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Outdoor Activities in Cuba – Adventure Guide

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Outdoor Activities in Cuba - UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Trinidad

Prior to 1959, Cuba used to be one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Hundreds of thousands of people would visit Cuba each year to enjoy its world class beaches, sample its excellent cuisine, and meet its friendly locals. The 1959 revolution changed things.

Fidel Castro and his communist regime effectively killed off Cuba’s tourist trade, and people stopped visiting the island.

Again things changed in the 1990’s. The Cuban government changed their policies and started accepting tourists from all over the world, including the US. Since then, the numbers of tourists visiting Cuba have risen steadily each year.

Today, Cuba is an interesting place filled with things to see and do. This adventure guide highlights the top 5 outdoor activities in Cuba that you can try on your next holiday.

Outdoor Activities in Cuba – Adventure Guide

Mountain Treks in Viñales

Cuba has some of the most stunning and unspoilt mountain scenery in the Caribbean, particularly in its national parks.

Outdoor Activities in Cuba - Hiking in Vinales

Outdoor Activities in Cuba – Hiking in Vinales – Photo by Romtomtom

Of Cuba’s many national parks, Viñales, a national park in the Pinar del Rio province, is arguably the best park to visit as it has a number of tourist facilities set up to make it easier to get around the park.

Viñales is full of interesting things to see and do. Its mountains are perfect for trekking and its countryside is full of caves and tobacco plantations growing some of the finest tobacco in the world. Viñales’ locals are friendly and inviting, too, and they’re more than happy to tell their story to interested visitors.

A local guide is essential for seeing and experiencing all Viñales has to offer. As well as guiding you around the valley and its mountains, they’ll be able to take you to hidden hotspots that most visitors to the area will miss. Guides can be found near the main bus stations in Viñales.

Surfing

Outdoor Activities in Cuba - Surfing

Outdoor Activities in Cuba – Surfing – Photo by Ahisgett

Cuba’s eastern Guantanamo province is the best place to catch some waves, especially during the months between September and December. While Guantanamo’s waves won’t be big enough to satisfy expert surfers, novice and intermediate surfers will feel at home.

A number of surf schools and surf camps can be found in the Guantanamo province, complete with instructors that can teach the basics of the sport. Boards can also be rented from these schools and camps for a modest sum of money.

Scuba diving in Jardines de la Reina

With warm, clear waters, unspoilt underwater scenery, and a rich and varied marine life, Cuba is one of the best diving spots in the Caribbean.

Of Cuba’s many diving hotspots, Jardines de la Reina, a small archipelago and marine reserve located south of Cuba, has some of the best diving Cuba has to offer.

Jardines de la Reina is full of perfectly preserved coral reefs, vertical walls, underwater caverns, and more. The archipelago’s waters are also remarkably clear with perfect visibility up to 25m. Jardines de la Reina is also home to hundreds of different species of marine life, including dozens of species of fish, rays, eels, giant turtles, and more.

The waters surrounding Jardines de la Reina are also home to seven different species of sharks, including whale sharks and hammerhead sharks, making Jardines de la Reina one of the best places in the world to try shark diving.

Outdoor Activities in Cuba - Diving

Outdoor Activities in Cuba – Diving – Photo by U.S. Navy

Take a bike tour through Cuba

Cuba is one of the most beautiful countries on Earth.

Its colourful bird life is spectacular and varied, its mountains and national parks are stunningly beautiful, and its many towns and villages have rich and storied histories.

One of the best ways to explore Cuba’s natural beauty is to take a bike tour through the country. You’ll be able to see the best of what Cuba has to offer while travelling at your own pace.

Bikes can be rented from Havana, the capital of Cuba, at a relatively low cost. Local bike tour guides can be hired in Havana, too.

Explore Cuba’s many UNESCO world heritage sites

Cuba’s nine UNESCO heritage sites are some of the best places to visit in Cuba. Each is full of interesting sights to see and exciting things to do.

For lovers of architecture and history, the UNESCO Heritage Site of Old Havana is a must-see in Cuba. The old city is home to a number of architectural landmarks, including cathedrals, churches, and theatres built in the classical Baroque and Neoclassical styles. Every all inclusive holidays to Cuba should include a visit to this beautiful place.

Outdoor Activities in Cuba - UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Trinidad

Outdoor Activities in Cuba – UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Trinidad – Photo by Justin Otto

Other recommended UNESCO Heritage sites in Cuba include the city of Trinidad, a historic city filled with cane sugar mills and tobacco plantations, San Pedro de la Roca Castle, a large and well preserved fort built to protect the port of Santiago de Cuba, and the Historic Centre of Camagüey, a small village built by the original Spanish settlers to Cuba.

Cuba is a beautiful country filled with lots of things to see and do. Make sure to try the best outdoor activities in Cuba when you are on your next travel adventure. You won’t be disappointed.

This is a featured article by Joey Ferrer, world traveller and lover of all things adventurous in Cuba.

Have you travelled to Cuba before? What are your favourite outdoor activities in Cuba?

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Nicole

    July 15, 2013 at 2:21 AM

    Looks great! Hopefully the travel restrictions for those in the US are lifted at some point soon. Thanks for sharing.

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5 Ways To Improve Your Sight

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Our eyesight is perhaps one of our most useful and most essential senses (this, of course, may be moot). For many, the idea of losing their vision can be a scary thing. Loss of vision begins for many in their late 40s when it starts to become prominent. However, there are many ways in which you can improve your sight and keep from losing it in the extended scheme of things.

So here in this list, we have taken the liberty to compile a list of 5 ways in which you can improve your sight.

5 Ways To Improve Your Sight

# 1 – Prescription Glasses

In today’s internet driven world it is now easier than ever to get whatever you want online. You can buy glasses online or prescription sunglasses very easy and have it delivered to your home. No fuss and no hassle.

# 2 – Eat Carrots

Carrots are especially beneficial for our eye health, and it would prove invaluable for you to eat or drink as much carrot juice as you can. It may initially have a bitter taste but the more you drink it you will get used to it.

# 3-  Bilberry Supplements

Bilberry is a supplement that is not that common with those who aren’t into the health niche, but bilberry is an excellent supplement for those who are looking to improve their eyesight.

# 4 – Watch Things From Far Away

This may seem like a strange method, but when you look at items off at a distance, you are strengthening your eyes. Your eyes are muscles, and they need exercise just as much as your body does.

So when you are looking at items or object off at a distance you are doing your eyes a significant workout that they desperately need.

# 5 Finger Eye Push Ups

To continue on with our last entry – a great way to get your eyes to see better and to improve them is by doing finger eye push-ups. Now, this doesn’t mean placing your finger in your eye but your eye’s vision.

By placing your finger in front of your eye and then away and back again you will strengthen the eye. This is because the eye is working to see an object in two different ranges.

Strength Your Eyes

Improving your eyes without surgery and an operation is possible. And if you consider these methods, you will “see” where we are coming from.

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Video Slot Games Are All The Rage

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Online casino games have seen a meteoric rise in popularity over the years. Let’s be honest -gambling is the average man’s pastime event. Very easy, simple and if you’re lucky you can win out big on a few small dollars or coins.

For this reason slot games have become some of the most highly played and enduring online casino games for newbies as well as veterans.

So it is no wonder that video slot games like Bullion Bars slot online are some of the most popular online casino games. Not only do they provide a great deal of entrainment but the payouts are quite high for those who manage to get the jackpot prize money.

However what remains a hallmark feature of online casino games and slot games comes in the form of how easy they are to win.

That’s right!

Playing online casino games are much easier to win then had you visited a real-life casino. This is not to undermine real-life casinos – as they do offer their fun and entertainment.

But online casino games are geared to the player. The online casino must payout players, all players, for a majority of the time, and when we say a majority of the time we mean almost all of the time.

Many online slot casino games and other casino games require that the online casino have a payout rate as low as 95%.

As low as 95%!!!!

So the chances of winning are highly in favor of the players. Failure to pay out players and having the casino simply take in more income then should be taking in will have the online casino shut down.

For those interested in playing online video slot games then now is the best time to play in this very lucrative and highly entertaining entertainment medium.

Online slot games come in a variety of themes and can offer any player, old or new, an experience that will keep them coming back time and time again.

The experience that online slot games offer players are top-notch, and the notion that many layers can play these games anywhere, at home on their desktop or the bus on their mobile home is what makes these games so alluring.

With very little to pay to play these games and a massive amount that can be paid out on a small amount as well as for being entertained the online casino slot gems don’t look like they will slow down anytime soon.

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Three Reasons Pregnant Women Should Test Their Tap Water

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Drinking plenty of fresh, clean water is an important part of a healthy lifestyle.  It’s even more important to make sure your water is free of contaminants when you are pregnant.  Drinking enough water during pregnancy maintains amniotic fluid levels and helps carry nutrients to the baby.  However, if you are drinking contaminated water, the more you drink, the more the fetus is exposed to the harmful effects of those contaminants.

Water quality has been headline news lately after it was discovered that the public drinking water contained lead in Flint, Michigan.  If you’re pregnant or know someone who is, you may be wondering if it is safe to drink tap water while pregnant.  Here are three contaminants you should test for if you’re pregnant and drinking tap water.

  1. Lead

Lead poisoning is a serious concern during pregnancy.  Lead can be found in old water taps and outdated plumbing.  As water travels through and sits in these pipes, it can absorb lead.  If a pregnant woman drinks this water, her body then absorbs the lead which can be passed to the fetus.

While lead may not cause serious harm to a pregnant woman, the fetus can suffer lasting damage from even low levels of lead exposure. As the fetus grows, lead causes blood cells to become deformed, preventing them from functioning properly. Lead also damages the peripheral and central nervous systems causing learning disabilities as the child develops. Children affected by lead also tend to be shorter than other children and may have trouble with their hearing.

  1. Bacteria

Water naturally contains bacteria, but in excess amounts it can be harmful, especially to pregnant women.  E. coli is a type of bacteria that is occasionally found in the water.  This is the same bacteria that is known to cause food poisoning, and it has the same effects when it is in your water. It can cause stomach cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever, all of which can put a developing fetus at risk.  Bacterial contamination can also be an indication of other contaminants such as protozoa and viruses which are linked to dysentery and hepatitis.

  1. Pesticides, Heavy Metals, and Chemicals

Lead poisoning and bacterial contamination are the most dangerous water contaminants for a pregnant woman and her baby, but there are other pollutants that are also concerning.  Both municipal water and well water can test positive for pesticides, heavy metals, and other chemicals.  While in low amounts, they may not be especially harmful to the pregnant mother, any exposure can pose a risk to the developing fetus.

Make Sure Your Tap Water is Safe

If you’re pregnant, the best way to make sure your drinking water is safe, is to test it.  Whether you are drinking tap water, city water, well water, bottled water, or even filtered water, all are at risk for common contaminants that can harm a fetus.  You can send water samples to a lab for complete analysis, but this can be costly, and it often takes weeks to get results. A faster and easier solution is a home testing kit.  Most kits will give you results in a matter of minutes.   If you’re pregnant, don’t take chances with the water you’re drinking, test your water today.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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