Parque Vidal Santa Clara Cuba


A perfect place to visit if you enjoy live music is Santa Clara’s Parque Vidal but, make sure you ask for the specific day because it varies (but it is weekly) when the City’s Philharmonic Band plays in the center of it, at the Glorieta (gazebo) which was erected in 1911 and is still serving for public concerts.

Glorieta-Parque-Vidal-Santa Clara

Parque Vidal is a park located in the geographical center of Santa Clara, Cuba, and covers an entire square block of the city. A true delight, the entire adjoining elements are conformed by eclectic, neo classic and beautiful colonial buildings as well as numerous monuments erected during different historic periods. The Parque Vidal is so historic and important in Cuba that it was elevated to the category of National Monument in 1998. Santa Clara locals still call Parque Vidal by one of its old names of either Plaza Central or Plaza Mayor.

In the center just off the Glorieta there is a standing bust honoring Leoncio Vidal, the hero who died fighting in this very location against Spanish forces, and for which the Park takes its name. The first monument ever erected in the park is an obelisk dedicated to the priest who migrated from the coastal town of Remedios with the other families who founded the city. Between these monuments, you’ll find the now iconic statue of “el niño de la bota” or Child with a boot. In the same way Havana is known by the statue of “La Giraldilla” as its city symbol, Santa Clara has her symbol which is the “el niño de la bota”. The impressive bronze statue depicts a boy with a boot in his hand from which a water fountain emerges. The original base of the statue was changed for a more contemporary red granite in the 1960s and it remained that way until the 1990s when, in an effort to recover the original design, the city rebuilt it in its original form.


South of that statue we find another one: a 1924 bronze statue of Marta Abreu. She was a much loved resident of Santa Clara. The base of her statue is said to be a time capsule, since it has inside some papers, a magazine and other objects collected during the construction which have been left inside it for future generations.


Bordering the park, you’ll see the tall Santa Clara Libre Hotel which was formerly the Santa Clara Hilton, considered by critics and the general population as an ugly modernist structure drowning the colonial flair of the city. Still, the Hotel building is rich in history. Interestingly, the walls of the hotel still show multiple machine gun bullet marks from the attack of the rebel forces led by Che Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos during the 1959 Cuban Revolution.