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Mural de la Prehistoria, Viñales, Cuba

Mural de la Prehistoria Viñales, Cuba
View of the Mural de la Prehistoria from outside the gates in Viñales, Cuba

The Mural de la Prehistoria is 2.5 miles west of the town of Viñales in the Pinar del Río province, Cuba. When I went to see this mural I had done zero research and thought it was some kind of prehistoric mural, painted by a prehistoric people. It’s not. Its a mural of prehistory, or at least the artists rendition, and no, it wasn’t a giant child’s finger-painting lesson using only primary colors. It was painted in 1961 by Leovigildo González Morillo, not a giant child, and even after being recently touched up, the grossly colored mural of giant snails and dinosaurs smeared onto the side of a mogote is definitely not worth the 1 cuc entrance fee, especially when the view outside the gates is a little better.

Mogotes and corn on the road to the mural
View of the mogotes and fields of corn along the road to the mural

The good thing though, is the ride out to the mural is pretty cool. Leaving Viñales by bike is probably the best option; you ride down a nicely paved and relatively flat road through the Viñales Valley. Depending on the season there are either fields of corn or tobacco. I rented a bike from a local for 3 cuc, but it was really a horrible bike and I would recommend going through a legit bike rental agency, I saw their bikes, they looked way better.

Road through mogotes
The route to the mural through a valley of mogotes

After you ride through a valley of mogotes, which are giant hills of limestone, and arrive at the entrance to the mural, skip entering unless you are really thirsty. There is a bar with refreshments and a restaurant, but the view of the mural does not improve the closer you get. The lawn in front of the mural is nice if you are set on taking a rest.

A closer view of the mural
A closer, but not better, view of the Mural de la Prehistoria

If you get stranded at the mural, maybe the chain on the bike you rented from a local snaps or you are just too tired from the heat and humidity to make the 2.5 mile ride back, it is possible to get a ride back to Viñales on one of the tour buses that routinely visit the mural.

Mural de la Prehistoria Map

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