Cayo Guillermo – Cuba


Cayo Guillermo is a popular tourist destination and is known for its white sandy beaches, but it also has abundant wildlife perfect for birding and wildlife photography. Cayo Guillermo is located on the northern coast of Cuba and is part of the Jardines del Rey, King’s Gardens, archipelago. To get into Cayo Guillermo, one must enter through its only causeway, a roadway, Puente Hemingway, which is connected to the 37.5-mile-long causeway, the roadway from Cayo Coco. One can also spot birds along the causeway and do plenty of bird watching within the only roadway. Right as you enter the island, you are greeted by the flamingo lagoon where you will spot at least 50 flamingos most days. You will find lagoons along the causeway all throughout Cayo Guillermo, but at the end of the roadway is its most popular white sandy beach, Playa Pilar. 85% of the island is covered in mangrove forests, lagoons, and swamps. There are only a handful of hotels and resorts within Cayo Guillermo. Most hotels and or resorts border mangroves, lagoons, and are surrounded by beautiful plants and trees. When staying on Cayo Guillermo, one can see up to 45 species alone just walking distance from your resort. One can spot Herons, Egrets, Flamingos, and warblers like the common yellowthroat, prairie warblers, and palm warblers. The archipelago also includes Cayo Coco, Cayo Paredon Grande, and Cayo Cruz. Though, the archipelago belongs to a larger archipelago called Sabana – Camaguey. The Jardines del Rey archipelago is currently one of the most popular areas in Cuba for tourism. The archipelago is for tourists only, there are no permanent towns or residents on the islands. Owen traveled to Cayo Guillermo, Cuba in March 2019 and has photographed the Cuban Gnatcatcher, Greater Antillean Grackle, Cuban Bullfinch, and many others.

© Vladyslava Andriyenko

Birds found here