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Sancti Spíritus
—  Municipality  —
Yayabo Bridge over the Yayabo River som suger
Sancti Spíritus, Cuba is located in Cuba1
Location of Sancti Spíritus in Cuba
Coordinates: 21°56′2″N 79°26′38″W / 21.93389°N 79.44389°W / 21.93389; -79.44389
Country  Cuba
Province Sancti Spíritus
Founded 1514[1]
Area [2]
 - Total 1,151 km2 (444.4 sq mi)
Elevation 75 m (246 ft)
Population (2004)[3]
 - Total 133,843
 - Density 116.3/km2 (301.2/sq mi)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
Area code(s) +53-41

Sancti Spíritus is a municipality and city in the province of Sancti Spíritus, central Cuba, and is the provincial capital. Sancti Spíritus is Latin for Holy Spirit.

Contents

History

The Parroquial Mayor, Cuba's oldest church, in Sancti Spiritus center

The city was founded by Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar in 1514.[1] Francisco Iznaga, a rich Basque landowner in the western portion of Cuba during the first 30 years of the colonization of Cuba, was elected Mayor of Bayamo in 1540. Iznaga was the originator of a powerful lineage that finally settled in Sancti Spiritus & Trinidad where the Torre Iznaga is. His descendents fought for the Independence of Cuba and the Annexation to the US from 1820 to 1900. It's one of the best preserved cities in the Caribbean from the time when the sugar trade was the main industry in the region.

The Parroquial Mayor is located two blocks south of the town's main square; it is a venerable green towered church whose early 16th-century origins make it the country's oldest. Nearby is the Museo de Arte Colonial (Colonial Art Museum), perhaps Sancti Spíritus's most splendid colonial home is the city's standout attraction. The opulent former palatial mansion of one of Cuba's most elite families, the Valle Iznaga clan, who fled Cuba after Fidel's Revolution, it became the property of the state in 1961. Ninety percent of what you see inside, from furniture to paintings, is original. Though the family obviously kept an impressive collection of Limoges porcelain, French gilded mirrors, Italian marble tables, and Baccarat crystal chandeliers here, it wasn't their primary residence; the house was used mostly to host family members in transit, so the furnishings were rather eclectic. The three bedrooms are decorated in grand style, though, with handmade lace, embroidered sheets, and hand-painted glass. Note the gorgeous and very Cuban leather sillón fumador (smoking chair) and, in the music room, the mid-18th-century American piano, one of only two of its type in Cuba. In the tearoom is the family seal, which says a lot about the arrogance of the rich and powerful: "El que más vale no vale tanto como Valle vale" ("He who has the greatest worth isn't worth as much as a Valle is worth" -- playing off the Spanish word for "worth" with the family surname).

Another interesting landmark in this city is one of Cuba's older bridges, over Yayabo river. Built in 1815 with clay bricks it forms 5 arcs being the center one 9 meters tall. The entire bridge is only 85 meters long and was designed for pedestrians and carriages during Colonial Cuba but has resisted modern heavier traffic so far.

Geography

The municipality is divided into the barrios of Banao, Bellamota, Bijabo, Guasimal, Guayos, Hospital, Jíbaro, Manacas, Mapos, Paredes, Paula, Pelayo, Pueblo Nuevo, San Andrés, Tuinicú, Tunas de Zaza and Zaza del Medio.[1]

The Zaza Reservoir is located south-west from the city.

Sports

Sancti Spiritus is the home of the Sancti Spíritus Gallos baseball team.

Demographics

In 2004, the municipality of Sancti Spíritus had a population of 133,843.[3] With a total area of 1,151 km2 (444.4 sq mi),[2] it has a population density of 116.3 /km2 (301.2/sq mi).

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Guije.com. "Sancti Spíritus". http://www.guije.com/pueblo/municipios/vsancti/index.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-07.   (Spanish)
  2. ^ a b Statoids (July 2003). "Municipios of Cuba". http://www.statoids.com/ycu.html. Retrieved 2007-10-07.  
  3. ^ a b Atenas.cu (2004). "2004 Population trends, by Province and Municipality". http://www.atenas.inf.cu/todo/Estadisticas/TABLA%20No_3balance.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-07.   (Spanish)

External links

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Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Sancti Spíritus article)

From Wikitravel

North America : Caribbean : Cuba : Central Cuba : Sancti Spíritus

Sancti Spiritus is a city in central Cuba.

Understand

Escambray, [1] is the local periodical.

Get in

Viazul [2] provides several buses a day from Camagüey, Havana, Santa Clara and Santiago de Cuba. There is also service to Trinidad and Varadero.

There is an overnight train to/from Havana on alternate days, and there may be a (very) early morning train to Santa Clara and Cienfuegos that returns in the afternoon. Sancti Spiritus is not on the main line. Check that the trains are running in advance.

Get around

There are very few taxis in Sancti Spiritus, but horse carts and bicycle-taxis are all over. Horse carts wait outside the bus terminal and leave when full to the Parque Serafin Sanchez in the historical centre of the city.

See

Sights in Sancti Spiritus include:

  • The bridge over the Rio Yayabo, built by the Spanish in 1815
  • Museo de Arte Colonial, just north of the bridge, which displays 19th Century furniture in a huge house that once belonged to the Valle-Iznaga family
  • Street market along Calle Llano, which is paved with cobblestones (just east of the museo de Arte Colonial)
  • Fundacion de la Naturaleza y El Hombre, located off the Parque Maceo in the northern part of the city centre, which documents the 17,422-km canoe trip from Equador to Barbados led by Cuban writer Antonio Nunez Jimenez in 1987.

Do

Take a walk through the historical centre of the city, starting from the train station in the south and ending at the Parque Maceo in the north.

Sleep

There are two hotels in Sancti Spiritus -- the Hostal del Rijo off the Plaza Honorato and the Hotel Plaza off the Parque Serafin Sanchez. Both are in historical colonial buildings.

There are about two dozen casa particulares to choose from. Touts will meet all incoming buses and happily escort you to a casa.

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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