GUANTANAMO

Cuba

Guantánamo Bay (Spanish: Bahía de Guantánamo) is a bay located in Guantánamo Province at the southeastern end of Cuba. It is the largest harbor on the south side of the island and it is surrounded by steep hills which create an enclave that is cut off from its immediate hinterland.

Guantánamo Bay (Spanish: Bahía de Guantánamo) is a bay located in Guantánamo Province at the southeastern end of Cuba. It is the largest harbor on the south side of the island and it is surrounded by steep hills which create an enclave that is cut off from its immediate hinterland.

The United States assumed territorial control over the southern portion of Guantánamo Bay under the 1903 Cuban–American Treaty of Relations. The United States exercises complete jurisdiction and control over this territory, while recognizing that Cuba retains ultimate sovereignty. The current government of Cuba regards the U.S. presence in Guantánamo Bay as illegal and insists the Cuban–American Treaty was obtained by threat of force and is in violation of international law. Some legal scholars judge that the lease may be voidable.[2] It is the home of the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base and the Guantanamo Bay detention camp located within the base, which are both governed by the United States.


Climate

Climate data for Guantánamo Bay
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °C (°F)35
(95)
35
(95)
33
(91)
35
(95)
37
(99)
37
(99)
39
(102)
37
(99)
37
(99)
38
(100)
39
(102)
35
(95)
39
(102)
Average high °C (°F)29
(85)
29
(85)
30
(86)
31
(87)
31
(88)
32
(90)
33
(91)
33
(92)
33
(91)
32
(89)
31
(88)
30
(86)
31
(88)
Average low °C (°F)20
(68)
20
(68)
21
(70)
22
(72)
23
(74)
24
(76)
24
(76)
24
(76)
24
(76)
24
(75)
23
(73)
21
(70)
22.5
(72.8)
Record low °C (°F)13
(55)
13
(55)
16
(61)
17
(63)
18
(64)
20
(68)
21
(70)
20
(68)
19
(66)
18
(64)
16
(61)
13
(55)
13
(55)
Source: Weatherbase

Get in

Access to the northern part of the bay can be made from Guantánamo city or one of the smaller towns on the bay itself such as Caimanera and Boqueron, which are to immediate north of the US held territory. Guantánamo city has trains to Havana.

Getting in to the US sector is generally limited to those with business at the naval base. Non-US, non-military personnel have been to the base. Some are still there.

By plane

Cubana de Aviación flies from Havana to Guantánamo City's Mariana Grajales Airport, which is close to the bay and near the town of Paraguay.

The US sector is not served by Cubana de Aviación. The naval base's remaining airstrip, Leeward Point Field, does not have an international airport code of GTMO. The other airfield, McCalla Field, ceased to be used before the assigning of airport codes.

Leeward Point Field is connected to Fort Lauderdale, FL (IATA: FLL) and Kingston, Jamaica (IATA: KIN) by Air Sunshine [www].

By land

Hotel Islazul, Guantánamo city may be able to arrange tours to the American military for around $40 though this service is not always available.

Until the 1953-59 revolution, thousands of Cubans commuted daily from outside the base to jobs within. In mid-1958, vehicular traffic was stopped; workers were required to walk through the base's several gates. Public Works Center buses were pressed into service almost overnight to carry the tides of workers to and from the gate. By 2006, only two elderly Cubans still crossed the base's North East Gate daily to work on the base, because the Cuban government prohibits new recruitment.

In the past, Cubans fleeing the revolution found refuge in the US controlled territory. Later, both the US and Cuba surrounded the naval base with mines. The US since removed their minefield, though the Cuban mines remain.


Get around

The US naval base's main settlements are located near the disused McCalla Airfield on the eastern side of the bay's mouth. Ferries ply the water between there and the larger, functioning Leeward Point Airfield.

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