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resently back from varadero our excursions

calgary alberta
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51 posts
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resently back from varadero our excursions

We just got back this week, thought we would share our favourite memories, excursions.

Varadero - we walked the entire main drag, twice, exploring the markets, stores, and the Parque Josone. We found the main large market to be the most expensive and stuck to the smaller markets for souvenir shopping. Our favourite restaurant in Varadero was Albacora. My husband and daughter rented a scooter twice and drove up and down the penisula, they loved it and thought it was worth the price paid.

Matanzas Bellamar caves - we did this trip (on our own, not tour) on a Sunday afternoon, the caves are really interesting, however, it is like a sauna in there, make sure you bring lots of water, and the hike back up (150 stairs) was killer. Afterwords, hang around the park to the back, it is filled with Cubans enjoying their Sunday afternoon, dancing, drinking etc. makes for a really enjoyable afternoon.

Havana- we loved this trip, we did an overnight private tour. We had previously contacted Voy Havana for information to help us out with this trip, he introduced us to his friend Jorge who is a guide. Jorge was an excellent guide and helped us to arrange a private van, including driver (we had been trying to arrange a rental, but this worked out to be a better deal), our accommodations in a Casa Particular even our dining arrangements, which were all excellent choices. The casa particular was in an apartment bldg overlooking the malecon with beautiful view and the couple who ran the place were very very nice people. They felt like family and we only stayed there one night. We spent the first day exploring most of the museums, Capitol Bldg, rum factory etc etc. and we spent the entire second day exploring Old Havana. All I can say is how breathtaking the history is in this City. Our driver was a very nice man, and again he felt like family, we had him for a total of three days driving us around, and he looked after our things that we left in the van. We were travelling with a grumpy teenaged girl and a very grumpy 1 yr old, our driver never complained, he actually pushed around our little one in the stroller sometimes. Our hats off to Jorge also, an excellent guide, as sometimes, we straggled and sometimes our crying grumpy baby would drown out his explanations, he also dealt with this with good humour and after only knowing him for a short time, he felt like family. Travelling with children, another couple and ourselves who like to do tours on our schedule, is why we chose to do a private tour, and if you are with a group of people it does not cost that much more than the group tours.

Colon and surrounding towns - we decided one day to drive out to smaller non tourist areas just to see the countryside. (we had our van and driver for three days) Very interesting day, we tried to find a restaurant to eat lunch at but they were very hard to find. We also needed bathroom break, after drinking cervasas, but again the driver said we did not want to use the gas station. We saw an off duty Transtur bus parked by some houses on the side of the highway so our driver stopped to ask him if he knew where we could find a restaurant, but he did not know, he also asked him if he knew the people in the house and if we could use their bathroom, they said yes. Take note all you people who say that the Cuban people have their hands out for money!!! When we had used their bathroom, my friend wanted to give them a couple of CUCS, they REFUSED to take it!!! A simple gracias was all they wanted.

I could go on and on about our favourite memories, excursion etc. but enough said.

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Winnipeg, Canada
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1. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

carlosanddeanna, how expensive was it to hire the driver and guide for Havanna. Just curious. Thanks

calgary alberta
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2. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

We had the car and driver for three days, this included gas and so many kms. It was not really expensive as we split the cost with another couple. The van was for 9 passengers, it was new and air cond. The price worked out to be cheaper than a rental of the same van, not including driver or gas and it worked out to be cheaper than a taxi van. The driver was with us as long as we needed him for the day or night. So this is what would make it cheaper as taxis only want to go so long in a day.

Staffordshire...
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3. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

Yeah,but how much was this in CUC??????

calgary alberta
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4. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

email me at carlos33@telus.net and ill give you a break down and emails you will need and any other info you need

United Kingdom
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5. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

Hi, If anybody is considering doing anything independantly I would certainly suggest you contact Jorge (he is highly reccomendable), Friends of ours have recently returned from Cuba,Part of their stay was in Varadero and then Havana. Whilst in Havana they hired a Driver/Guide to show them around Havana, they enjoyed their time so much that they got the Guide;Jorge, to take them down to the Vinales Valley, they said that they had a really fun, enjoyable time, saw so much and places that they didn't know existed! also they had a great education. (they said it was definately the way to go)! There are places that they would like to go back to and new places that they would like to see so Jorge is now helping them to plan their next trip and arranging B&B's and hotels for them. We are now in contact with Jorge and are taking his advice in doing the same. You can email Jorge at:-jorgeguide2004@yahoo.es ~ or you can email me at lyn.parry1@ntlworld.com if you would like to ask any questions.

I am sure that Jorge will be happy to give any of you a quote for whatever it is you want to do and he will probably make suggestions about other things you could incorporate with your chosen trip, he has some fabulous ideas and his prices are very fair, (he will allow you to pick his brains!) ~ I think he will definately give you lots of ideas to think over, he has us, trouble is we now want to do so much but don't know how we will manage to fit it all in, Maybe we should plan a four week trip! lol (it's an idea though !!! lol).

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Cuba
Cuba
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Havana, Cuba
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6. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

Hi there:

First I would like to thank Deanna and Carlos for their extremely good words for my friends here. Not to say that LL is being also extremely nice with her kind words as well on my friend J.

I would like also to suggest Alskie & Richard to connect privately (if possible) with our fellow posters here when needing info on quotations given privately to them. I hope you understand that certain things should be treated directly.

LooneyLou and Carlosanddeanna I want to thank both of you for respecting the need of privacy in these cases. We really appreciate that.

Cuba
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7. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

carlosanddeanna

muy bueno

Please keep this post handy to reply to the many people that want to explore a bit off the beaten path and discover their own Cuban experiences.

Sounds like you have a great adventure and found a great guide to the wonders of Cuba.

Cheers

Mardi

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Cuba
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calgary alberta
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8. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

Thanks Mardi! We are missing Cuba already!

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Cuba
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Ontario
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9. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

great info

thanks so much

by the way nice name Mine is Deanna too

Montreal, Canada
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10. Re: resently back from varadero our excursions

isn't it amazing how welcoming and simply so accomodating the Cuban people are! Way to go Voy and Jorge. Can't wait to meet you guys )

Pina

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