Traveling to Cuba is like stepping into an alternate universe!
In a lot of ways, Cuba is the exact opposite of the US. There are very few stores and most of the shelves in grocery stores are empty. There seems to be food for everyone, but not many options. There are, however, plenty of restaurants for visitors/tourists. Some neighborhoods look rough, but we felt safe everywhere we went. We opted to stay in a Casa Particular (private home) instead of a hotel for two reasons. First, we didn’t find any hotels with good reviews and many houses on Airbnb had great reviews. Second, we thought staying in an authentic Cuban house would give us a better feel for the culture and people. That was exactly what happened. Both families we stayed with were wonderful. They were like hotel concierge customized just for us! They helped us with everything we needed, from restaurant recommendations, to transportation, etc., and made us delicious breakfasts. They also answered our endless questions about Cuban life in general. Cuban people are very friendly and relaxed. It seemed like no one is ever in a hurry or stressed out. Most people we talked to were open, willing to share their experiences, and also thankful for the friendlier relationship with the US.
On our last day we wished instead of going home, we were moving on to the next city for another week of exploring. There is so much more of Cuba we want to see! It truly is a beautiful country, full of friendly, resourceful and creative people.
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