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General Info: The Cuban Environment
General Info
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The Cuban Environment

The Republic of Cuba, with a population of 11 million, is the largest of the Antilles Islands, separating the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico to the north, from the Caribbean Sea to the south. It is 1250 km (775 miles) long and ranges from 40 km to 160 km (24 to 96 miles) in width. The country consists of more than 4000 islands and keys, nearly 6000 kilometers (3600 miles) of palm and mangrove-lined coastline, almost 300 natural beaches, three major mountain ranges with numerous connecting ranges, rain forests, and broad, rich and verdant, fertile plains and valleys dotted with tall, stately palms. The climate is moderately sub-tropical with an average temperature of 24.6 C (76.3 F): in summer 25 C (77 F) and in winter 22 C (71.6 F).

The island is completely surrounded by thousands of kilometers of coral reefs containing the most diverse variety of corals, fish and other marine life to be found anywhere, with steep walls dropping from reefs to the abyss. See Scuba Diving and Snorkeling.

More than 150 species of Atlantic, Gulf and Caribbean fish abound in Cuban waters, from the majestic marlin, swordfish and sailfish, to bonefish, tarpon, snook and permit on flats and in estuaries, to snapper and grouper on the reefs. Tuna, cobia, mackeral, seatrout, jack and barracuda also abound. See Salt Water Fishing.

For the freshwater angler we offer large-mouth bass fishing "as good as it gets" anywhere in the world, along with other species, at more than a dozen lakes and reservoirs. See Fresh Water Fishing.

More than 20 systems of caves and caverns can be explored throughout the island, some with rivers or underwater caves connecting with the sea, many with ancient indigenous pictographs, and all with their unique living species.

One of the world´s most conservation and ecology-oriented countries, Cuba offers a dozen national parks, on land and sea, covering tens of thousands of hectares, plus numerous biosphere reserves, natural parks and protected natural landscapes.

Cuban flora includes more than 6,300 varieties, 51% of which are endemic, and as for fauna there are 54 species of mammals, 350 species of birds, 106 reptiles, 42 amphibians, 1,400 mollusks, 15,000 insects and 1,440 arachnids.

In brief, Cuba offers the visitor one of the world´s most interesting and varied nature preserves, a climate that can be enjoyed year-round and comfortable and affordable accommodations to fit any budget. Cuba, by the way, is largely free of illicit drugs, practically crime-free, and the streets and hotels are as safe as you will find anywhere. Visitors do not have to fear walking the streets at any time of day or night and, moreover, you will never find a more highly educated, polite, hospitable, and affectionate people, or a more relaxed environment anywhere. We feel certain you will want to come back for more!

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