THE ENCHANTING EAST COAST OF CUBA
(P1) TURQUOISE water. Sugary white sand. LUSH tropical trees stretching back into a wide MOUNTAIN RANGE. In this forgotten corner of Cuba, you won’t find big RESORTS, just beauty.
(P2) The HUB of Cuba’s eastern end is the tiny city of Baracoa, which has some powerful CLAIMS TO FAME. Not only is it the spot where Christopher Columbus likely first landed on the island, but it was Cuba’s first capital and oldest Spanish SETTLEMENT.
(P3) But Baracoa’s ISOLATION has kept it from becoming a more famous place.
(P4) On one side of the Malecòn or BOARDWALK – is the Atlantic Ocean. On the other, El Yunque Mountain rises. During the day, the ATMOSPHERE is TRANQUIL.
(P5) The food in Baracoa is creative. Lechita is a MIXTURE of COCONUT milk, tomatoes, garlic, and spices that’s often poured over SEAFOOD. Chocolate is everywhere.
(P6) Cucurucho looks like an ice cream cone, but actually consists of shaved coconut, sugar, honey, nuts, guava, and papaya inside a PALM leaf.
(P7) The Alejandro de Humboldt NATIONAL PARK (named for the famous German scientist) is “one of the most biologically diverse TROPICAL ECOSYSYEMS anywhere on Earth”, and it hosts a lengthy list of ENDEMIC species that includes more than 1,000 flowering plants, mangroves and palm, CACAO, and BANANA trees within its borders.
(P8) The peaceful Taco Bay is on the edge of the national park.
(P9) The most famous resident here is the ENDANGERED West Indian MANATEE, which lives in the bay in the summer months.
If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.
- Briefly summarize the content of the article in your own words.
- What is the most beautiful place you have ever seen?
- People either love or hate the flavor of coconut. What foods do you love and hate?
- When you go on vacation, do you like to go where there a lot of people, or not many people?
- Do the beach towns in your country have boardwalks? What are they like?
- Are there famous national parks in your country?
EXPRESSIONS TO PRACTICE:
What do the following expressions mean? Practice using each expression in a sentence; extra points if you can use it in conversation.
- Mountain range
- Claim to fame
- National park