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Known as Perla del Sur, or the Pearl of the South, Cienfuegos has a nautical elegance with a lively French spirit. The city rests on the shores of the peaceful Bay of Jagua — a prime shrimping and fishing locale. Visitors love its perfectly straight streets, architecture, and cultural values.This waterside city is one of Cuba’s newest settlements, founded in 1819 by French settlers, yet it’s one of the most architecturally distinct. In fact, it earned a Unesco World Heritage Site listing for this very reason in 2005.The city has two main areas: Paseo del Prado (in the central area) and La Punta, a thin peninsula home to Cuba’s most beautiful buildings. Paseo del Prado, which extends from the city’s entrance, well into the water, is the longest promenade in the country. At the end, where the promenade connects to La Punta, you’ll find Palacio del Valle, a luxurious mansion well-known as the city’s flagship building.Of course, being positioned so close to the Caribbean Sea makes this town home to some incredible beaches. There are also more than 50 diving and snorkeling sites, some of which have sunken ships to explore. Just a 20 minute drive South, Rancho Luna Beach has a more intimate feel with some of the softest sand you’ll ever sink your toes into.Fortunately, it seems Cienfuegos withstands Cuba’s economic woes with poise. After all, it is home to a popular shrimping and fishing fleet, a thermoelectric plant, and a petrochemical hub. This, combined with sparkling colonial streets free of hustlers and an island vibe, makes Cienfuegos a destination everyone should visit.Cienfuegos is located on the south central region of Cuba.

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