Facts about  Cuba

Cuba’s geographical location is between 19°49´and 23°16´ latitude north and between 74°08´ and 84° 57´ latitude west of the Meridian of Greenwich; it is in the northern Caribbean Sea, just to the south of the Tropic of Cancer.  Because of its surface area of 109,884.01 square kilometers, it is considered to be the largest island in the Antilles.

Population

11 239 224

Government

Socialist State

Currency

Peso Cubano
Peso Convertible

National Poet

Nicolás Guillén Batista

National Sport

Baseball

National Hero

José Martí

Cuba

Historical overview

The name of Cuba comes from the Taino language spoken by the Arawak natives, inhabitants of the Antilles before the arrival of the Spanish: it literally means “land” or “terrain”.

When Columbus discovered the island on 27 October 1492, he named it Juana in honor of Prince John (Juan), but  in his first notes he was already using the word  “Cuba”.

The history of Cuba is divided into three periods: Colonial, Neo-colonial and Revolutionary.

In terms of the formation of the nation, the birth of nationality occurred in the era of Spanish colonialism.  The second period saw the creation of the Cuban national State even though there was an obvious situation of dependency on the United States of America.  Finally, in the Revolutionary Period the nation attained a fully sovereign existence after the triumph of the Revolution on the first of January of 1959.

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National Symbols

Law No. 42 for National Symbols of the National Assembly of the People’s Power of 1983 and Article 4, Chapter I, “The political, social and economic foundations of the State” of the Constitution of the Republic of Cuba establishes that the Symbols of the Cuban nation are those that for over one hundred years have presided over the Cuban struggles for Independence, for the rights of the people and for social progress.

Bandera de la Estrella Solitaria

Known as the “Lone Star Flag”, it was adopted on 11 April 1869.  The red triangle symbolizes the blood which was spilt by Cubans, the blue stripes stand for the country’s regions and the white stripes depict the purity of ideals.

Himno de Bayamo

The national anthem is an exhortation to the Cuban people to take up arms to fight for their homeland.  It musical and poetic structure follows the cadence of a march, divided into three parts that complement each other in the melodic and formal point of view of the music.

Escudo de la Palma Real

This symbol was adopted by the Republic of Cuba in Arms during the Constituent Assembly of Guáimaro (1869) and ratified by subsequent Cuban constitutions.

National Attributes

They symbolize the most genuine roots of the Cuban national spirit and the nobility of the Cuban people.

El Tocororo

Considered as the most beautiful bird in the country, the green plumage of the tocororo evokes the colors of Cuban fields; its breast covered in white feathers, its stomach covered in red feathers and the blue feathers on its head reproduce the colors of the Cuban flag.

La Mariposa

The mariposa flower with its white “crown symbolizes “the love of Cubans for peace”.  During the wars of independence, its boughs were used as a hiding place for Cuban patriotic women to carry clandestine messages.

La Palma Real

The Royal Palm is the emblematic tree of Cuba.   It was chosen as such because it is the most numerous, a species that is found all over the island, for its beauty, its usefulness and because it is depicted on the Cuban coat of arms.