Goodbye Caribbean!

Written by Sam Van den Haute aka CheckOutSam

Four hours after the glorious night in Disco Ayala in Trinidad, I woke up in a sweltering room. Life in Cuba is never quiet, because at eight o'clock in the morning I woke up with the sounds of horseshoes walking on the cobblestone streets of Trinidad.
I stayed in bed for a little longer and tried to close my eyes so I would still be able to sleep a little, but by ten o'clock I decided to really wake up, since I clearly was not going to sleep anymore.

Sam Van den Haute CheckoutSam

Hi, I'm Sam, the blogger behind CheckOutSam!

Sam Van den Haute has been a full-time world traveler for ten years and has therefore gained a lot of travel and lifestyle inspiration on all continents. Do you still have questions after reading this blog? Ask them in the comments section or send me a message at [email protected] and I'll be happy to help you wherever I can!

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The gorgeous and unspoilt Varadero!

The gorgeous and unspoilt Varadero!

After I had a huge breakfast everyone was still asleep.
I decided to explore the city on my own, as I didn’t do that yet and it was already my last day in this romantic village.

Personally, I found Trinidad to be one of the nicest towns. Partly because it was so small, partly because it was so authentic.

Once you come in the city center, you’ll find nothing but streets made of cobblestones. Along these streets you can look inside the homes of the curious locals or just watch the beautiful colonial houses and buildings.

After wandering the many markets for a while, I paid one CUC to enter one of the most famous buildings in Trinidad. The yellow San Francisco church, which know was a museum about the Cuban revolution. It was a little similar to the Museum of the Revolution in Havana. To be honest I did not find it very interesting and I left the museum soon for what it was. I did like that you could climb up the tower to get some great views over Trinidad though!

The San Francisco church in Trinidad

The San Francisco church in Trinidad

After making quite some pictures from up there, I wandered around the city a little longer before I returned to the casa. Everyone had finally woken up, so we went to eat a pizza together.

The rest of the day we didn’t do very much. I suppose that has a lot to do with the headaches of Maaike and Sanna. We chatted almost all day and enjoyed our last evening together. Because tomorrow I would leave for Varadero and from there on I would eventually fly back home to Belgium.

The next day, I was picked up by a taxi collectivo at nine o’clock in the morning to go to my final destination.

This time the taxi was a lot smaller. It actually was just a normal car. Luckily there were only four of us. After having exchanged some hugs and sweet words with my companions, I crawled into the cramped car and we left for the most touristic place in Cuba; Varadero.

After five minutes of driving, I started to smell an awful scent.

I looked behind me and saw that something in the trunk had started smoking. I tapped the driver’s shoulder to warn him and immediately fantasized about my luggage being completely destroyed by fire.

When the driver stopped and opened the trunk, he just he took out a knife and cut the wires of one of the music boxes. Problem solved and a disaster avoided!

It took my and my Collectivo companions a little over three hours to arrive in Varadero and be dropped off at our casa’s.

The casa that I had reserved was fully booked, but the owner knew another girl down the street with another casa.
Varadero is probably the most expensive place to stay in Cuba. Instead of 15 CUC for a single room, I had to pay 25 CUC here.

Luckily, I was in Varadero only for one night!

The clock ticked one o’clock, and my tummy started to growl. Before I found myself something to eat, I wanted to check out the beach though.

Varadero has some of Cuba's best beaches.

Varadero has some of Cuba’s best beaches.

Varadero is known for its gorgeous beaches and that should not come as a surprise! I had been travelling through the Caribbean for two months now, but this beach honestly was a beauty!

I expected a lot more tourists here. Back in Belgium people told me Varadero wasn’t worth to visit because it’s too expensive and it is crowded with annoying tourists. I probably visited Varadero at a good time, because I could almost see no tourists!
The wild palm trees were still standing and they gave a lot of shade on the beautiful white sand carpet. In more popular destinations (Punta Cana, Cancun) the palm trees were plucked out and replaced by huge hotels.

When I walked a little further I saw some more parasols and a few hotels, but all in all I couldn’t say that it was touristy at all.

My new casa mama told me that there is not that much to see in Varadero besides the beaches.
Along the busy, main road of Varadero I found a cheap place where I ate a pizza both for lunch and for dinner. Afterwards, I planned on searching an internet hotspot to inform my mum that I was heading home.

The Internet is a scarce commodity in Cuba and I had to ask my casa mama for help because I just could not find an internet spot on my own.
Elsewhere in Cuba, I always found the internet hotspots because you see that these spots are crowded by both locals and tourists trying to stay in touch with home.

Fortunately, they told me that there was a place nearby where I could buy a 1 CUC card for 30 minutes.
After I bought the internet pass, I had to walk a little further to get to a park where there was an internet connection and then finally I could start searching the world wide web.

Two months later I would come back home in Belgium once again. Traveling is fun, but I’m always happy to get back home again.
I love to see my great friends and family again after I have missed them for so long. Besides them, I have to admit that I’m also secretly craving some Belgian fries right now…

The gorgeous and unspoilt Varadero!

The gorgeous and unspoilt Varadero!



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