Captivating Cuba

Sarah McCarthy 11 October 2007
You probably guessed that travelling is my passion and one of my top destinations visited so far has to be Cuba.

Cuba is a fasinating island that is rapidly growing in popularity due to its great mix of cultural heritage as well as some of the finest beaches with miles of soft white sand and clear warm waters. Add to this the warm and friendly multiracial people, the Cuban passion for music and dance, famous rum cocktails and balmy tropical nights and you have all the ingredients for a wonderful holiday.

On my travels to Cuba I spent the first 3 nights exploring Old Havana, it was amazing, reminded me a little of Rome but 40 years ago. Its like going back in time. Around every corner you will find vintage cars, locals young and old sitting on the pavements watching the world go by smoking huge Cuban Cigars, magnifient colonial architecture and many museums.

Whilst in Havana, I visited a Cigar making factory, went to see the hotel room where Earnest Hemingway spent the last years of his life and did a guided tour of the city where the local representative explained all about Fidel Castro and the political situation. Did you know that Fidel Castro is believed to have over 80 homes throughout Cuba, he keeps moving from house to house and no-one ever know his exact location.

Onwards from Havana to the Colonial town of Trinidal De Cuba, this was the "real Cuba" for me. Trinidad is a town located in Central Cuba and in my opinion is like a museum in itself. Historic Trinidad is famous for its lovely cobblestone streets, pastel coloured houses with elaborate wrought-iron grills, as well as majestic palaces and plazas.

On the day of our arrival into Trinidad we went on a tour of the old centre, whilst walking down the cobblestreets we came across a funeral. It was amazing to see all the locals dressed in black, bear foot walking behind a rusty old pick-up truck that carried an old battered box which was the coffin. They were chanting some words and there were many bear foot children running behind who seem to be amazed by the tourists. At one stage I took out a packet of mints and before I knew it there were over 10 children surrounding me looking for a sweet. Ill never forget that moment.

The last part of our trip was spent in the luxurious beach resort of Varadero. Stunning 5 star resorts line the world famous beach all of which are based on an All Inclusive Meal Plan. Varadero has been offically designated as one of the top 10 beaches in the world, which I experienced first hand and believe me the beach is out of this world.

Cuba, for me is a country that I will definately return to. It is a wonderful honeymoon destination as well as a family destination. I hope you enjoyed reading about my wonderful experiences and I have tempted you to visit.......

Tip: If you are travelling to Cuba bring some pens and soap with you, these are luxury items in Cuba and very hard to come by. To see the locals faces light up when you give them these gifts is a wonderful feeling.