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This trip was a different kind of trip...  Not an all-inclusive resort type of trip like most Canadians do in Cuba. 

We flew to Holguin and rented a car to discover Cuba’s inland.  First impression: the roads are deserted as most Cubans do not own a car.

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Second impression that you quickly get: there are no grocery stores around.  Where do we buy food?  You quickly learn that there are a number of street vendors, and small governmental stores that provide –very- basic items: cookies, rum, etc.  Restaurants or casa particulars are your best bet to have a tasty meal prepared for you (and it’s very cheap!).

DSC_0165 DSC_0338 DSC_0361 DSC_0416 We are amazed by the sugar cane fields that we drive through, mostly used for the production of rum.  The best parts of this trip are our overnight stays in Casa Particulares (government accredited homes -owned by real Cubans- willing to rent out a room or a section of their house for the night). 
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Speaking very good Spanish, we had an amazing time sitting in their living rooms talking about life and most importantly, mourning the death of Hugo Chavez  (March 5th 2013).  This man was very respected by Cubans, and people we talked to were worried about an uncertain future.  Would the Castro-Chavez partnership last?

It was quite a drive to get to Trinidad, Playa Ancon and Parque National de Topes de Collante, but it was well worth the drive.  For the first time on this trip, we saw tourists (some wearing bikinis on the streets) and were amazed to see another facet of Cuba.

We will greatly remember the amazing beaches, the Fidel Castro and Che Guevara signs all over the courntry, the good rum

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