"Bayamo - the heart of the Sierra Maestra" Bayamo by TOFFY

Bayamo Travel Guide: 7 reviews and 24 photos

Founded in 1513, Bayamo provides not only a great lesson in Cuban history, but getting there is also a beautiful trip. Bayamo was the third of seven cities established by conquistador Diego Velazquez. It is not only nestled perfectly in the Sierra Maestra mountains, but it also sits on the navigable Rio Bayamo that flows into the Rio Cauto, which used to be a major transportation route. The swampland to the north of the city provides a reserve for hunting and fishing, including duck, quail, rabbit, bass and even the indigenous,, groundhog-like rodent known as the "Hutia"

This city is most famous for its role in the fight for independance against Spain and its move to free slaves in 1868. Led by Bayamo-born Carlos Manuel de Cespedes, an owner of a sugar plantation, conspirators met secretly at Masons' meetings or at chess tournaments and planned the freeing and arming of slaves against the Spanish, and began the Ten Years War Today , with 22 generals of independence born in this city, much of its past is celebrated with monuments, sculptures, museums, and famous homes . Even the San Salvador church, one block from the main square, was where Cuba's national anthem was first sung.

Head for the main square, where you will find the Royalton Hotel, the Town Hall where the document abolishing slavery was signed, and the house where Cespedes was born (a musum). In the centre is a park where special shows are often held. At the opposite end of the square from the Royalton Hotel is shopping area blocked off to traffic. Take a walk down there and watch for the hydro electric poles which have been sculptured as paint pots and paint brushes.
This is not a tourist oriented town. What you will see is real Cuba going about its day.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Great city for any history buff
  • Cons:What may be a con for one, may be a pro for another.
  • In a nutshell:A very pleasant stay
  • Last visit to Bayamo: Nov 2004
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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