Our good friends Jonas and Monette had their get-away wedding in Cuba recently and they invited us to come along. So what else to do than packing our bags and heading out of rainy Vancouver and towards sunshine!
The place we went to is called Melia Las Dunas and is located in Cayo Santa María, an island of Cuba's north central coast. What's interesting is that the island is connected to the mainland through a 48 km long causeway, which took over 10 years to build.
Our flight to Cuba left on Nov 9th early in the morning. Instead of getting some good sleep like sensible people would do we watched US election all night instead and only got 3 hours of sleep. Tired and with some very stange feelings about the election results we made our way to the airport. For the first time we used carsharing, which was suprisingly convenient and cheap. Once there we met all our friends and boarded to flight.
Our first interesting experience after arriving was getting through customs. There were two lines: ours, where the officer didn't even check what we declared to bring in to the country and the other line next to us where two of our group were in unfortunatly. Before our trip we found out that bringing Walkie Takies into Cuba is now allowed (they were banned for a long time), so each of us brought one to make communicating in the resort a little easier. But apparently it's still suspicious to some officials, so their luggage got searched upside down after seeing the declaration form and they had to declare to leave with the Walkie Talke on their departure.
Once outside we got to our bus and were driven directly to the resort just in time before the buffet closed. Finally arived!
The next days consisted of lounging at the beach/pool, getting drinks too early in the morning and eating way too much. At night time they often had some show performace or music playing in the lobby area. Here are some picture to give an impression.
After a few days of relaxing the wedding was held. The ceremony was in a small gazebo close to the beach. Everything was in the Carribean spirit: light and fun. Afterwards we headed to the beach for a fotoshooting for more memorable pictures.
After the weeding was over we had to get ready for our trip to Havanna. I actually had to go there to get a permit from the Canadian Embassy to fly back to Canada. Reason was, that I just got Permanent Resident, but my Card to idendtify myself wasn't printed yet. Apparently the only way to board a flight as a PR is either by having the card or (if lost/stolen/ etc.) by going to the Embassy. But I will talk more about that adventure in a different post.
Anyway, I think this sums it up. Look forward to our post about Havanna and Trinidad!
Cheers, Alex & JJ