About Museo Playa Girón
Museo Playa Girón (Bay of Pigs Museum) in Cuba is dedicated to the Bay of Pigs invasion.
History of Museo Playa Girón
In April 1961, during the Cold War, approximately 1,400 Cuban exiles invaded the Bay of Pigs – Playa Girón – with the aim of overthrowing Cuban leader Fidel Castro.
This attack failed in its entirety, with most of the force being taken prisoner and around one hundred being killed. The Bay of Pigs invasion was particularly humiliating for the US government under President John F Kennedy, who supported the exiles in their attempted coup by land and by air as well as training them.
Museo Playa Girón today
The museum is small, with only two rooms inside. It houses a collection of photographs and other historic pieces relating to the invasion, including a number of emotive personal artefacts. It also celebrates Cuba’s tactical prowess, and goes into detail on the precise military specifics of the operation, including the weapons and tactics used, details on the Cuban troops, and the aftermath of the war.
Outside there lie the remains of an American aircraft as well as other military vehicles. Look out for the poignant mural.
Museo Playa Girón does not currently offer any English translation of its exhibits, so it’s advisable to go with someone who can read Spanish – whether that be a travelling companion or hiring a guide.
Getting to Museo Playa Girón
The museum is in the small town that has grown up around Playa Girón: there are accommodation options and plenty of amenities for tourists. The town is on the southern side of Cuba, at the end of Ruta 122 and start of Ruta 11.
It’s about 90 minutes from the city of Cienfuegos – you’ll be able to catch a bus or hitchhike here easily, otherwise you can drive – although watch out for the quality of Cuba’s roads in places.