A park in Tampa Bay honors the memory of Cuban revolutionaries Jose Marti, a poet and journalist who helped establish Cuban independence. The park is fenced in at night and has a statue of Jose Marti in the center. It also features earth plots from various parts of the island. You can walk in the park, or hire a guide to do so. The park is owned by the Cuban people, and it’s the only Cuban-owned land in the U.S. for almost six decades. It is located at 197059.0000, Tampa, FL 33605.
The park is named after Jose Marti, who devoted his life to the cause of Cuban independence. He was born in Havana and visited Tampa as often as he could, as the city had strong ties with Cuba. He studied law and philosophy in Spain, and founded the first Cuban newspaper, El presidio politico Cubano, in 1869. In 1881, he went to New York to work for a company that made cigars. He also toured cigar factories in Ybor City and held meetings at the El Liceo Cubano.
Another important site in Parque Jose Marti is the home of Paulina Pedroso, a prominent female leader of the Cuban revolution. Pedroso was a close companion of Jose Marti and helped him recover from an assassination attempt in 1892. The park is small, and you can only visit it Monday-Friday, from 8:00am to 1:30pm. Next article.
The park has a number of architectural structures that are worth seeing. The west end of the park contains the only triumphal arch in Cuba, which commemorates the establishment of the Cuban Republic. It’s surrounded by fine Neoclassical buildings and has been declared a national monument. The city’s provincial government assembly, the Antiguo Ayuntamiento, is also situated here.
While the park’s architectural style is unusual, it reflects the post-revolutionary architectural tides of Cuba. In fact, its design is reminiscent of the Miami Marine Stadium, which was designed by a Cuban architect. The island would go on to construct even larger sports stadiums. But the park was largely neglected after the fall of the Soviet Union and the economic crisis that followed. The location is also very close to the ocean, which causes the reinforced steel bars to corrode.
Another must-visit site in Cuba is the Palace of Fine Arts. It is home to one of the largest collections of Cuban art. The museum features some of the island’s most beautiful pieces, including the colonial religious oil paintings by Nicolas de la Escalera and Tania Brugueras’ temporary performances. Learn more.
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