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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Havana, Cuba

May 8, 2017 - Cienfuegos to Havana

Last day in Cienfuegos. We enjoyed breakfast at 8 and were pretty relaxed as apart from changing some money, we don't have anything planned for today apart from catching the bus at 4:15. We thought we might see about going to the beach....Rancho Luna. A few days ago lady in the tour office told me the cost is 10CUC each way for a taxi, about 18k and takes about 20 minutes. We walked into the city and found a bank. There was a huge line outside and people were being let in as someone came out. I tried the ATMs around the corner. The two I...

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May 3, 2017 - Havana PHOTOS TO BE ADDED

The owner of our apartment said she would be here to collect our data at 9:30am and I was well and truly awake when she arrived. She was very helpful with connecting to wifi (even though there is wifi to the apartment, you have to buy a card from a shop that has a user name and pin. You use your own wifi password first and then add the user name and pin). She is also arranging to take us to the bus or shared taxi tomorrow. Apparently shared taxis go from the bus station. It was then time to hit the streets. We are in the old town so just...

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May 2, 2017 - Tijuana to Havana PHOTOS TO BE ADDED

Big day today as we fly from Tijuana to CUBA however we spend a whole day doing it. We fly out of Tijuana at 9:35am and arrive in Havana at 10:15pm if all goes to plan. We were up early as Bibi had ordered her friend with a taxi to pick us up at 7:00am. We were ready, the price was agreed as US$7 and off we went. It was a reasonable length journey and it was interesting to see the city along the way. A car in front of us looked as though its left back wheel was going to fall off. The roads are in pretty bad repair however seemed a bit...

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Apr 16, 2017 - Havana

Our first full day in Havana started with breakfast on the patio. Soon after we headed up to some shops to try to source an internet card but to no avail. People kept giving us detailed instructions in Spanish (or perhaps they were saying 'get lost you bloody foreigner') which didn't help us in any way. We followed some instructions that I had downloaded along Calle 17. This street was full of mansions in various states of repair. Some were suffering from genteel neglect, others were ready for demolition while yet more were being restored,...

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Mar 3, 2017 - making comparisons

To our guide Havana is a big city. And indeed compared to the rest of her country it is. But 20% of the only 12 million Cuban people live here, a city that is significant, but not overwhelming. Marialina keeps warning us about crowds and bad traffic, but compared to London, Paris, New York, there's no comparison. There are few traffic lights and our bus driver zips through intersections with impunity. He's not a risky driver; he knows that there is never anyone coming the other way. We had a great lecture from a musician who taught us 500...

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Feb 2, 2017 - Vinales to Havana

We woke the next morning to clouds which turned to sunny breaks as we drove norte on the paved 241. The road turned to connecting potholes as we drove along CN. It was a little better through Santa Lucia. The toll for the causeway had been removed and potholes were starting to appear. Mangrove swamps bordered the road as we approached. Once across the causeway beautiful sandy beaches appeared. We stopped at one walking through the short expanse of bush. Nary a soul was there! At the end of the road was a restaurant, changerooms, the so...

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Trip Journal


Val's Cuba

Feb 2, 2017 - Havana

Much to the distress of our GPS, we entered Havana from the northwest corner along Avenida STA which became ST 5. It was so simple....and straight. In no time at all we were on the Malecon. We found a Casa Particulaire for 30 CUC'S. The hotels are now all over 100 CUC'S sice the prices went up Jan. 1st. The casa is on the 2nd floor of an old colonial house that has been devided into apartments. Rocking chairs line the hallway. A huge old armoire sits along one wall of our room. A small desk and a queen-size bed sit along another. Huge...

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Val's Cuba

Dec 13, 2016 - La Havane

Jour 4 : La Havane Une belle journée de marche typique du centre névralgique d’une grande métropole. Nous avons passé la journée à sillonner le centre de La Havane, surtout la vieille section et les artères principales du centre de la ville. Les efforts de restauration majeure de la dernière décennie font leurs effets. Certains des plus beaux édifices redécouvrent leurs splendeurs et nous permettent d’imaginer l’ensemble totale avec ceux qui feront partie d’une prochaine vague. La Havane pré-1959 devait être d’une richesse...

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RouleCuba2016

Nov 11, 2016 - Our man in Havana, ok, our man and woman in Havana

First impressions The starting point is always based on either preconception or hyped expectation, and in the case of Havana it was the former: a teeming steaming third world city crumbling from lack of investment, minimal traffic mainly comprising 1950 chevvies in garish technicolor belching out clouds of exhuast fumes, and loud street music round every corner. So, half right then. But the charm of the many often tree-lined squares surrounded with colonial stone buildings and churches, the grid of narrow streets shaded by tall tenement...

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Jul 20, 2016 - Culture and History Today

We started the day with a tour of old Havana with Spanish forts and cobblestone streets. Next on the schedule was a visit to the Compas Dance & Music Company, founded in 2004, trains locals to dance and play instruments. The music and dance is a combination of African, Cuban and Spanish influences. The Mafia was very active in Havana from the times of Prohibition in the U.S. until the overthrow of the Batista government in 1959. Much of the activity was centered around the Hotel Nacional (a World Heritage Site) and controlled by Meyer...

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Cuba Adventure 2016

Apr 29, 2016 - Electricity back to the neighborhood

Electricity Finally Back in My Neighborhood Last night the electricity returned to my neighborhood after 10 days without. What a wonderful evening. Many neighborhoods still lack electricity. Still no new water to the town; we're living from reserves and what tank trucks bring along with bottled water and water from a solar powered treatment plant brought in by the army. My rotary club has been receiving donations of food, water, cushions, tents, etc. We have distributed these to needy families. Thank you so much from those of you and the...

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Going Down the Road

Apr 22, 2016 - April 21, 2016 Earthquake

APRIL 21 EARTHQUAKE To all my family and many many friends. I am okay. It was a really strong quake and destroyed many homes and condo towers. Several will be condemned. People are living in the streets, parks , schools, churches. Many still require some shade or tent. Fortunately it hasn't rained, yet. Emergency shelters such as tents are needed al along the north coast. Rotary is partnering with the Shelter Box program to send emergency containers. I am working with Rotarians and friends to help how we can. Help is now arriving...

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Going Down the Road

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