Cueva de los Panaderos


Useful Information

Location: Gibara.
(21.116040, -76.140010)
Open: All year Mon-Wed 8-12, 13-17, Thu-Sun 8-12, 13-17, 20-22.
[2022]
Fee: Museum: Adults CUC 1.
[2022]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light:  
Dimension: L=3,000 m.
Guided tours: L=750 m, A=32 m asl, VR=32 m.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Cueva de los Panaderos, Museo De Historia Municipal, Gibara, Tel: +53-, Fax: +53-,
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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History

19th century cave discovered.
20th century cave explored.
2007 explored by the Gibara Natural History Museum and the Antonio Núñez Jiménez Foundation.
2008 project for the protection of the cave started.
2017 Gibara declared a tourist destination during the 37th International Tourism Fair FITCuba.

Description

The Cueva de los Panaderos (Bakers Cave) was recently opened as a show cave. This is a show cave Cuban style, which means there are no developments in the cave, and although being mostly horizontal, there is a descent to sea level which requires some climbing. At the steepest parts iron ladders were installed. It's a show cave as it can be visited only with guided tours, helmets and headlamps are provided. The city Gibara, where it is located, was declared a tourist destination in 2017, which is a little weird. A tourist destination is normally a place which is visited by many tourists, in Cuba it seems they are declared ba a minister. However, this status included financial support for the creation of infrastructure including the development of sigts and hotels.

The city has now a karst trail which was named Dr. Antonio Núñez Jiménez speleological trail, after the most well known Cuban speleologist. It starts at the Museo de Historia Municipal de Gibara, which also provides more information. Guided tours are also booked at the museum. Archaeological remains which were excavated at the cave and at other places in the vicinity are exhibited. The county of Gibara is more than 600 km² in size, and half of it is karstified limestone. Hundreds of caves have already been explored and more will be discovered in the future.

The cave was originally called Cueva del Silencio (Cave of Silence), but a group of locals started to explore the cave in the second half of the 20th century. They were supported by Luis Pérez, and so they started to systematically explore the cave. As they marked each explored corner of the grotto with Los Panaderos, the cave soon became known under this name.

Located only 32 m asl and 900 m from the coast, the lower part of the cave is water filled. Salt water and sea fauna enter the cave, so the water is brackish and contains several martine species which already started to adapt to the cave. The lake is quite popular among speleobiologists. The cave is also home to several types of bats and a pseudoscorpion and cave cricket which are both endemic subspecies. The cave is connected to the nearby La Polja de Cementerio cave and the whole system is more than