The North-South Cuban Axis
The prevailing plain in the city of Holguin resembles an irregular shaped attar with the roads that lead to the four cardinal points. The urban area, though, has a well defined north-south axis. Its main streets today called Libertad and Maceo, two parallel streets where the burg sprouted out in the mid 18th century lies in the heart of the city whose population of 262.100 inhabitants ranks it fourth in Cuba.
Its Northern edge matches a considerable chunk of the hills that slope down into the plains of and the funnel rainfall into the Cauto River, Cuba's longest watercourse, some 50 km down to the south. At the base of these hills today called the Hill of the cross and formerly known as Bayado Park Libertad and Maceo streets start off and weave up to six different parks along the way.
Regardless of the fact that urban development plans for these first outdoors spaces harks back to colonial times, further housing and landscaping works in the burg gave Holguin the name of the City of Parks, a moniker it's widely known for today.
Its accessible proximity for the neighbors derived in the Cuba tradition of usually dropping in on these parks. Thus, the funny chat gatherings were born, get togethers that under the pretension of warding off the sweltering summertime heat turned these squared blocks into true means of communication and even makeshifts grounds for conspiracy buffs for the independence of Cuba and against the neocolonial dictatorships that took turns on the saddle later on.
No wonder these chat gatherings during the Spanish colonial rule, brimming with Cuban rebels and criticizers, were nicknamed gossiping grounds by the hispanic authorities.
A Giant Gathering
Just a few door stands between the fine arts and handicraft galleries attached to the Cuban Fund of Cultural Assets (FCBC is the acronym in Spanish) and the jaw dropping museum and building of the La Periquera on the north side of the Calixto Garcia Park.
On the west side, the Cultural House and the gathering grounds of both professional and amateur artists are located, the place where old timed troubadours and pop singers, theater performers, dancers, the fanfare of literary workshops and attendees of other cultural events develop in their respetive fields.
Right in the same shadowy porches on this side, passerby's can hear Cuban melodies and tunes blaring out of the house of the Troubadours. Not far from there, the Alex Urquiola Provincial Library can be found, plus another art Gallery a few blocks down the street. Sidelong and across from the Calixto Garcia Park, visitors will happen on the Eddy Sunol Theater, the largest one in the province and host all major dance, musical and theatrical companies. Holguin's Puppet Theater is also nearby, as well as the amazing Plaza de la Marqueta.