A mix of characterful wooden houses, dishevelled Art Deco beauties and rather more anonymous concrete buildings, the sleepy town of BANES lies 31km southeast of Guardalavaca. Refreshingly untouristy, it’s known for its museum of pre-Columbian artefacts and for its association with the two titans of twentieth century Cuban history – Fidel Castro and Fulgencio Batista. Castro married his first wife in Banes, and Cuba’s elected president-turned dictator was born here in 1901.

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