Cuba: A Pas­sion­ate and Di­verse Na­tion

Beijing (English) - - CONTENTS -

The name Cuba comes from the word “coa­bana” in the Taíno lan­guage and can be trans­lated as “where fer­tile land is abun­dant” or “a great place.” The Repub­lic of Cuba is a coun­try com­pris­ing over 1,600 is­lands in­clud­ing the Is­land of Cuba and Isla de la Ju­ven­tud (“Isle of Youth”). It is lo­cated in the north­ern Caribbean Sea where the Caribbean meets the Gulf of Mex­ico and the At­lantic Ocean. Thanks to its geo­graphic fea­tures, Cuba is de­scribed as the key to the Gulf of Mex­ico.

Ha­vana is the cap­i­tal of Cuba and also its largest city. It is the eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal cen­tre of the coun­try. There is an old town and new city in Ha­vana. The old town was cre­ated dur­ing Span­ish coloni­sa­tion. It fea­tures nar­row roads, old Span­ish-style build­ings and is home to the of­fi­cial res­i­dence of the Cuban pres­i­dent and the ma­jor­ity of over­seas Chi­nese cit­i­zens in Cuba. In 1982, Old Ha­vana and its For­ti­fi­ca­tions were listed as a UN­ESCO World Her­itage Site.

The na­tion's pop­u­la­tion is dom­i­nated by white peo­ple and also in­cludes black, Chi­nese and other groups. There is a lot of cul­tural di­ver­sity in the coun­try. Cubans em­brace Catholi­cism, African reli­gions, Protes­tantism, Ju­daism and var­i­ous lo­cal reli­gions.

Sugar pro­duc­tion plays an im­por­tant role in Cuba's econ­omy. Over seven per­cent of the world's sugar is pro­duced in the coun­try. Cane plan­ta­tions cover 55 per­cent of its arable land, and cane sugar ac­counts for about 40 per­cent of its na­tional in­come. Twenty-one per­cent of Cuba's ter­ri­tory is cov­ered by forests, mak­ing it an im­por­tant pro­ducer of valu­able hard­wood. The na­tion's cigars and rums are of course world-fa­mous and it is the home of the Ha­vana Ci­gar.

Euro­peans found that Cuba was an ideal place to grow to­bacco. Cuban to­bacco and cigars have be­come the coun­try's call­ing card. The coun­try cur­rently has 35 ci­gar brands and pro­duces more than 315 mil­lion cigars an­nu­ally, among which 250 mil­lion are con­sumed by Cubans and 65 mil­lion ex­ported to other coun­tries. The Ha­vana Ci­gar is some­times con­sid­ered the best in the world.

Cuba is a mys­te­ri­ous, at­trac­tive and glam­orous coun­try. It fea­tures more than 7,000 km of coast­line and over 300 white sand beaches. Va­radero Beach is con­sid­ered one of the eight best-known beaches in the world.

At the “Colour­ful World” event, Cuba's booth fea­tured mod­els of vin­tage cars, bi­cy­cles, ceram­ics and young girls, which are of­ten seen on the streets of Ha­vana, to de­pict daily life in the coun­try. A staff mem­ber at the booth pointed to some items and men­tioned: “This girl is of African de­scent, and she is wear­ing tra­di­tional African dress. She is a typ­i­cal Cuban girl. The cigars and rum next to her are Cuban ne­ces­si­ties. This type of vin­tage car is com­monly seen in Cuban streets. This bi­cy­cle is dif­fer­ent from Chi­nese ones in de­sign. Cuban bi­cy­cles usu­ally have a semi-closed canopy above their han­dle­bars and back seats.”

The staff mem­ber added that Cuba is known for its salsa danc­ing, which is a type of Latin dance ac­com­pa­nied by fast paced mu­sic. Pairs of dancers look like two peo­ple that are fall­ing in love. The dance is some­times con­sid­ered a mag­i­cal dance that can in­spire the dancers' love.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.