Cuba Cuba is a country where the clocks stopped for decades. The largest and most populous island in the Caribbean, Cuba’s 1959 socialist revolution and the subsequent US trade embargo has frozen the island in time. Vintage American cars still roar through the ramshackle streets of its cities, while horses and carts clatter through the countryside. Far from becoming the American neo-colony it once was, however, this proud nation, whose stature and influence within Latin America has long outweighed its small size, is holding on tight to what makes it so special. Salsa still runs through the veins of every Cuban; world-class ballerinas, baseball players, doctors, and engineers continue to work for a state salary ($30-50/ month); and the island’s pristine beaches and forest-covered mountains aren’t going anywhere.