A trip that needs to be done sooner rather than later. I rarely revisit places I have been but having been to the east of Cuba and Havana 2 years ago I wanted to do the west as I loved what I saw. I saw a big change on my return, tourism is massively spreading and thriving and that's before the embargo is lifted. Large hotels are being built in Havana and open topped buses are plying for trade.A busy schedule which covered the parts of Cuba I returned to see.Cubans may not have very much but they seem to enjoy life to the full.
- What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
An amazing trip that lived up to my expectations. A great group consisting of singles and couples aged 20's to 70's.
Vinales was beautiful and I could have stayed there longer. The Casa check in here is unique-your name and guest house hand written on A4 paper and waved at coach.
Being in Trinidad for the 500th anniversary and surrounded by music and dance in the streets.
Lots of rum-preferably dark and at least 7 years old.
Being given a friendship bracelet by the landlady in Trinidad and the welcome in all of the casa's. Welcoming but not intrusive.
- What did you think of your group leader?
Jorge was brilliant with unending patience and diplomacy. Any problems were sorted and always helpful with ideas when having free time. I hope he is enjoying the union jack umbrella I gifted to him, we never lost him on the tours as we could spot him a mile away.
Alex was an excellent driver who drove the comfortable Chinese bus safely. Jorge tells us China have donated about 2,000 buses.
- Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Pack lightly as this is the first holiday I have been on when I have never unpacked my case.
If doing the optional catamaran trip from Trinidad which I would highly recommend, you need beach shoes as there are sea urchins in the area you swim.
A beach extension for a few days would have been good as a hectic but fulfilling schedule.
- Is there anything else you would like to add?
I took lots of soap for the locals who ask for it as they also did on my trip 2 years ago, but Jorge informed us that some use it to sell and buy rum. He advised us to give to people who do not ask for it. Soap and pens were gratefully received by the children.
English magazines and tampons went down a treat with the landladies in the casa's so take some to leave.
You definitely need to take tissues and hand sanitizer as no paper in most toilets.
The sinks have no plugs.