28 December: Varadero

indi's picture


Breakfast and A Stroll around Varadero Downtown

We woke up a bit late, and the breakfast buffet was almost finished. The hotel staff really adored Noe, and we had a conversation about toddlers and babies. One staff had a 25 months old baby named David, and she breastfed the baby for 6 months.


We went back to the room to prepare ourselves for a walk, and I watched Cuban TV channel. It has the feeling of the old-time TVRI. There were four channels. One channel has governmental meetings shown on TV. The other two channels are educational channel, with programs ranging from science, technology, open university, language course, mathematics, and of course, the politics of cuba, in which a lot of statements by Fidel are quoted.

Then we walked outside. The weather was not really good, with very thick cloud and drizzles. We decided to walk around Varadero, but the drizzle made everything so gloomy and ugly. Nevertheless the beach still looked beautiful with nice turquoise color. Indi was amazed with a lot of the cars of the 50s scattered around the street, with a shiny good condition. The streets in Varadero is surprisingly clean, the residents seems to have a sense of belonging to the place, that even without direct economic incentive, they keep the place clean.



We saw a school bus donated by the American students.


Lobster Lunch and Great Live Music by "Gala"

Finally we went to Barracuda Diving Center so that Yodhi could make an enquiry about the diving program.



After that we went to the next door restaurant. But we were afraid of mediocre food, so we had to ask other tourist first on whether the food is good. Luckily, the tourist that we met there were quite satisfied. So we decided to just eat there.


When we enter the restaurant, a live acoustic music was playing Guantanamera, and some senior tourists were dancing to the tunes.

I ordered small grilled lobster, while Indi got roast chicken and Yodhi ordered grilled calamari. We decided to just have cervezas, because they cost the same as water. It was bucanero cervezas and produced by the government, but they tasted quite OK.



Before we got our meal, the band approached us, and we made a request for them to play classics of Cuban music. And it turned out that they played really beautifully, with four parts harmony and great "tres" solo. They brought "tres" instrument which is a modified guitar, with three rows of double strings, each row is tuned to the same note. It has a twangy sound. We really liked the band so we bought their CD. The band is called Gala.

To the Beach

After lunch we decided to take a taxi back to hotel so that we could spend the rest of the afternoon on the beach. Unlike Cancun where the access to the beach was limited by resort development, it was very easy for anyone to walk from the street to the beach. Our spot was only two blocks away from the hotel and the weather was splendid!

The water was only waist deep from the shore to about 200 meters outward so it was very safe to just dip yourself in the turquoise water. We put Noe in some floatation cuffs we got at Wal-Mart in Mexico but he was completely terrified with the sound of waves crashing on us.

While we took turn swimming until sunset, Noe was busy playing with whatever he could find around our mat. He was not moving much from where he stood but he kept throwing sand against the wind and got himself covered with sand.

After sunset we jumped into shower and later had dinner as La Casa de la Miel. Indi was completely disappointed to find tasteless Pollo Asado, unlike what Yodhi enjoyed the night before. We met Oscar and his wife who waited our table and also a couple of French Canadians who were visiting Cuba for the 20th time!

It was quite a tiring day so we went to bed quite early as we wanted to do something special tomorrow.


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