We left Havana and drove north for about 25 kilometers to Viñales. It is a breathtaking and lush valley in Pinar del Rio and where farmers are said to grow the best tobacco in the world. Coffee, fruits and vegetables are also grown in this area. The rain clouds were in and out all day but it didn’t deter us from exploring the surrounding area.
The unique shape of the mountains is due to Cuba once being covered by limestone. Much of this limestone has eroded away, leaving mountains with steep sides and rounded, jungly tops. The mountains are called mogotes, which means “haystacks.” Some of the mogotes have caves and we were lucky enough to be able to explore one during this visit.
Viñales was listed a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999
The. Best. Pina Calada I’ve ever had was served by this gentleman at the outside bar of Hotel Los Jazmines.
Hotel Los Jazmines. I made a mental note that if I ever come back to spend a few nights here. The views are breathtaking.
Some of the farms we drove past in Vinales Valley
“The Viñales Mural de la Prehistoria is the work of the former Director of Mapping at the Cuban Academy of Sciences, Leovigildo González Morillo. A master of neo-caveman artistry, Morillo undertook the massive project of portraying world history up until the age of humans on a rock wall in the Viñales Valley.” I didn’t get this mural. Nope. Didn’t get it and didn’t like it. So out of place in beautiful Viñales.
Gaucho – Cuban Cowboy of Viñales
Arriving at Cueva Del Indio.
Making our way into the cave – Cueva Del Indio