There is some fantastic wall diving in the Holguin Province, with 30km of coastline along Guardalavaca Beach, there are around 22 identified sites here ranging from 5-40 metres deep, so whatever your experience level, there's something here for you. On the western tip of the beach you can dive in the old Bahamas Channel.
You'll find a couple of dive centres around the marina and one on Playa Esmeralda. There is an abundance of hard and soft corals on the walls, reef fish, pelagic fish and some great macro critter for the photographers to capture.
Coral House is shallow and great for beginners, with many gorgonians, sea fans and colourful reef fish, you'll enjoy doing a discovery dive here or brushing up on your skills before heading a little deeper. On the Pretty Song site you can find many fish, lobsters, crab and octopus on the wall, a cool exploration dive.
Advanced and deep divers can explore The Crown, with a crown-shaped coral formation and lots of corals and fish to find. There is also the site Fisherman with its black coral colonies and The Chain, a chain that spans the channel filled with interesting invertebrates to discover.
The clear waters and impressive walls will keep you busy for a couple of good days diving. If you have a favourite site in the area, drop us a line and let us know.
(By Kelly Luckman)
The fourth largest city in Cuba, Holguin is surrounded my mountains and has some of the most beautiful scenery and beaches in the country. The city itself isn't much to look at, but the surrounding area holds some delightful sites, just waiting for you to discover.
Holguin is located 760km (nearly 500 miles) from Havana so flying is probably the easiest way to get there, with flights taking less than an hour. Air Canada flies direct from Canada regularly, or it's possible to fly from Frankfurt or Santiago de Cuba. There is a daily bus from Havana but it takes 12 hours.
The accommodation around the beach areas of Guardalavaca, Playa Esmeralda and Playa Pesquero are mostly big resorts so if you're prepared to pay a couple of hundred dollars a night then head to these areas. If you're looking for budget then you will find some cheap 'casa particulares' in town for around $20 a night.
If nature is what you're after then you'll get it here. Take a visit to one of the many beautiful surrounding beaches or a trip to Bahia de Narajo Nature Park where you can stay overnight in the dolphinarium. Take a horse ride through the Bio Parque Rocazul or a historical walk through Campina Taina for a great informative tour. Hike through the pine forests and waterfalls of Villa Pinares del Mayari.
Visit one of the many parks, the city is full of them! The Parque Peralta (Parque de las Flores) is full of wonderful smells from all the flowers and a great way to spend an afternoon. The Parque Calixto Garcia is full of interesting music bars and chilled cafés for a quiet beer. Be aware there are many beggars in the parks so please be careful.
The El Chorro de Maita Museum is a fantastic insight into the local history, with a tour to the recreated Native Indian Village, it's educational and great for kids. There are also the Natural History Museum and Museo Provincial La Periquera if you want to immerse yourself in museums. Check out the Cathedral of San Isidoro and San Jose Church for some interesting Architecture.
If you want to be by the water then visit the nearby island of Cayo Bariay or Cayo Saetia for an escape from the city. Enjoy your time getting back to nature in the Province of Holguin.
(By Kelly Luckman)