Our 2nd day in Cuba

Vinales Travel Blog

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There were some suprises at night ... the pigs! We woke up because of their noises and the smell! It felt like we were sleeping in a pig farm! They were so loud! We realized that behind our window, there were pigs and looking out of that window, there was obviously a yard for them, but we could not see them, cause our window was blocked with the boards. We tried to sleep for some more, but it was not easy and we finally gave up.

After shower we packed our things, because we thought that the girl from our casa, will come to pick us up. We ate the breakfast and saw only the parents, the girl was not at home. We left our bags packed into the room and went to see the village.

Vinales is really cute little village. We walked around, took some pictures of the wonderful view to the valley and looked around in the plaza. We took our first mojitos (a 2 CUC) of the day and sat on tha plaza to drink it. Canadian tourists took a picture of us drinking mojitos on the plazaJ.

We bought some souvenirs as well. Then we saw the sign of the hop on-hop off bus and decided to view the valley with it. We had 1 hour before the next bus, so we went to our casa. On our way we saw the woman of the casa waiting for the bus (to get our passports!).

We went to the bus stop and sat there waiting for our bus stop and Katrin started to take the photos of the cars and people passing time. We stayed there for a long timeJ. Then a taxi driver came and asked if we need a taxi, we didn´t want a taxi tour in the valley, so we said no. He of course spoke only spanish, but i understood that he said that the bus is not coming, but i didn´t believe him. Finally, after we had enough photos of the cars and people, we decided to go to the tourist office to ask about the possibilities of seeing the valley.

Firstly we booked a collective taxi for the next day to go to Trinidad.

The system of the collective taxi is really good and from now on we did not travel by bus. You just go to the tourism office, tell them where and when you want to go and they will put your name down. The only negative thing is that there has to be enough people (min 4), otherwise the taxi will not make the trip. The prize was about the same as the bus ticket and there was no direct bus from Vinales to Trinidad (we should have taken a bus to Havana and from there to Trinidad). As we were the first ones to put our name for a taxi to Trinidad, we had to go back in the evening to the office to get to know if there was enough persons.

In Havanatur the guy offered us a 3 hour walking tour in the valley, we paid each 8 CUC and he said we have to wait a little for our guide. We went to buy some water to take with us and when we came back the guy from the Havanatur introduced to us 2 guides. They started immediately to flirt with us, but they were nice. Then the guy who had sold us the tour, started to flirt as wellJ.

Of course everything tooka bit time and the guys had enough time to flirt with us. They told us that we cannot leave Vinales already tomorrow, cause there is more to see in Vinales and on Thursday the carneval will start. And that also we should go out in the evening with them. Finally it was decided that Alexis was going to be our guide and the tour started.

Vinales is a small place, so our guide knew everybody and they all said hallo to us, which was nice. Also, he was really popular guy because he was walking with 2 beautiful blondesJ. He asked us if the guys in Estonia do the „psst-psst“ as well to the girls. We had not even noticed that they do that in Cuba!!! From now on of course we heard it all the time! The answer to his question was of course no, that the guys in Estonia do not do that.

(I was thinking to myself, that if they try, firstly everybody would think they are crazy and secondly, the girls would kick their ass for that, cause it is disturbingJ).

Firstly, we went to the tobacco farm. It was very nice and interesting. Alexis told us about the growing of the tobacco, that everything is done by hand, showed us the drying of the leaves and then a woman rolled us a sigar. We bought 12 sigars for 10 CUC from her. They must sell the tobacco to the state and state fixes the prize, but a very small amount over the quota the farmer can keep and from these leaves they make sigars to sell to the tourists. I told Alexis that my father was also a farmer in Estonia (of course not tobacco farmerJ), he said that his father was as well and that he grew up in that valley, but now lives in the village of Vinales.

The valley was very very pretty, it is not possible to describe it. The photos speak for themselves. The mogotes are special mountains, I read before the trip that only China they have similar mountains. In every corner there was a possibility to buy drinks and fruit. We saw an old guy working with oxes, Alexis told us that this was one of his uncles. There we met some Canadian tourists as well and they were discussing among themselves, that they dont have money to give to the old guy with oxes for taking photos of him!!! And then people tell that Cuban people ask for the money all the time and that Cuba is expensive! The guy did not ask for money and of course the trip is expensive when you think you have to give money to everybody!

The weather was really nice and sunny. We went through the cave (it was totally dark, but for a very short time. I had to hold Alexis hand to get throughJ, Katrin was holding mine) and saw some Swedish people climbing the mogote.

We climbed down the mogote from stairs thoughJ. Then it started to rain, we stayed for the cover in a little house and bought some little bananas (a 25 cents). There was a little cat, who became my friend, after I gave it Estonian cheeseJ. There were also little pigs and chickens etc. We met French tourists who were on a walking tour as well. Alexis told them that we are his first Estonian friends and that we are going to Trinidad on Saturday (and not tomorrowJ).
The rain was getting less and I guess the 3 hours was getting up, so we left our cover and head back to Vinales.

Alexis showed us a place where to go in the evening, but didn`t talk about going there with us anymoreJ. We were a little bit disappointed because we would have loved to go with him and his friend, cause going just the 2 of us meant too much attention from the guys. We forgot to offer him tip, but we hope he was not upset with that. We are really not used to offering tip! And we did improve on our trip!J

We went to the tourism office to ask about the taxi.

We were told that there are 2 more tourists, but one of them has not confirmed his participation, so she took our address and gave us her phone number, so we would call and ask if the taxi goes or not.

We went back to our pink casa and the lady of the casa gave us our passports! It was obvious that the girl from „our“ casa had showed no interest in us and that it was assumed that we will stay in this casa. The English speaking girl was still not home, so there was nobody to ask about it. But we did manage to make the lady of the casa understand that we need her to call about the taxi (my little spanish and hands and legs languageJ), the boy of the house also helped a little. Also they arranged for us a casa in Trinidad! That was really great, because we had no booking in Trinidad.

We did not order dinner, but ate our sausages and cheese we had brought with us to Cuba.

Then we went out, but we did not like the place Alexsis recommended and instead we drank in the place we had bought mojitos at the day. Of course we drank mojitos again. Then we went back home (there is no point to mention that wherever we went we had lots of attention).

This night we slept a little bit better. I don´t know if the pigs were quieter or we were starting to get used to itJ.

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just walking to our casa
just walking to our casa
the street of our casa (pink)
the street of our casa (pink)
we were waiting for the hop on - h…
we were waiting for the hop on - …
how we wished we had our bicycles …
how we wished we had our bicycles…
still waiting for that bus
still waiting for that bus
finally we were fed up of waiting …
finally we were fed up of waiting…
and we started our walking tour in…
and we started our walking tour i…
tobacco farm
tobacco farm
making a cigar
making a cigar
they call it tree of mother-in-law…
they call it tree of mother-in-la…
thats the cave we passed
thats the cave we passed
Swedish 8at least some of them) cl…
Swedish 8at least some of them) c…
we took the stairs:)
we took the stairs:)
mogote
mogote
it started to rain!
it started to rain!
this cat has just eaten some Eston…
this cat has just eaten some Esto…
the living room of the pink casa!
the living room of the pink casa!
Vinales
photo by: lizzy1987