On 28th October 1492, Admiral Christopher Columbus arrived at the island of Cuba, which he named ‘Juana’ in honour of Prince Juan, firstborn son of the Spanish monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella. He subsequently altered this name to that of ‘Fernandina’; a decision which was confirmed by a Royal Decree in February 1515. In spite of this, our island has been known by its original Indian name, ‘Cuba’, since the first moments of its conquest by Spain.
On the evening of 26th November 1492, the Admiral found himself before the coast of Baracoa, but owing to the lateness of the hour, he decided to wait until dawn on the 27th to disembark, writing in his diary, ‘… and I found a large bay… and at the end of it to the south east, there is a high, square mountain which looks like an island… ‘. This is considered irrefutable evidence that he was describing Baracoa and El Yunque.