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“Such happy memories!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Valle de Vinales

Valle de Vinales
Vinales, Cuba
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Ranked #1 of 9 Attractions in Vinales
Type: Parks, Valleys, Outdoors
Attraction details
Gloucestershire
Top Contributor
104 reviews 104 reviews
49 attraction reviews
Reviews in 51 cities Reviews in 51 cities
94 helpful votes 94 helpful votes
“Such happy memories!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

A real highlight of our Cuban trip, and a good contrast to Havana and Trinidad.

Definitely worth at least a three-night stay, if time permits, rather than a day trip.

The valley of Vinales, and the very small town of the same name, are looked after with pride by the local people. The whole area had a cared-for look, and we were lucky enough to visit in warm, sunny, settled weather, when it was at its best.

Very early in our stay at Vinales we were fortunate in meeting a young man called Jose who asked if he could guide us round this area. He speaks only Spanish (we have suggested that he learns some English) but as we had a Spanish speaker with us it wasn't a problem. Jose turned out to be honest, kind, and a very good ambassador for his country. Here's what we did:

The first day we went walking through the tobacco fields with a sort of running commentary about the cultivation of this crop, interspersed with lots of information about the local fauna and flora and the general lives of the farmers. Jose was very patient with our friend who could only walk slowly due to asthma problems, and we ended up at an idyllic sort of hillside hut where we could relax with drinks before the return journey. We then went for coffee at someone else's home - Jose has a friend, Aldo (also a lovely person) - who has a taxi (a 1950s American car). After coffee we visited some of the limestone caves in the area for a short boat trip on an underground lake. After a rest at the hotel, Aldo collected us and took us to Vinales where Jose's mother-in-law cooked supper for us at the Casa Rosendo y Lila (where Jose can be contacted). She really made an effort - lovely savoury corn cakes, soup, salad, beans and rice, fish, and fruit salad - far too much for us to eat though we did our best. A great evening.

On the second day two of us went riding to explore a different part of the valley. It's forty years since I've been on a horse but felt very safe, mostly because we didn't break out of a gentle plod ... Jose took us up to a stunning viewpoint (we had to get off and walk the last bit, while the horses rested). The sun gets extremely hot, so hats are advised. We enjoyed it so much and will always remember it as a great experience. We then went into Vinales town later in the day - this seems a very easy-going, laid back sort of place, with small painted houses, some souvenir stalls, coffee places, and a particularly good restaurant, El Olivo.

And then, on the third day, we had to leave ... but with such wonderful memories!

Visited February 2013
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Prague
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Vinales - a piece of "lost world"”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2013

Vinales is definitely one of the most charming places on the whole island. The nature - mogotes, wild vegetation, breathtaking views, small farms....you must love it! I really recommend a walking tour, a guide is not necessary- you can just walk wherever you want and visit any fam, the locals are very welcoming. A horseback tour is also possible - but be carefull and have a look at the horses before you decide, some of them don´t look very healthy.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Javea
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Vinales”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

When you see the valley, a patchwork of burnt orange and greens, with a backdrop of mogotes, it's obvious why it's a UNESCO heritage.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
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19 reviews 19 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Vinales”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2013

Stayed in a Casa Partiular, ie a house belonging to a Cuban. The family were wonderful and helpful, and the food was the best we had in Cuba, they even had some red wine for us.
Downside quite basic rooms, hard beds and no running hot water although there was a sort of a shower with warm water.

Visited February 2013
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Regina, Canada
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
21 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“World Class”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2013

This valley is truly a world class site. The lushness combined with the one of a kind magotes make it a magical place.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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