Cuba is a beautiful island whose people reflect a blend of Carib Indian, African and Spanish heritage. It’s the largest of the Caribbean islands 1,260 km long. The topography ranges from stunning beaches to rugged mountain ranges. Valleys, lakes, wetlands and rivers give variety to the land.
Cuba has many attractions among them massive forts, beautiful beaches, colonial architecture, friendly people, a vivacious culture, great freshwater and deep-sea fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling, exquisite tropical scenery, sailing, romantic and sensual music, the world’s finest cigars, sizzling cabarets and classic automobiles.
Bicycling tours through Cuba are increasingly popular and if you are a serious biker and plan an extended tour, you should take along your own bike and spare parts. The beautiful Pinar del Rio province is especially recommended for biking.
Christmas is once again a holiday in Cuba. Although the Catholic Church was never vanquished by Castro, Christmas Day had not been a legal holiday in Cuba since 1969. In December 1997, in honor of Pope John Paul II’s impending visit, Castro reinstated Christmas as a public holiday. Many Cubans vacate their front rooms to built massive nativity scenes, often open to the public.
Cuban Spanish is generally spoken much more rapidly than Spanish in Mexico or Central America, and it contains many idioms. “Que bola?” (How’s it going?), “le da chango!” (that’s amazing!) and “esta infumable!” (that’s terrible!) are but a few of the common expressions.