Isla de la Juventud
Isla de la Juventud, known as Pinos Isle until 1978, is the second-largest Cuban island and the seventh-largest island in the Caribbean, located 31 miles to the south of the Cuban mainland. The island was discovered by Spanish explorer Christopher Columbus in 1494, and it was known to be a pirate haven and the home of one of the last indigenous populations of Cuba. After the Spanish-American War and the independence of Cuba, the United States government could not decide whether it was included in the definition of an independent Cuba, and it was not until 13 March 1925 that the US Senate agreed to cede the island to Cuba (despite US companies and citizens owning 95% of the island's land). In 1978, in keeping with a 1967 promise, Fidel Castro renamed the island from Pinos Isle ("island of the pines") to Isla de la Juventud ("island of youth"), reflecting how the communist youth had revolutionized the national environment and society on the island. Nueva Gerona serves as the island's capital, while Santa Fe is its second-largest and oldest city. In 2010, the island had a population of 86,420 people.


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