Havana is Better With Tourist
There are times when a country full of foreigners is better than meeting the locals. Christmas season tourists, the city of Havana, Cuba is filling up, in the last three days this city has changed from boring to interesting. Two week ago I was seldom saw a foreigner in Central Havana walking around, since last weekend it has been filling up at an incredible rate.
I believe, high season has come to Cuba, I will speculate it will be busy here from December 15 until about February first, maybe until the first of March.
Havana Habana Cuba Wednesday, December 16, 2009
By Andres Hidalgo with editing
Two Major Changes
1. Women are now sitting around everywhere asking if I want a Novia, or looking directly at me and giving me a long-distance kiss. If you say hello, they are instantly to consider this an invitation to talk, generally with horrible Spanish. I am not sure where the sudden surge came from, I think I know why.
2. An older group of single men and women between the ages of 25 and 60 are populating all the Casa Particulares.
This is Not the Backpacker Group
This is not a groups of 25 Dollars per day travelers, although many are here for two to three weeks, many for over a month, they appear more than willing to pay 10 Dollar for lunch and consider 1-2 dollars cheap for a beer. The starting budget for Cuba, not including the flight has to be 50 Cuban CUC per day; this is about the minimum the ordinary person will surely spend. I have been spending about 25-35 CUC per day. One CUC is roughly one USA Dollar.
Cabarets, swimming pools, and tour groups this place has come alive with tourist. Generally, Cuba is beginning to remind me of 7 day, 6 nights, all-inclusive trips to Cancun, Mexico, this is generally a place for backpacker who spend 100 dollars per day. Strangely, many people call themselves backpacker paying over 100 dollars per day. Everyone now calls themselves a Backpacker, so truly the term is losing meaning.
25 CUC is the standard price of a Casa Particulare room, and the quality varies greatly. I learned of an internet site called Cuban Junky, that is probably a great resource. Unfortunately, at 8 CUC per hour to use the internet, I do not want to go look at this internet site here inside Cuba.
With a lot of research prior to coming to Cuba, intensive reading, somehow learning about the ins and out of Cuba prior to arrival. A person who is willing to spend 100 dollars per day could probably have a great time wining and dining Cuban women, going to expensive restaurants and drinking beer around swimming pools until their hearts content.
I do not expect to see this group in Central or South America, however many are going to Thailand, I am sure Cancun is a good fit, maybe Playa del Carmen.
Cuba has been good, but lonely, I happy Andy the HoboTraveler.com agreed to allow me to come in and write for him. The prices in Cuba makes it uncomfortable for long term travel, but a great 100-300 dollar per day Vacation Country. Not all countries are made for Backpackers; Cuba is straight-line tourist package, no danger, no hassle, no problems, plenty of service providing women.
The enjoyment in Cuba is not in making friends with Cubans, it is in partying with the other tourist from all over the world.
I am going stop writing, I will return to Haiti soon, and discuss the pros and cons of Cuba with Andy, and he will be sending out a newsletter with links to all the photos taken in Cuba. There is an overabundance of photos for Cuba, this is for sure one the best countries for Photos, with a never ending variety of faces, black, white, rich and poor, anything is possible in Cuba.
I would love to hang out in Cuba, if I was a millionaire from Canada. Please think about this, I have not exchanged emails with one Cuban person, however have with about five foreigners, I am here, but not here, this is Cuba.
Andres Hildago, December 2009
Havana is Better With Tourist
I've heard that Cuba's mandatory departure tax is 25 CUC.
Thought I'd pass it along.