Once a small sugar and tobacco center, Guanabacoa is inhabited primarily by the descendents of slaves who worked the fields here. Though the town, which is full of colonial treasures, is now part of sprawling Havana, its old Afro-Cuban traditions and religions have been kept alive.
The Museo Histórico Municipal de Guanabacoa, installed in a handsome colonial mansion, exhibits a comprehensive history of Guanabacoa, with emphasis on its ethnic and religious traditions. For a deeper understanding of Santería as well as of the Palo Monte and Abakua sects that have been so important in Afro-Cuban sociology and history, this is an important visit. Calle Martí 108, Guanabacoa, Havana. 7/97–9117. 2 cuc. Mon. and Wed.–Sat. 8–6, Sun. 9–1.