Pinar del Río is a Cuban city, capital of Pinar del Río Province. With a city population of 139,336 (2004), in a municipality of 190,332, it is the 10th largest Cuban city. Inhabitants of the area are called Pinareños.
Pinar del Río was one of the last major cities in Cuba founded by the Spanish September 10, 1867. The city and province was founded as Nueva Filipinas (New Philippines) in regard to influx of Asian laborers coming from the Philippine Islands to work on tobacco plantations.
Pinar del Rio´s history begins with the Guanahatabeys, a group of nomadic Indians who lived in caves and procured most of their livelihood from the sea. Less advanced than the other indigenous natives who lived on the island, the Guanahatabey were a peaceful and passive race whose culture more or less independently of the Taino and Siboney cultures further east. Extinct by the time of the Spanish arrived in 1492, little firsthand documentation remains on how the archaic Guanahatabey society was structured and organized although some archeological sites have been found on the Guanahacabibes Peninsula.