Cuba 2007 – Apologies for the length!

This time last year I was 4 weeks away from a very meticulously planned trip to Cuba. Obviously I didn’t blog then but I’m feeling reflective so here it is in hindsight.

Around May 2007, a few of us decided that we wanted to go on holiday. So many destinations were thrown around the cauldron and I honestly don’t know how or why Cuba was chosen but it was. And guess who got lumbered with trying to organise everything – yep, good ol’ dependable Scrumps. I don’t know what you guys are like but I am one of these travellers that read reviews of hotels, things to do, buy the guide book, see which time of year is the best to go amongst many other things. I try to plan so that I get the most out of my holiday because I never know if I will visit that place ever again. We settled on visiting three different places in Cuba and by some miraculous tour company managed to find a great deal which included all our hotels, flights and internal transfers. I was pleased to say the least.
So who came? Myself, A, RL, SS (RL‘s then bf) and G ( a girl who I didn’t know all that well but RL did. I’d say we are an eclectic mix who probably only had a few things in common but off we went.
Our first point of call was Santiago de Cuba on the Eastern coast of Cuba. What struck me the most was how much it reminded me of SL. The simple life. People sitting in doorways and just hanging out. The simplicity of it all. The hotel wasn’t great. But apparently by Cuba’s standards, it was top notch. But we’re not the type to complain – we make do with what we have. The only great thing about it was it’s rooftop terrace. The night of A’s birthday, A, G and I went up there with our bottle of rum and cans of coke and stargazed whilst listening to ColdPlay. Shooting stars do exist!

One of the many old cars that graced the “roads” of Cuba!

Santiago is surrounded by hills – hence most things are an uphill walk and needless to say we struggled!

Random guy sitting in his doorway – looks much better in B&W!

We were in SdC for 4 days (a day too long if you ask me) and we managed to fit in a baseball game, a tour around the place, visit the Bacardi home, stargaze and get stopped by the local police who had confused us with the locals! The only thing that was disappointing was the lack of basic food like potatoes and vegetables. The main dish here was rice with beans and pork. It really wasn’t that appetising so if you visit here – take some packet food with you! Luckily, on the last day we found a 4 star hotel that served pizza and garlic bread and had cheese…. absolutely lush!

Following SdC, we were transferred to Varadero. An all inclusive resort set on the white sandy beach. Arriving at 2:00 in the morning didn’t do anything for our tired moods as we tried to find our hotel rooms for 45 minutes! As morning approached, how grateful were we to find that we could have burgers for breakfast?! And that it was all topped off with a nice swim in the pool and then a walk to the beach… Varadero was awesome! We arranged a few excursions. The first afternoon was a sky dive. I honestly don’t know why I agreed to this but I am so glad that I did. To jump out of a plane at 10000ft with a random guy (RG) strapped to your back whilst looking over a clear blue ocean and knowing that you’re going to land on find white sand – there is absolutely nothing like it! And inevitable I was the first one out. There was no prepping – just a quick convo between me and the RG about how he would throw me out of the plane when he had finished counting to 3. Honestly – an amazing adrenaline rush. I remember once the parachute had opened, the calmness of being in the air. That floating down as I had a conversation with my RG about where he was from despite the language barrier.

We also managed to arranged a discovery jeep tour which allowed us to do 4×4 driving and the driving of a speedboat. Listening to Return of the Mack (you gotta love Mark Morrison!) and watching the scenery go past. I would post the video but it’s too embarrassing for words! We rode horses, held baby alligators and snakes, rode a bull and were scared by dogs. Us with nature at it’s very best!

Our last excursion was a catamaran cruise to a small island off of the mainland. This allowed us to go snorkeling in the ocean as well as a swim with dolphins. Again, I can’t tell you how awesome this was.


I think I’ve probably bored you all to death but I’m going to leave our last point of call for my next post!

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7 thoughts on “Cuba 2007 – Apologies for the length!

  1. O…..o Coldplay 😀 atleast we now know that u have great taste in music 😀 hehehe.. my favorite band.. man cuba.. niiice wud love to travel.. maybe someday i will

  2. Finrod: I’m glad I passed that test! And someday you will! :)Havanajournal.com: It’s not finished yet but thank you and come back for the final part!Ms.Spice: Completely awesome! Your time will come!Noorie: Awwww – thank you.JP: I’m sorry!T: If you can guarantee the twin – I’ll deffo do it. Don’t forget I am in New York in Dec….. 😛

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