Photographer's Note

Let me post this one before I change my ideas...

I'll do like the children to justify myself... "It was ribeiroantonio who asked me if I had any old photos to show"... I'll pretend that I didn't start my portfolio with old photos and I didn't post that of the Taj Mahal 3 days ago. And another country on my map sounds good. 8-) :-D

Varadero is the most popular beach resort in Cuba. It is a sand strip 20 Kms long and only some hundreds meters wide on the North (Atlantic) coast of Cuba, a little more than 100 Km East of Havana and a not much more than that South of the almost Cuban Miami. According to the tourist legends, Al Capone was the first big tourist investor of the place and as far as I remember this photo was shot very close to his hotel, now called Aquazul.

It is one of the better beaches I know for anyone who likes to spend entire days taking sun and sea bathes, which was what we did most of the time. Some may think that it is too futile, but sometimes it really tastes good, specially if the nights were spent listening to live Cuban music, dancing, drinking a lot of rhum and mingling with the locals in Cabaret Varadero, which wasn't more than a small stadium turned into a concert hall mixed with an open air dancing saloon. Having been in Cuba again 4 years later and having talked with much persons that went there afterwards, I think that we were very lucky for having been able to meet and talk with so many locals whose interest in us went beyond getting some money one way or another, because Cuban people are rather kind, appreciate a good conversation and love to amuse themselves. Maybe it wasn't only luck, after all, we were the only ones in our hotel that frequented such place at night...

It appears that tourism has increased much since then. Indeed, four years later that was already evident. In 1993 we were 14 Portuguese on the airplane to Havana and we had to go through Venezuela. Four years later there were already two or three direct flights a week to Varadero and perhaps another one or two to Havana. Sadly, Cabaret Varadero was closed then. And the the popularity of Cuba as tourist destination was still far from its highest level...

Location (latitude, longitude): 23.13973,-81.27862

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Additional Photos by Jose Pires (stego) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4422 W: 612 N: 7301] (24132)
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