The northern coast is lined with ports and bays and contains one of the world's finest beaches, at Varadero.This coast also has numerous small cays, scrublands and mangroves near the shoreline.
The southern coast has one of Cuba's most distinctive features: Ciénaga de Zapata, a vast wetland area of mangrove and swamp taking up most of the southern part of the province and the peninsula of the same name. Among Cuba's provinces, Matanzas is one of the most industrialized ones, with petroleum wells, refineries, supertanker facilities, and 21 sugar mills to process the harvests of the fields of sugarcane in the province.
This province has the biggest oilfield in exploitation of Cuba, located in the north coast, near of the Bay of Cárdenas and the Bay of Matanzas, where it produces the 60 percent of national crude oil. Some foreign firms make risk investment to drill for oil at this zone.
Energas, a plant which utilizes the spin-off gas to generate electricity, was constructed near Cárdenas and Varadero. It generates over 170 megawatts to the Cuban electrical power system.
Sugarcane and henequen are the major crops; subsistence agriculture is also practiced, and there is some cattle rising. In Matanzas there is also the biggest surface area of cultivation of citrus fruits in the country, with over 300 thousand tons produced per year.
Matanzas has a prosperous tourist industry. Comfortable hotels have been built in some of the most beautiful spots in Matanzas, to facilitate your enjoyment of nature.
The ruins of the Triunvirato sugar mill and the fascinating Canímar River, of navigable and quiet waters whose limits are marked by an exuberant vegetation, complement the charms of Matanzas, close to which –on the way to the city of Havana– the vast Yumurí Valley will make you stop and enjoy the privileged Bacunayagua lookout
The best time to visit Matanzas is December though April is also the most popular time.
The weather is at its coolest and driest during these months, yet it's still far warmer than those of North America and Europe.
Pinar del Rio City Cuba
In the spring and fall, it's off season and this may mean fewer hotel amenities. There are, however, benefits for traveling in the low season: lack of crowds and prices that tumble by up to 25%.
Tops destinatios in Matanzas, Cuba are:
Pinar del Rio City Cuba
Matanzas city: (founded in 1693) is known as “the Venice of Cuba” for its many bridges enriching the urban area. Also, is known as "the Athens of Cuba" because of its cultural heritage. The provincial capital surrounds a large bay, whose name changed from Guanima to Matanzas (slaughters) after a group of Spanish colonizers were killed on its waters by aborigines commanded by cacique Guayucayex, in 1510.
The name of Matanzas was quickly extended to the then village, to the lands in the vecinity and to the rest of the future province.
Land of poets, in this town was born the Danzón, a popular Cuban rhythm. There is also in Matanzas a sui generis Pharmaceutical Museum, which together with the Oscar María de Rojas Museum, opened at the beginning of the 20th century, and the Sauto Theater, complements the cultural offer to the visitors.
MATANZAS TRAVEL GUIDE