What is Cuba's Population and Ethnic Makeup?


The population of Cuba is just over 11 million. 64 percent of the country is white, 26 percent is mestizo, and 9 percent is Afro-Cuban.

Cuba’s population is quite diverse, especially in the capital city of Havana. In places like Santiago de Cuba you will see mostly Afro-Cubans. These Cubans are descendants of slaves brought from western Africa, primarily during the 17th and 18th centuries. When the Spanish first arrived in Cuba in the 16th century, they took many indigenous women as their wives. Many Cubans are of mixed race, with some European and some native ancestry. These people are referred to as mestizos. Cubans with almost entirely European heritage are called criollos.