Blogs from Centro, Cuba, Central America Caribbean - page 3


Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro » Trinidad August 6th 2012

The Quiet Charm of Trinidad There is nothing better than exploring. There is nothing similar to the feeling of being taken by surprise. There is nothing more special than a place which challenges your expectations, puts you completely out of your comfort zone, and then finally hands you your rewards on a silver platter. I had been in Cuba for 4 days and was yet to experience a major culture shock. The country was amazing, the people were friendly enough and the food had far outweighed all my expectations. I had been in Varadero, which as anyone who has been to Cuba knows, is not the real Cuba. Cushy and relatively rich it could almost be mistaken for a part of Spain. This was not something that I knew. Rental Car picked up, we left the ... read more
The streets
Cuban Graffiti
Night Life

5.5.2012 Had an early start today to go to Camaguey through the countryside it took a total of 7-8 hrs, 5 ½ driving, had a couple of stops on the way. Very agricultural, tobacco fields, sugar cane fields, bit cattle runs and also a lot of goats, the countryside is quite green but the animals look they are in poor condition. Like everything else in this country. 95percent of everything is state run, hotels, restaurants, travel agencies etc etc. The lines of people outside banks, bakeries, fruit shop (if you can call them that), butchers (yuk!!!) is incredible, the people here get rations on the 1st of every month and that usually can last them for 2 ½ weeks then they have to buy from their own money food for the last week or two. Stopped ... read more

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro » Trinidad April 28th 2012

There's a thinly veiled hint of self centredness at the root of many visitors motives for jetting into Cuba and we joined that queue. On the wrong end of US inflicted trade embargoes for over 50 years, Cuba's improvised methods to survive in the face of financial adversity are a surreptitious part of the attraction to this most individual of countries. Would Cuba still pique the senses to the same degree if the streets of Havana were choked with Toyotas rather than 50 year old plus Buiks, Plymouths and Chevies? Or would the crumbled elegance of its Spanish colonial architecture be just as seductive all spruced up in its Sunday best? Sure we'd all love to see Cuba back in the fold, but selfishly, a major component of its allurement is viewing it in its semi ... read more
Havana Vieja

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro March 25th 2012

There is much more to say about Cuba than old cars, cigars, salsa, Che, Fidel, Raul and socialism. I LOVED CUBA. It’s not all that scary, oppressed, and poor as some media, blogs, and tourists make it seem. It was very save and I could actually walk on the streets in the middle of the night. I don’t have to lock three doors and hide the keys in my bra like I did it in Costa Rica. It all reminded me of Ukraine: apartments, old architecture, theatres, Lada cars, white chock walls, collection of empty perfume bottles, gas stoves, and water on schedule. Instead of “Coca-Cola,” “Samsung,” “AT&T” you can see “Socialism Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow,” “Live Fidel,” and “Revolution.” Kids wear uniform with little red scarves. People wash bags from milk and reuse them. There ... read more

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro March 25th 2012

CUBAN MONEY: I can’t use my US Debit Card here so I had to bring a big stuck of $20. To exchange dollars there are two options. (Love options!!!!) One is CUC and the other is National Currency or pesos. 0.8 CUC ≈ One Dollar. And 25 Pesos ≈ 1 CUC. So after changing 60 CUC I got a huge pack of Pesos. It’s so confusing that I had also to get another wallet. SHOPPING: When you go to a store or a restaurant you have to ask whether you pay in CUC or pesos. After a few days I could tell based on the place. As a rule of thumb, poorer looking places, old Chevy taxis, buses and all you buy on the street charge in pesos. Better, tourist looking places, and yellow-plate taxis charge ... read more

Cuba is a place like no other, a place where time has stood still since the 1950s. Memories of the past are visible everywhere you look, ancient Spanish buildings from colonial times and the best collection of classic cars you will ever see – the streets of Havana literally a classic car museum of examples from the 1940s & 50’s. Cuba is now very special for us, the longer we stayed and the deeper our knowledge became of its past and the things that make it great, the more we learned to appreciate it for what it is. In Cuba, we learned how to live back in time. We learned to make use of whatever basic facilities were available which we found difficult in the beginning. Internet is scarce and expensive, as are International phone calls ... read more
Capitolio, Havana

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro August 1st 2011

As music lovers, my husband and I always wanted to experience Cuba in a more local setting. We had been to the all-inclusive resorts, which are great if you just want to lie in the sun, eat and drink. We are more adventurous than this, so we decided a week in Havana would be perfect for us. And it was! The music, the architecture, the people ... all met our expectations and more! Even the fellow travellers we met were more in tune to our way of travelling. We stayed right in Old Havana, at the Parque Central Hotel. This hotel was modern, clean, service was great and staff very helpful. We wandered the streets most of the time, map in hand, and were awed by the buildings, both restored and crumbling, that make up this ... read more

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro » Trinidad May 15th 2011

Cuba!! by Rachael Arriving in Havana!! We had visions of scary immigration control upon arriving in Cuba but as usual with most things on this trip it was a lot less daunting in reality. However we did have a bit of drama upon leaving the airport - we had booked into a hostel and were quite perturbed when none of the taxi drivers or any locals had heard of it...finally we were taken to a random house and discovered it was actually a casa particular -which is what we stayed in the entire time in Cuba, where you stay in a family´s home and they cook your meals for you, rather than staying in a touristy hotel. More complications followed as the owner Oscar unfortunately couldn´t have us to stay as his bathroom was broken or ... read more
El dia de los trabajadores parade in Havana
Playa Ancon
getting ready for scuba diving!!

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro » Santa Clara April 6th 2011

Santa Clara Wednesday 8th April We spent most of the previous day travelling across the island from Santiago De Cuba. It’s a long bus ride but I’ve been buoyed by the news that my Santaria prayer for a football ticket has been answered and Pat and Henry are rather pleased that, 10 days into our tour, their luggage has finally caught up with them! Our hotel, the Los Caneyes is a large tourist hotel. At first we seem to have hit new levels of comfort. For the first time since leaving Havana we have something to attach our shower attachment to. Cat is slightly embarrassed to find herself in a suite with two bathrooms and with a bottle of champagne wai... read more
Captured Arms
Che Memorial
Inside Armoured Train

Central America Caribbean » Cuba » Centro » Camagüey April 1st 2011

Camaguay Friday 1st April Camaguay is Cuba’s third largest city and one of the oldest settlements on the island but I suspect that that main reason that the organised tour stops here is to break the long journey as we head to the east coast of the island. We arrive here late in the afternoon in time to settle into the Hotel Plaza and head out for a meal at a local Paladar, a family home where they have been granted a licence to serve meals to visitors. On this occasion we get served a fairly standard Cuban menu but with the inclusion of goat meat, which I haven’t seen anywhere else in Cuba yet. The Hotel Plaza has probably seen better days but it seems to be where tour parties are taken as there are ... read more
Not Everyone Gets To Pose With Their Own Statue!
Che Watches Over The Bank Of Credit And Commerce

Tot: 0.218s; Tpl: 0.008s; cc: 12; qc: 83; dbt: 0.1422s; 1; m:jupiter w:www (; sld: 2; ; mem: 1.7mb