Las Salinas

16 Mar. 2018

The Las Salinas wildlife sanctuary is a mini Garden of Eden on a peninsula In Cuba’s Matanzas province, less than 150 km from Havana. Noted for its fly-fishing, Las Salinas is a protected natural reserve within the Zapata National Park, the largest wetlands in the Caribbean. If the fishing doesn’t tempt you, the wildlife will – the area is teeming with plant, bird and animal life – manatees and crocodiles, anyone? Bird watchers can spot more than 100 species, including flamingos and the bee hummingbird, the world’s smallest bird. But for salt-water anglers, Las Salinas is a watery paradise. Closed to all fishing for a generation, it has recently opened up as a pristine fly-fishing destination, but only when accompanied with a guide and a license. On this trip, our bonefish guides were real Old Men of the Sea, their eyes sharp as a hawk’s. At noon, they insisted we take a break, saying, “When men eat, the fish don’t.” We all swapped big fish stories as we ate, looking out over water still as glass. Las Salinas is clearly where old fishermen’s dreams come true.

Ciénaga de Zapata, Matanzas Province