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María la Gorda

If you like diving you should visit María la Gorda, one of the facilities dedicated to this branch of tourism in Cuba. This place is located in the Reserve of the Biosphere in Guanacahabibes " in the northern part of the Island" María la Gorda is an excellent place for lovers of scuba diving because of its transparent warm waters and 39 spots to practise immersion.

The basements of Maria la Gorda are among the top ten in Latin America, they posses abundant marine species and extraordinary beautiful corals. What is the source of such original name? There are many legends around them. One of them tells about a Venezuelan aborigine kidnapped by pirates and left in this western Cuban region, having 5 miles of beach with transparent water.

The aboriginal woman named María settled in the place and opened a pension, where food and pleasure were served to the filibusters. The idea is that her name and her voluptuous appearance contributed to give that territory its present name.

María La gordaThere are available more than 112 000 miles of the Cuban insular platform, with around 8000 miles of coast irrigated by the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

Around 6500 species of fishes, crustaceous, sponges and mollusc, along with 1360 miles of coral reef in perfect condition, make the largest of all Antilles one of the best preserved submarine eco-systems in the region.

These basements have an added value: the thousand vessels that have sunk from the colonial times up to now. It is the result of the role of Cuba, due to its geographical position, in the fleets journeys from the Caribbean to Europe. Thirty specialized centres of diving operate in the Caribbean, introductory courses, diving in coral reefs and caverns, all of them following the international standards for this activity.

On the other hand, it gives the possibility to admire the largest reservoir of black coral in the Cuban sea. One of the peculiarities of María la Gorda is the fact that just 45 feet deep it is possible to find black coralline structures, where sea species as the barracuda and the pargo.

Those interested in this form of tourism could find 50 available bungalows, with all the comfort for a perfect retirement before diving in the warm waters of the Cuban platform.