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What to do in Santa Clara Cuba?

Wed 18 Apr 2018

What to do in Santa Clara Cuba?

In Bed and Breakfast in Cuba we will like to talk you about what to do in Santa Clara Cuba. This town is a famous revolutionary city, the assault on this city was the last battle before the fall of de Fulgencio Batista regime. But this is not everything, we will tell you some things you can do in the capital of the province of Villa Clara.

Basic information about Santa Clara

This is a town located almost in the middle of Cuba. It is an obligated stop for all of whom travel by road from one side to other of the country. It is a platform to go for almost any point in Cuba.


Santa Clara is a commercial and communication center of the island. Because it is in the middle of roads and railroads. It also has an important airport. You can get to Santa Clara by bus, train or airplane.

The city was founded on July 15 of 1689 by several families. In the city, you could see a monument in honor of them, in the town main church. It grew rapidly due to a huge fire in Remedios, a town nearby, so many of its population needed to move to Santa Clara.

Cattle raising was the traditional economic activity in Santa Clara, until de XIX century, by this time the sugar cane became more important on the island. Also, their process and marketing tobacco.

In Santa Clara you can go around walking, it is a small town. You will only need a taxi if you arrive at the airport or bus station. Some local taxis are moved by horses and there are very cheap.

You can try very good local food in Santa Clara if you eat in local places and stay in Casas Particulares in Santa Clara your trip will be on a budget.

The contribution of Santa Clara in Cuban history

Santa Clara has an important involvement in the independence of Cuba, in the War of the 10 years (Guerra de los Diez Años) and the Battle of Santa Clara when Che Guevara occupied this town.

The 10-year war, also known as Guerra del 68 and Guerra Grande in Cuba. In Spain is called Guerra de Cuba. Was between 1868 and 1678, the first of the three Cubans independence wars against the colonial Spanish forces. The Cubans lost this one, they did not achieve the independence nor the abolition of slavery.

The battle of Santa Clara was in 1958, during the Fidel Castro revolution against Fulgencio Batista, in this clash the city was occupied by Che Guevara and his army. Therefore, some people name this tows as the Che city. Here happened the capture of the armored train and for this you can see the monument to the armored train (monumento a la toma del tren blindado).

What to do in Santa Clara Cuba?

It is famous for its monuments but also because of its vitality, it is a liberal city. It is a city you must visit in Cuba.

This is a town that comes to life in the night. After Havana, this is the city of Cuba with the most relevant nightlife. 

It also has the second biggest university of Cuba (Universidad Central de Las Villas), this gives it an academical and youthful spirit to the city. You will see artists, music, and dance around the city, improvise concerts, drag queens shows but also heavy metal shows.

You can start the tour in Santa Clara around the city center, there is a boulevard, a commercial street where you can find coffee shops, restaurants, stores and small markets.

Leoncio Vida Park

This park is in the historical center of Santa Clara. It is a symbol of the local culture and identity. It is named after Leoncio Vidal Caro, who died in the battle in 1896. Before this place was called Plaza de Recreo.

In the 30s and during the Cuban Revolution was the scenery of protest and demonstrations of students, workers, and the general population. Now it has monuments like a replica made of wood of the Eiffel tower. Also has statues of patriots like Marta de los Angeles Abreu de Estevez and Coronel Leoncio Vidal.

Around the park, there are the most important buildings of the town, like La Caridad Theater, Central Hotel or the public library Jose Marti.

La Caridad Theater

It is a building with an architecture that is worth to appreciate. It is a patrimonial and cultural spot in Santa Clara. This is one of the most important locations in the artistic scenery in Cuba.

The theater was built on the land where once was the first temple of the town, the Ermita de La Candelaria. The construction was paid and donated by Marta Abre. Opened its doors in September of 1885.

It is a place you do not want to miss is you visit Santa Clara. Famous local and foreign artists have appeared there. The acoustic is incredible, it is well-conserved, it is open until this day.la_caridad_teatro

Che Guevara Monuments

In the Che Guevara square you will find this monument. It is about two kilometers distance from the Parque Vidal. It is a bronze statue of Che Guevara, it is supposed to be of the real sized of one of the leaders of the revolution.

Behind the statue there is the Che Guevara mausoleum with 38 niches carved in stone as a tribute to the guerrilleros that died in the Bolivian revolution, Guevara among them. The rests of this combatants where found in a secrets mass grave in Bolivia in 1997. The same year Fidel Castro moved them to the island and buried in the mausoleum.

This place is also a museum, that shows objects about the life and death of Ernesto Che Guevara.  

Monument to the Taking of the Armored Train is to the east of the Vidal Park, the fee to enter is 1 CUC. During the battle of Santa Clara, the revolutionaries had derail an armored train with a borrowed bulldozer and homemade Molotov cocktails. This meant the end of Batista's dictatorship and gave way to the socialist regime of Fidel Castro.

At the east of the train there is the Statue of Che Guevara Holding a Child showing the Che with a child on his arms, a symbol of the future.


Monument to the assault of the armored train(Toma del tren Blindado)

In Santa Clara you can find the monument that rises in commemoration of the assault on the armored train (toma del tren blindado).This was an important battle won by the rebel army in 1958. Commanded by El Che.

It is represented by wagons of the derailed train and the vuldozer that was used to lift the lines of the train.

This is one of the most representative images of Villa Clara, it is located a few minutes from the historic center.

Tren blindado

Nuestra Señora del Carmen Church

This is the oldest church in town. It is five blocks to the north from the Leoncio Vidal Park. It was built in 1748. In front of the church there is the monument that we mention in honor of the founder of the city.

There are also other monuments. Like busts and signs that represents important hits in the history of Santa Clara.

Now you know what to do in Santa Clara Cuba. This town has so much to offer, culture, history and joy, this that you can find in almost any Cuban city. If you need more information of accommodation for your trip to Cuba contact us.


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