Holiday Destinations / North America and Caribbean / Cuba / Travel Guide / Cayo Santa Maria
Cayo Santa Maria
Cayo Santa Maria is beautiful, unspoiled island off the northern coast of Cuba. A dreamscape inaccessible to travellers until some time ago when the six miles of virgin beaches were connected to Cuba’s mainland through a grand causeway made of natural stone.
A UNESCO reserve, Cayo Santa Maria offers its visitors complete relaxation, some of the most beautiful beaches in Cuba, outstanding natural beauty, and some of the best resorts in the Caribbean island-nation.
Hotels are made up of exclusive bungalows carefully positioned in manicured grounds; they have warm sundecks offering ocean views and easy access to pristine private beaches. We love the huge freeform pools here, along with comfortable loungers and parasols for escaping the midday heat.
Cayo Santa Maria is favoured by those looking for an alternative to busier, more touristy Varadero. There’s only a handful of five-star all-inclusive resorts in Cayo Santa Maria, at considerable distance from one another, making Cayo Santa Maria the ultimate escape to unwind, relax, and get away from it all.
Couples, solo travellers, and families choose every year Cayo Santa Maria for their holidays because of the unspoiled beaches, beautiful nature, and complete safety ( the island is only accessible by sea or via the causeway; both are protected by police checkpoints)
Cayo Santa Maria at a glance
What to do near Cayo Santa Maria
Travel across the causeway to the mainland to learn more about the Cuban people and their culture. The nearby town of Remedios is the 8th oldest colonial settlement in Cuba, dating back to the 16th century, and still boasts some very interesting colonial architecture. The town also has centuries old traditions like the Parrandas, the largest carnival in the Caribbean that takes place once a year. None of the towns near Cayo Santa Maria are tourist destinations. This is perfect as you’ll be allowed to experience authentic local culture without having to avoid the usual tourist traps.
The City of Santa Clara is well worth a visit if you are interested in the history of the Cuban revolution. The city is known as the theatre of operations for one of the most dramatic battles between the Cuban guerrilla fighters commanded by Che Guevara and the Batista Army. After the battle was won by the guerrilla, dictator Batista fled Cuba towards the US. The battle of Santa Clara signalled the triumph of the revolution and Castro’s army advanced from here to Havana unchallenged. Santa Clara is home to the Che Guevara Mausoleum.
Santa Clara is also known as the Brighton of Cuba, the unofficial LGBT+ capital of the island. The city boasts a vibrant LGBT community and the club Mejunje has been the community’s cultural outlet for over 20 years.
Best Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
MELIÁ LAS DUNAS
Melia Las Dunas All Inclusive is located in front of the beach in Cayo Santa Maria, ideal for families, businesses and couples. The city offers a variety of tourist attractions. The complex has 2 distinct areas: the family atmosphere and another one for adults. It features modern and well-appointed rooms to get the customer to completely relax and disconnect in the resort.
ROYALTON CAYO SANTA MARÍA – ADULTS ONLY
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria is an all inclusive, adults-only hotel in Cayo Santa Maria, Cuba. The hotel is opposite a white sandy beach and crystal clear waters. It offers three restaurants serving international, gourmet Caribbean fusion food with a la carte or buffet. Similarly, the hotel offers national and imported drinks at five bars including two in the pool and one on the beach. The property has two pools with lounge chairs for sunbathing, daily activities in the area of the beach, nightly entertainment and equipment for non-motorized water sports including kayaks and windsurfers. This hotel in Cayo Santa Maria offers concierge service and 24-hour butler. The hotel has conference and weddings, photographer and florist. The Royalton provides access tennis courts. It has 122 decorated in a tropical style suites. All are equipped with safe, LCD television with satellite channels, wireless internet, minibar, coffee maker, kettle and seating area.
PARADISUS LOS CAYOS
Paradisus Los Cayos is a modern Ultra All Inclusive ecoresort located in a beautiful natural setting on the northern coast of Cuba. Its exquisite architecture has been designed to blend in harmoniously with the coastal landscape and consists of three and four-story bungalows with spacious Junior Suites and Suites. It boasts exclusive Royal Service (adults only) and Family Concierge areas, offering special facilities and services with the highest level of personalisation and detail. The hotel has a total area of 20.9 ha. Nearby the hotel, there is a tourist village with spa, shops and entertainment for all the family.
SANCTUARY AT GRAND MEMORIES SANTA MARIA – ADULTS ONLY
Sanctuary at Grand Memories Santa Maria is an all-inclusive, adults-only paradise that provides a unique selection of services and amenities to our guests. With Deluxe Suites, and around-the-clock room services, Sanctuary is a unique and stylish accommodation option for those searching for a more exclusive tropical getaway. This adults-only resort is a tranquil property that caters to guests over 18 years of age only. It features everything necessary to create a tranquil and relaxing moment to enjoy the comfort of a kids-free haven including an exclusive à la carte restaurant and bar, and a crystal clear, adults-only pool. Sanctuary is a hotel within a resort and our guests may enjoy access to all of Grand Memories Santa Maria’s restaurants, bars, activities, and health and wellness facilities.
MELIÁ BUENAVISTA – ADULTS ONLY
This upscale hotel boasts a prime setting in Cayo Santa Maria. The hotel is situated within easy access of the main attractions and points of interest that the city has to offer. Guests will find themselves just a short distance away from the spectacular Playa Canon Beach, where they can indulge in the ultimate relaxation. Those seeking a more energetic experience can enjoy a host of recreational activities nearby. This hotel enjoys a stunning architectural style, exuding elegance and charm. Welcoming guests into a world of luxury and style, the hotel enjoys impeccable service and meticulous attention to detail. The guest rooms are sumptuously appointed, and come complete with excellent amenities. Guests will be impressed by the exemplary choice of facilities that the hotel has to offer.
IBEROSTAR SELECTION ENSENACHOS
This hotel enjoys a prime setting in Cayo Ensenacho, nearby Cayo Santa Maria. Set on the beautiful coast of Cuba, the hotel lies just 50 metres away from the beach. Guests can enjoy a wide range of exciting attractions in the area. The hotel is just 58 km away from Remedios. Sant Clara International Airport is a 90 minutes’ drive from the hotel. This luxurious beach hotel welcomes guests into the relaxing surroundings of the lobby. The guest rooms are elegantly styled, offering modern amenities for added convenience. The hotel features 6 bars, as well as a choice of restaurants and a nightclub. Business travellers will appreciate the hotel’s conference facilities.
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