province of Villa Clara is located on the central region of the Isle of
Cuba, less than 300 km. (185 miles) from Havana, Cuba’s capital.
From Caibarién, a fishermen’s village surrounded by deep waters home to important lobster farms, a 48 km. road built of stones (called pedraplén), stretches across the sea, linking the main island with keys like Santa María, Las Brujas (which has a small airfield), Ensenachos, Cobos, Majá, Fragoso, Francés, Las Picúas and Español de Adentro, among others.
This important engineering work has 45 bridges to allow the exchange of tidal waters. It’s a very nice ride across this pedraplén because the visitor may see species like sparrow hawks, pelicans, oldsquaws and the astonishing pink flamingos.
The northern keys have several kilometers of excellent beaches and an almost virgin environment. They also constitute a true natural reserve (Fauna Reserve of the Northern Keys) for a unique kind of hutía (cane rat), and a meeting place for flamingo colonies. Besides there are endemic species of lizards, mollusks and birds like the one called arriero, along with a flora comprising 248 species, 91 of them medicinal, 72 timber-yielding, 41 honey-producing and 40 decorative. 29 of them are endemic.
To some Cayo Las Brujas is the most beautiful cayo out of the three. This beach has exceptionally fine sand and a very smooth sea, runs for almost 2 kilometers. The pretty beach at Villas Las Brujas combine the best of tourism with the best of nature.Takes its name after a popular legend telling the story of a young couple whose love was thwarted by the jealousy of the girl’s uncle, who, by the way, also has an islet named after him: Borracho (drunkard).
This is the first place that meets the visitor driving along the pedraplén. At present, Las Brujas has an airport capable of holding small to mid-sized planes, 24 comfortable bungalows and a large, modern petrol station. A few minutes away by boat there is a stranded vessel that has been made into a little floating hotel, the Barco San Pascual.
This relic of marine engineering, launched from San Francisco’s
shipyards in 1919 for the transport of molasses, has been stranded since
1933. In this ship are kept mementoes of Ernest Hemingway’s voyages
through these waters and of the Cuban painter Leopoldo Romañach
who, in the ship’s deck felt inspired to create some of his seascapes.
Made into a floating hotel it has 10 cozy rooms, a restaurant-bar and
a privileged position for the visitor to look at the natural beauties