Matanzas (mätänˈsäs) [key], province (1990 pop. 601,500), W central Cuba. Matanzas is the capital. The northern coast is lined with ports and bays and contains one of the world's finest beaches, at Varadero ("Playa Azul"). In the northern half of the province are plains; in the south are low-lying wetlands. The southern coast includes the site of the Bay of Pigs Invasion. Sugarcane and henequen are the major crops; subsistence agriculture is also practiced, and there is some cattle raising. Matanzas has a tourist industry as well as many mineral springs.
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