2008. Many of the trees on the beach were damaged or uprooted by the wind. On the seabed there are large amount of debris (branches). Nevertheless, the thriving marine life and we saw many species of fish, coral and other specimens.

Playa Blanca (200 meters)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Blanca

This beach is very quiet. There are not many international tourists to stay at this 2½-stars hotel of only 36 rooms. For people interested to see this beach, you may rent a scooter and visit the area. The Cuban countryside is very nice.

Playa Covarrubias (> 1 km)

Click to see an aerial view of Playa Covarrubias

Playa Covarrubias is not located in the same region of the other hotels in Holguin, but rather in the province of Las Tunas. Playa Covarrubias is definitely the longest beach of all the hotels in Holguin, more than five kilometers of white sand virgin beach, excellent for walking. This hotel is located about one hour and half from the airport. Be advised!

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