We decided to take this trip to relax and treat ourselves. We both had not been to an all inclusive resort before. With us being fairly young we decided Cuba be our destination because we knew it was not going to be too expensive. We wanted to do different excursions and see the local towns. We went just the two of us for a week which, if were being honest seemed too long. If we went with other people it might be more enjoyable. We also went at a time that want not too busy. There seemed to not be a lot of people… and the people we did meet where from the UK and stay for 2 weeks.
With an all inclusive its nice because you dont have to worry about carrying around a purse/ wallet to pay for anything (at the resort). Many people bring things on their trips from home to give to the locals working at the resorts because they dont have as much stuff as we do. We connected with one of the local bartenders and she had even asked if we had anything extra that we could give her for her daughter(s). We are not sure if they are suppose to ask or if this is allowed but of course we gave her what we could. The same goes for the housekeepers. They really are amazing … folding the towels into different animals and really how loyal they are. The rooms did have a safe so we put all of our valuable in there but with all the clothes, toiletries and what ever else we had out were not touched.
The Resort we stayed at was the Ocean Varadero El Patriarca and it offered more than enough. The resort offers many different restaurants (buffet, Italian, gourmet international cuisine), Despacio Spa, gym, beach bar, pool bar and so much more. There is a total for 420 rooms that you can choose from ranging from Deluxe Room (2 adults & 2 children), Deluxe Privilege Room (Adults Only) and the Privilege Suite (Adults Only). Privilege rooms & services have more features including an exclusive pool and bar, discounts at Despacio Spa and personalized check-in and check-outs. The rooms include bath robes, slippers, VIP amenities, outdoor terrace and bar service with premium drinks. Each Privilege Room can accommodate up to 3 adults. The resort also offers wedding packages!
Anywhere you went it was beautiful. The scenery was perfect. On the day we got there we arrived and bused to the resort and didnt have all day so we looked around the resort, checked out the pool and walked to the beach. We were able to watch the sunset which was absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately this was the only real sunset we saw. It would be so warm during the day that it would rain around dinner time every night. The clouds would roll in and we were stay at the bar so it wasnt that bad.
If you have talked to anyone that has visited Cuba at an all inclusive resort you have most likely hear them say something about the food. It was of course different from what we are used to because it is a totally different country. They offered so much food. It wasnt bad but it was a little bland over all. There in a snack bar that puts out a menu and has a buffet around lunch time everyday. We found ourselves wanting a little snack like a granola bar but there wasnt anything small. So if you are a person that gets snacky then we recommend bringing a few things for yourself.
One excursion we did was the Catamaran. Its is a large boat that took us to swim with dolphins, snorkel and have lunch on a beautiful island. We were able to hang out on the island for a couple hours and of course we got burnt. Being on the both and island with the sun beaming off the water and us Canadians not used to this harsh sun. The unlimited drinks really help with numbing the sunburn pain.
The other excursion we took was into Havana. We took a bus to the city and the guide explained so much history in great detail. We had to stop to have a famous pina colada in a pineapple which was amazing. It was nice to just stop and relax in the middle of the drive. Once we got to Havana we did a walking tour to see the historic buildings. We stopped at a bar to grab a quick drink. We were also there for lunch which was more than enough. Everyone in the group headed to the washroom before we left and there was a lady standing outside the door with a bowl full of money and toilet paper in her hand. You had to tip/ pay her and she would give you a small amount of toilet paper. This was also the same at the bar we were at. So if you go we recommend bring those travel tissues you if you can.
We went into Varadero on our own. We got a day pass for unlimited rides with the double decker bus. Not that it really mattered where we sat but we couldnt pass up a ride on the top. Feeling the wind in our hair and the sun on our skin. The ride was not very long to get in town and we were able to walk around to check out the beaches, the locals hang out at, all the shops and our main objective was to find sunglasses. You wouldnt think it would be hard but we went to so many places and found one store that had some. They cost over $30 but couldnt argue because my eyes were burning.
We saw some amazing dogs while walking in the heart of Havana. We could not just walk by and not get a photo but to do that they will have to pay the man. That was really okay because it was so worth it. Just look at them!
This was overall a good trip and we would totally do it again. Id love to go with another couple two.