Cuba Things to Do
Although Havana is exciting and all that, it's also crowded, loud and full of exhaust fumes. Open up any Cuba book and turn to the province of Pinar del Rio. Take a trip to Vinales and breathe the cleanest air around. The people of the countryside will not hound you for money or the purchase of questionable cigars. It's God's country. On a clear night, take a ride a mile or two from town, you'll swear you were in a planetarium. It's breathtaking. Also, don't miss the obligatory poolside photo of the valley from the Los Jazmines hotel. If you screw this photo up, it's time to change over to video!
Also, reference the same book and visit Las Terrazzas. It's in between Pinar del Rio city and Havana. There are lots of gorgeous places to see, it's a huge nature preserve. Lots of birds and scenery. The waterfall at Soroa is nice, too, but the stone steps (of which there must be thousands, or so it seems) are grueling for a pudgy gringo like me.
Pinar del Rio city has never appealed to me. There is usually an army of jineterOs at the outskirts of the city who try to get you to eat or sleep at their house. A nice gesture, but a little overwhelming. There are a few tobacco related places of interest and to the south a bit is the Vuelta Abajo, supposedly the mother land for tobacco growth. Alejandro Robaina still lives there and is arguably the most famous of the tobacco farmers. Phew, how's that?
I hope to have info on Maria La Gorda later this year, I'm hoping to dive there.
Oh yeah, Playa Jutias, to the North of Vinales is pretty nice, but take whatever you'll need. There's a fairly lame snack bar there and some bathrooms that's about it. The sand is nice and overall scenery is pretty sweet.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Horse Riding
Favorite thing: Pinar del Rio. The Cuban countryside is gorgeous and the campesinos are the friendliest of the friendly
Fondest memory: Marrying my wife, in Havana.
Sharing ice cold Cristal Beer with my Cuban buddies and cranking the hell out of my camera shutter.