Photos of Camagüey, Cuba's third-largest city, Cuba

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Camagüey, Cuba's third-largest city

Camagüey, the capital of the province with the same name, is Cuba's third-largest city and, after Havana, considered the most sophisticated; it has about 322,000 inhabitants. Typical for the old city is that its layout is confusing, with narrow, short winding streets, blind alleys and forked streets that lead to squares of different sizes. There are two explanations for this: the city would be easier to defend from raiders or that it was simply built without any planning.

La Merced church, Camagüey
 
Plaza de los Trabajadores, Camagüey
 
Calle Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
Calle Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
Parque Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
Casa de La Diversidad, Camagüey
 
Casa de La Diversidad, Camagüey
 
Iglesia San Juan de Dios, Camagüey
 
Plaza San Juan de Dios, Camagüey
 
Iglesia San Juan de Dios, Camagüey
 
Cyclo taxis, Camagüey
 
At  Restaurante 1800, Camagüey
 
José Martí and his son, Camagüey
 
Sacred Heart of Jesus church, Camagüey
 
Calle Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
'Bici-taxis', Camagüey
 
'Bici-taxis', Camagüey
 
Hatibonico market, Camagüey
 
Garlic, Hatibonico market, Camagüey
 
Santo Cristo del Buen Viaje, Camagüey
 
Our Lady of Carmen church, Camagüey
 
Statues, Plaza del Carmen, Camagüey
 
Statues, Plaza del Carmen, Camagüey
 
Statues, Plaza del Carmen, Camagüey
 
Plaza del Carmen, Camagüey
 
Delapidated façade, Camagüey
 
1934 Plymouth, Camagüey
 
Parque Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
Parque Ignacio Agramonte, Camagüey
 
Horse and carts, Camagüey
 
Avenida de Los Mártires, Camagüey
 
Avenida de Los Mártires, Camagüey
 
School children, Camagüey
 
Sacred Heart of Jesus statue, Camagüey
 
Along Calle Padre Valencia, Camagüey
 
Iglesia de Santa Ana, Camagüey
 

It was founded as Santa María del Puerto del Príncipe in 1514 by Spanish colonists led by Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar, initially on the north coast at a location now known as Nuevitas and was one of the seven original settlements (villas) founded in Cuba by the Spanish. In 1528 the settlement was moved inland to the site of a Taino village named Camagüey; the name may be that of local chief, while it also could have been for a tree endemic to the area.

The irregular layout of the city with its squares, minor squares, serpentine streets, alleys and irregular urban blocks is very unusual for Latin American colonial towns. There are many churches, like the Iglesia De Nuestra Señora De La Merced, Camagüey’s most impressive colonial church, the 17th-century Iglesia San Juan de Dios next to a wonderful old square with the same name in the old city and the twin-towered baroque Church of Our Lady of Carmen on a square with unique life-sized sculptures of camagüeyanos going about their daily business. In 2008, Camagüey's well-preserved historical centre was made Cuba's ninth Unesco World Heritage Site.