Thursday, September 20, 2007

Back From Paradise...

Marc and I are back from our amazing trip in Varadaro, Cuba!!! We stayed at the Paradisus Princesa del Mar (formerly Sandals) which we booked through I had found the resort for our honeymoon in St-Lucia last year through Tripadvisor so I did my research again on Tripadvisor too - I LOVE that website! We are 2 for 2! It was the BEST trip!

The grounds of the resort were lush - lots of exotic flowers, plants, and trees everywhere you looked! The pool was HUGE and well maintained. I am allergic to chlorine but I guess with the salt water they only had to use the minimum amount because I didn't have any reaction. In the pool, there was also a swim-up-bar that was GREAT - I didn't even have to get out of the pool to order a Mojito! The beach was the BEST! The sand was white and the water was the most beautiful color of turquoise AND the perfect temperature - not too warm and not too cool - just refreshing! The resort is pretty much at the end of the Varadero peninsula so we didn't see too many people from other resorts wandering over to our beach so it felt very private! The resort itself is also "couples-only" so there was no drunken scenes or people getting out of hand even if it was all-inclusive, not that we saw anyways, so we had alot of peace and quiet even if the resort was 1/3 full. The rooms themselves were pretty big and the bathrooms were quiet spacious. We had a room that was labeled "garden view" but we still had a view of the ocean from the balcony of our room. As for the food, we didn't have high expectations because of the reviews I had read about Cuba, as well as, the comments we had gotten from friends but we were pleasantly surprised! Our resort had 7 restaurants - 1 was a buffet, 1 was a restaurant reserved for concierge guests only, and the remaining 5 were "a la carte". We thought the Italian and French restaurants were just okay and we really didn't like the buffet. Breakfast and Lunch were served in the buffet restaurant but we found out that the Snack Bar also had breakfast and lunch and we went there every day for the rest of our trip - it was really good! Our favourite restaurants were the Japanese and the Cuban - both we soooo good that we ended up going back to both! Wednesday nights the resort hosts a Cuban Gala in the courtyard and we reserved for that - the food the excellent - we had lobster and chicken! As for excursions, we only ended up going on the Seafari (we wanted to do the Jeep Tour but we both had forgotten to pack any running shoes) but it was worth every extra penny we spent! The tour company picks you up at the hotel and drives you to the marina where a catamaran was waiting (complete with an open bar and Cuban music!). Our first stop was to swim with the dolphins, then snorkeling, and then a stop at a small island called Cayo Blanco where we were served Lobster for lunch. We spent the rest of the afternoon here on the beach and then the catamaran brought us back to the marina.

We loved our trip sooo much that we have already decided we're going back next year! I can't wait!


Kristin said...

Your trip sounds absolutely fantastic. Maybe someday I'll have the opportunity to travel to Cuba - I think that would be just grand.

I look forward to seeing your pics next year!

Helene said...

Love the pictures. That must have been a great trip.