Page 3 of Girls Gone Galapagos Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Croatia » Dalmatia » Dubrovnik May 27th 2018

Day 1 and 2 The planning of this trip started earlier in the year when a drunken Dan Boler texted Kirsten to ask where our next trip was and if he could tag along. Ironically, Chester and Kirsten (ok just Kirsten) were just starting to plan their annual summer trip. And this year it would be Croatia and a few surrounding countries. We thought the more the merrier, plus one more person helps bring down the costs. Plus, Kirsten and Chester do get sick of each other at times, so a third party is always welcome! We have 2 amazing weeks planned for Croatia, Bosnia and Slovenia, including 5 days on a private sail boat island hopping on the Dalmatian Coast. Getting any trip started can be tough at times, and this one was no exception. ... read more

Travel day back to Havana and the United States! Kirsten gave everyone an 8 am call to be ready and packed. And to our surprise, the minors were packed and ready. We had breakfast and waited for our 9 am ferry. Trying not to sweat our butts off. We had texted our cab driver who took us to the port on Wednesday to confirm that he could still take us to Havana. We got nothing from him so Kirsten got the receptionist to book us a taxi to the Havana Airport. We were still worried that our original guy might show up and were relived to not see his car when we got to the parking lot. Our new driver had Megan’s name and our room numbers on a piece of paper and we were excited ... read more

Last full day in Cuban paradise with nothing to do. We had breakfast, back to the room, changed and lubed up for the beach. Everyone had some part on their body over-exposed to sun. But for the most part, we were all doing well. Kirsten leaned that we could walk to a private beach. We were up for one more adventure. We headed down the sand to find the private beach. It was a good walk and we even had to take to the ocean to get around a bunch of dead trees to take up the path again. There was one sign that had an arrow on it and the word “bar”. Sweet! Think again, this is Cuba and our expectations needed to remain low. It was a private beach, and there was an area ... read more
with glasses
sitting with glasses
Who is the troll in the background

All our meals at this all-inclusive resort were buffets. We could handle that for three days. What we didn’t realize is that it was going to be the same exact thing each time. Not just the same type of food, but the actual food from the previous meals (leftovers). Breakfast was eggs made to order. So we had omelets with ham and cheese every day. The fresh fruit was awesome: pineapple, mango and bananas went fast. There were many things we just couldn’t bring ourselves to try. The meat sat out unrefrigerated by the grill and the following meal it was cooked and the third meal it was cut into smaller pieces. The bread would get more stale with every meal. The challenge became finding the 1 or 2 foods items that were new to that ... read more
Post Snorkle Photo
Sleeping out the rain
Dinner before the bugs

Pavel and Yudy made us a traditional Cuban breakfast of eggs, ham, fresh fruit, juice, toast and butter and coffee and jam. We keep forgetting to tell people that we don’t drink coffee. The cool thing about our breakfast was that they served it to us on the roof of their house. Rooftop patios must be new here, because many houses had the beginnings of making social areas on the roofs. It seemed as if every house in town has a room for rent. They all said whose house it was and how many rooms they had available. This is clearly a way for the Cuban people to earn a few extra dollars. Again, the outside of the houses were all the same and nothing special, but insides they are able to decorate and make them ... read more
Boat ride to Cayo Levisa
Finally hitting the beach
Waiting for dinner

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Oeste » Viñales May 30th 2017

Today was another travel day. We were up early as our driver arrived at 8 am to take us to Viñales. We have been told it is anywhere from a two to four-hour trip. The good thing was that most of our luggage including backpacks fit in the trunk of our car, but we had no A/C. So everyone had a seat for the trip. The drive was long and slow in the old car. The old cars are nice to look at, but when every trip you take is in an old, uncomfortable car, the novelty wears off. The backseat has springs and cloth to cover them and nothing else. While Chester was sitting high on the hog in the front seat, Megan, Riley and Kirsten had springs up their butt and bounded to the ... read more
Chester Smoking Cigar
Tobacco Drying
Ready to ride

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Oeste » La Habana May 29th 2017

Day 3 started out just like day 2; scrambled eggs and toast with fresh fruit and juice. Edinson and Michael were right on time at 8:30 to take us to the mountains for a swim. Mountains is a generous term for Cuba’s hilly area. We were definitely in a different part of the country that was filled with trees, cattle and open roads. Outside of Havana there is very little traffic. Our guide told us that very few people own cars in the city. The government controls EVERYTHING. Edinson said that Huyndis are the most expensive car that a citizen can buy, and a new one is $35,000, for a small one. We learned a lot from our guides on just how controlled the country is. What was supposed to only be about an hour’s drive, ... read more
Waiting to get in and cool off
Food dumb waiter
Pork anyone

First full day in Cuba. With our Air BnB, for a few extra dollars, Lidia will cook us breakfast! Yes. Scrambled eggs, toast and fruit make for a good meal. Kirsten has booked a guide and driver. Edinson is our guide and Michael is our driver. It is a little tight in the back seat, but the four squeeze into a blue Ford from the 50s that Michael found and restored to working condition. In restored we mean make run. The front seats were 2 bucket seats from a late 90’s Toyota. Like every old car in Cuba it definitely had a stereo system. And maybe some added electric windows. There’s no A/C, but we were not in the car that much. Basically, Kirsten and Chester would sit with one cheek on the seat, while Riley ... read more
View of Havana from the fort
A homeless poet (arent' they all?)
Cathedral in one of the squares

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Oeste » La Habana May 27th 2017

Travel day to Havana, Cuba, was an uneventful day. Kirsten’s niece and her best friend flew down from Omaha in the morning. Kirsten specifically told Tracey and the girls to NOT check their bags. But what did they do? They checked their bags. Chester and Kirsten flew in late Friday night. The girls met us at our hotel and slept for a few hours before our 1 pm flight to Havana as they had a 5:30 AM flight. Of course our shuttle to the airport is packed and we are the first ones on and the last ones off. We get to the airport and check in and get our visas for Cuba! We were pretty much the only group that did not have a woman in a one-piece romper. Kirsten and Chester were very happy ... read more
Airport Taxi
Riding in Style
Dinner and drinks

Central America Caribbean » Cuba May 27th 2017

After a year's hiatus from the blog, we are off on a new adventure and we are taking some virgin travelers (get your mind out of the gutter) for their high school graduation gift. Kirsten's niece Riley and her best friend Megan are traveling with us to, wait for it....... CUBA!!!!!!!!!!!! We are spending a week touring the Caribbean island that is still stuck in the 50's. Planning has not been easy with their limited internet access and they do not accept US money, so we are hiding Canadian dollars in every crack and crevice. Travel has only recently opened up for Americans to the island, so we are hoping to get the full taste of the culture before the Western timeshares take over the landscape. We will not likely be able to update the blog ... read more

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