Sierra Maestra: Turquino National Park (Cuba)

Sierra Maestra: Turquino National Park (Cuba)

Mon, 04/06/2020 - 13:48
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Turquino National Park is located in Santiago de Cuba Province, southeastern Cuba. The park is situated within the Sierra Maestra mountain range that runs westward across the south of the old Oriente Province in southeast Cuba, rising abruptly from the coast.

Sierra Maestra

Sierra Maestra is a mountain range in southeastern Cuba. The range extends eastward approximately 240 km (150 m along the southeastern coast from Cape Cruz to the Guantánamo River valley.

The heavily wooded mountains rise sharply from the coast of the Caribbean Sea, culminating in Turquino Peak, Cuba’s highest peak at 1,974 m (6,476 ft).

Located mainly in Santiago de Cuba and Granma provinces, some view Sierra Maestra as actually a series of connecting ranges. The principal cities in the region are Santiago de Cuba and Palma Soriano.

Sierra Maestra’s forested slopes yield mahogany, cedar, and ebony hardwoods. Deposits of copper, iron, manganese, silver, chromium, asphalt and marble are found in the mountains. The area is also used for coffee growing.

The Sierra Maestra range has a long history hosting guerrilla warfare, starting with the resistance of the Taínos and continuing on through various wars, conflicts and uprisings.

The area gained political prominence as the base from which Fidel Castro launched the revolution that resulted in the overthrow of the Batista dictatorship in 1959.

Turquino National Park

Turquino National Park, also known as Sierra Maestra National Park or Sierra Maestra Grand National Park, is a national park in Santiago de Cuba Province, situated in southeastern Cuba.

The park is 50 km (31 mi) west of Guamá, in Guamá Municipality of Santiago de Cuba Province. The park protects a total area of 229.38 sq km (88.56 sq mi). It was established on January 8, 1980 and was named for Pico Turquino, the highest point in Cuba at 1,975 m (6,480 ft) in elevation.

The park is located in the Sierra Maestra mountain range. The Sierra Maestra is a mountain range that runs westward across the south of the old Oriente Province in southeast Cuba, rising abruptly from the coast. Other mountains include Pico Cuba, Pico Real, and Pico Suecia.

Turquino National Park encompasses the portion of the UNESCO inscribed property 'Archaeological Landscape of the First Coffee Plantations in the Southeast of Cuba' that is located in Santiago de Cuba Province.

The park has tropical forest habitats, including the lower elevation Cuban moist forests and higher elevation Cuban pine forests ecoregions.

The park's area includes a section of Cuba's southeastern coastal habitat at the beach of Marea del Portillo.