Trinidad; no one puts Irish girls in the corner!
Trip Start Dec 30, 2013
21Trip End Mar 25, 2014
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Nine hours later we arrived into Trinidad. Dying for a nice day at the beach we decided to head to Playa Ancon (the best beach on Cuba's Caribbean Coast) to find an all inclusive resort for a couple of nights. Playa Ancon is only 16km out for Trinidad so it wasn't long before we were all checked into Hotel Club Amigo Ancon and out on the beach with a cocktail in hand!! Very quickly the planned 2 nights turned into 3 nights when we figured we could do a day trip to Trinidad!
Once the sun went down we got ready and went for a buffet dinner. After some of our experiences in Santiago the food was amazing!! Every night there is a show in the pool bar. Very quickly we were being serenaded by a young Cuban singer followed by some very authentic salsa dancing! Given that we were reducing the average age demographic by about 10 years it was time for bed.
Day 55 - Saturday, 22 February
Following a nice breakfast buffet we headed into Trinidad for some administrative duties i.e. The ATM and the internet cafe to make contact with the world. However this was the designated beach day so there was no time for dilly dallying and we were back to Playa Ancon! Tomorrow was for culture activities!!
As wifi access in Cuba is basically non-existent we hadn't a hope of being able to stream the Ireland vs England 6 Nations match. We had to rely on text updates from Jen's Dad as we lazed on the sun loungers at the beach. Life is tough eh?! Raging at the result we weren't able to start any celebrations so for the next few hours we moved only to sample the lunch buffet and a short spin on a paddle boat. In the late afternoon we moved our weary bodies to the pool and found some very comfortable stools in the water beside the bar...cocktails? Sure why not!!
That evening we had dinner in the fish restaurant in the hotel and after a few beverages we decided it was time to try our first Cuban cigar. A few spluttering coughs later the general consensus was that it was good...although I don't see a repeat in Dublin! It was then time to sample some Cuban nightlife so we grabbed a cab and headed into Casa de la Musica, an alfresco Cuban nightclub held in the main square in Trinidad. Within 5 minutes we were all up being shown the art of salsa dancing by the locals. Let's just say we immersed ourselves in Cuban culture and a great night was had by all...
Day 56 - Sunday, 23 February
Sunday morning brought some weary heads from the night before but it was the designated day of culture in Trinidad so it was time to just suck it up and get moving. Trinidad is a one-of-a-kind, perfectly preserved Spanish colonial settlement where the clocks stopped ticking in the 1850s. Built on sugar fortunes in the 19th century the entire town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988.
After breakfast we headed into town to the markets and some souvenir shopping. After a short stroll around the markets and suffering with the searing heat we stumbled upon mass in the main cathedral. With mass half over we decided to stay until the end. There was a full percussion band and choir singing as they were incredible. It was a really different experience. With the sun being a bit too much to bear we went back to the hotel to chill by the pool for a couple of hours.
Freshly revived from our snooze we headed back into Trinidad to do the evening walking tour. It took us around the town and off the beaten track. With the sun setting the colonial buildings looked picturesque and on a relaxing Sunday evening the locals sat chatting on doorsteps or playing chess on the street corners...Trinidad really has stopped in time.
A buffet dinner satisfied us after what was a pretty long but very interesting day. 10pm saw lights out!
Day 57 - Monday, 24 February
It was time to leave the beautiful Playa Ancon and Trinidad behind and head for Cienfuegos. With Cienfuegos only 80km away we had breakfast and were on the road.