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Gardens of the Queen

Gardens of the Queen is an archipelago stretching over more than 660 uninhabited coral reefs, sandy ‘cayos’ and mangrove islets in southern Cuba. This chain is home to rich marine biodiversity, including healthy coral reefs, seagrass beds, coral sandy cays, mangroves and open ocean ecosystems that are home to migrating seabirds, reptiles, mammals and fish. While many islands in the Caribbean have suffered greatly at the hands of destructive tourism practices, pollution from unsustainable coastal development and severe habitat degradation from overfishing, Gardens of the Queen is a diamond in the world of marine ecosystems that has thankfully been protected from these threats. About 80 km off the southern central coast of Cuba, the marine portion of 1,995 km2 is now classified as an IUCN Category II Protected Area. Access to the area is heavily restricted and commercial fishing is strictly prohibited in the area; only sustainable tourism and conservation activities are permitted, providing an good example of conservation policy.

Protected Species

Coral Reefs Mangrove forests Seabirds Seagrass
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