Transfer and controls at the airport
After our stay in Playa del Carmen, we moved to Cancun again for three days. From there we took the airplane to Havana. Our airplane had a delay of 2 hours. We heard that apparently this would happen often, because the airport in Havana is very small and the capacity is yet not high enough.
After we arrived in Havana, we had to pass many control points. One control point was for the visa. (You need a visa for your stay there. I ordered it two months before we started our trip here: http://www.cubavisa.net/. It was the cheapest one.) Sometimes they also want to check if you have a verification of your foreign insurance (preferably, you have a copy in Spanish, you just have to ask the insurance for it.) The control stations took long but I made it through without having problems. My friend had more issues than I did. They didn’t let her through the last immigration station, because she spend a long time in Mexico. Fortunately, she speaks perfectly Spanish, and she could explain her situation to the guard. After half an hour, they let her in. Of course our baggage now was with all the collecting-baggage that wasn’t picked up yet. The luggage belt was very small so it took one hour for us to get them. It was very stressful, but we made it. Outside the airport was a money exchange office. We changed enough money there so we didn’t had to search for another one later. Than we took a taxi to our accommodation. Don’t let them mess around with you, the taxi prices are always negotiable.
Hotel / Homestay
We already booked our accommodation before we started our trip through homestay. We were lucky, because our host Yanepsy was very nice. She showed us many beautiful spots, good restaurants, supermarkets where we could buy water, how to get Wifi with a Wifi card and she offered us that she could prepare us breakfast and evening meals for just 6 CUC (~ 5 USD) per day. The room was small but pretty and we had our own bathroom. Everything was clean.
Temperature, Trips and Tips
We stayed there during February, that’s why the temperature wasn’t too hot but also not too cold. For us it was perfect. The sun was always shining and we had 30 degrees but it was also windy so it didn’t feel like 30 degrees.
The first thing we wanted to do was to buy a Wifi card. We arrived at Sunday and all the official stores (they looked like very small white cabins) were closed. We asked some Cubans if there were other possibilities to buy them and they sent us to an unofficial seller. We paid the double of the price put it still wasn’t expensive. We paid 2 CUC instead of 1 CUC for 1 hour of internet. There were internet parks where you could log in with your password and Wifi access code. Just in that area you had Internet. It was such a strange feeling, because we used to have internet all the time we wanted: in a café or restaurant or at the hotel. For us the most important thing was to calm down our parents and say them that we arrived in Havana. That’s why we bought the cards as soon as possible.
On our first day, we just explored a little bit of our surroundings and went to bed early.
The day after we wanted to visit a beach called Marlin Marina Cayo Largo, not far from our accommodation. We asked our host how to get there and she told us which bus we could take. The bus drove along the seaside and made stops at the different beaches.
Of course, we wanted to make a vintage car trip. There are trips, which include different stops. It was a little bit expensive but we negotiated a cheaper price with the driver. For me it was nothing special, I guess I wouldn’t do it again.
Havana was the most beautiful stay we had in Cuba. I liked the colorful houses and cars, the people and amazing beaches. Maybe it was also because of our host, she was very nice and took care of us. In addition I loved her little dog Nana (don’t know if i wrote it right).
After our stay in Havana our next stops were Moron and Varadero. It wasn’t that easy to get there. I will write another post about our experience there soon.