Hasta la vista Cuba

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It’s now Thursday morning and after 7 days of fairly mixed weather, I’m now on my way to the airport to get my flight home, and I can honestly say this holiday has been one of the best I’ve been on.

I went on a two day tour to the south of the island at the weekend including a visit to Che Guevara’s memorial at Santa Clara, a hotel stop over near Cienfuegos and then a quick tour around Trinidad. The memorial was absolutely beautiful with plaques on the wall depicting the faces of all the members of Che’s troop …it was a really fitting tribute to a legendary revolutionary who dedicated his life to fighting for the people of South America.

Cienfuegos was not very special really but when we moved onto Trinidad the next day, we got a glimpse of the real Cuba with its narrow cobbled streets and beautiful architecture, albeit very old. Trinidad is the oldest city in Cuba and is well worth a visit.

During this trip we also went on a 4km hike through the hills and forests around Trinidad which form Parque Guanayara The centre piece of the park was a spectacular waterfall and beautiful lake.

The hotel I stayed at in Varadero was Brisas del Caribe, as mentioned in a previous post. When I first arrived, I was struck by the amount of Russians staying there. In fact for most of the week I was the only Brit staying at the hotel, not that this was a problem, I made friends with a lovely group of Canadiians. Canada is only a three hour flight away so Cuba is a destination of choice for many and I must say, in all my travels I haven’t met a more friendly bunch of people, so laid back and down to earth.

Having had no major dramas all holiday, two hours before I was due to leave the hotel, I somehow managed to fall forward onto a red hot BBQ grill and, instinctively putting my hands out to brace myself, gave.myself a nasty burn, which was compounded by the fact that I initially couldn’t seem to get the hotel nurse to give me anything to relieve the pain without payment. Eventually, an intervention by the hotel manager, got me seen to although I now have a nice little blister forming on the palm of my hand. At least the pain is beginning to subside. Not really what I wanted before a ten hour flight.

As we head for the airport, my disappointment at leaving this beautiful country really can’t be put into words. I don’t think there’s any doubt that I’ll be back soon.

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