This movie festival is aimed at amateurs and over the years, since the founder Humberto Solas started this festival, it has become a very popular event with movie makers from across Cuba and some also from further afield. Do not expect to see any Hollywood or Pinewood Studio productions, but do expect to see quite unique, interesting and original movies which are made on a budget.
Location and Getting there – The festival is in the sleepy coastal town of Gibara, which is based in the region of Holguin, which is a little off of the tourist trail although quite close to the very popular holiday resort town of Guardalavaca. You can use Holguin airport, which is roughly one hour drive from Gibara.
In addition to the film festival itself (for which there are prizes for best documentary, best film etc) there tend also to be a number of events organised around the film festival, with the whole of the town of Gibara embracing the event. Expect to see street stalls, food vendors, some public music performances, art shows and a range of connected events.
Accommodation – The town is so small and the 4 days of the festival usually so busy, that you might find that you cannot get anywhere at all to stay. Your best bet can be to commute from the tourist area of Guardalavaca.
Paul’s Thoughts: Even though this festival is not the easiest one to get to, the town is very quaint and the people very hospitable. If you have the chance to attend this festival (and ideally speak a little Spanish) then this event can be a wonderful way to experience Cuba, and away from the normal tourist crowds.
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