©

Matanzas trip planner

Create a fully customized
day-by-day itinerary for free

Itinerary Planner
+ Add destination
2 adults
Adults
- +
Teens
- +
Kids
- +
Close

Matanzas

Trip Planner Caribbean  /  Cuba  /  Matanzas Province  /  Matanzas
(4.3/5 based on 2,400+ reviews for top 20 attractions)
Things to do: beaches, nature, sightseeing
Matanzas is the capital of the Cuban province of Matanzas. Known for its poets, culture, and Afro-Cuban folklore, it is located on the northern shore of the island of Cuba, on the Bay of Matanzas (Spanish Bahia de Matanzas), 90km east of the capital Havana and 32km west of the resort town of Varadero.Matanzas is called the City of Bridges, for the seventeen bridges that cross the three rivers that traverse the city (Rio Yumuri, San Juan, and Canimar). For this reason it was referred to as the "Venice of Cuba." It was also called "La Atenas de Cuba" ("The Athens of Cuba") for its poets.Matanzas is known as the birthplace of the music and dance traditions danzón and rumba.HistoryMatanzas was founded in 1693 as San Carlos y San Severino de Matanzas. This followed a royal decree ("real cédula") issued on September 25, 1690, which decreed that the bay and port of Matanzas be settled by 30 families from the Canary Islands.Matanzas was one of the regions that saw intensive development of sugar plantations during the colonial era. Consequently, many African slaves were imported to support the sugar industry, particularly during the first half of the nineteenth century. For example, in 1792 there were 1900 slaves in Matanzas, roughly 30% of its population. In 1817, the slave population of Matanzas had grown to 10,773, comprising nearly 50% of the overall population. By 1841, 53,331 slaves made up 62.7% of the population of Matanzas. Census figures for 1859 put the Matanzas slave population at 104,519. Matanzas was the site of several slave insurrections and plots, including the infamous Escalera conspiracy (discovered in late 1843). Due to the high number of both slaves and, importantly, free Afro-Cubans in Matanzas, the retention of African traditions is especially strong there. In 1898, Matanzas became the location of the first action in the Spanish–American War. The city was bombarded by American Navy vessels on April 25, 1898, just after the beginning of the war.
Find what you're looking for from your Matanzas holiday, by planning the whole thing with us using our handy Cuba trip builder.
Source
Create a full itinerary — for free!

Plan your trip to Matanzas

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.
We'll find the best hotel deals
from all the top travel sites.

Best price guaranteed.
Powered by

Where to stay

Browse hundreds of hotels and read guest reviews on the world's leading online travel agency website.
Checking In:
Checking Out:

Extend your holiday

Visit top cities near Matanzas:
Historic sites, sightseeing, nightlife
Visit for: 4 daysStart a plan »
Beaches, zoos & aquariums, nature
Visit for: 4 daysStart a plan »
Sightseeing, beaches, museums
Visit for: 2 daysStart a plan »
Nature, sightseeing, parks
Visit for: 2 daysStart a plan »
Sightseeing, nature, beaches
Visit for: 1 dayStart a plan »

Recently planned trips to Matanzas

12 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM IRELAND June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 8 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM COSTA RICA December, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, outdoors, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Matanzas BY A USER FROM SLOVENIA November, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 18 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM NETHERLANDS November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM COSTA RICA December, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 12 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM LITHUANIA December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 40 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 20 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM SLOVENIA October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 22 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM SLOVENIA November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM EGYPT October, culture, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: October, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 18 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 8 days in Cuba BY A USER FROM BRAZIL December, culture, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, culture, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans

Inspirock Trip Planner in the News