Playa Larga: Inside the Natural Beauty of Cuba

The Basics

We arrived to Playa Larga using the Viazul route from Havana. This route continues on east towards Trinidad. There is not an actual bus stop at Playa Larga; the bus dropped us off on the main road. When we caught the bus out of here, we stood at the same spot and hoped for a bus to drive by. It did, and it was actually early! Without any way to communicate with Viazul, we were glad we came early to wait for it.

Although we were greeted with several bicitaxis offering to take us into ‘town’, we opted to walk the few blocks towards our casa particular. As we had noticed on the map before arriving, Playa Larga contains one small street of business, with a string of casas mixed in. For us, it was the perfect spot to get away from the crowds of tourists and experience the peace of nature.

Get Your Adventure On

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La Cueva de los Peces

Snorkeling in Cueva de los Peces: A short drive from Playa Larga, halfway to Playa Giron, is a beautiful spot for snorkeling. We took a taxi for $25 CUC round trip; it was included for the driver to wait for us. After picking up our rented snorkel gear ($5 ea), we were first led away from the beach and down a wooded path. Not far along, we discovered the hidden, water-filled cavern. Narrow but deep, I was a bit scared to jump in at first. Inside, we explored the curves and corners that fish swam around. Back at the beach, we found an abundance of tropical fish surrounding the nearby reefs. We spent a couple hours enjoying both the cave and the bay.

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Tour in Zapata Peninsula: We chose the Laguna de las Salinas tour to venture away from the beach and into Cuba’s Zapata National Park. The tour itself was $15 per person, plus transportation ($30 per car). We found another traveler to join our car so we shared the transportation cost. On this tour, we were led by a guide through the park. He pointed out several birds, including wild flamingo! I enjoyed learning about the plants and animals of this diverse part of the country.

Eats and Drinks

You will find only a sprinkle of restaurants and bars in this one-road town. We enjoyed the shops priced in MN for most occasions. On the end of the strip of road, we found a casa that served generous portions for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. He also served us up some legit piña coladas with the simple ingredients of pineapple juice and rum poured into a freshly chopped coconut. Even though the prices were CUC, we found it totally worth the amount of food.

What Next?

If we stayed longer in Playa Larga, we would have ventured further into the Zapata Peninsula. For us, two nights was the perfect amount of time to recover from the city buzz of Havana and prepare us for our trip across the country.

Do you have more time in Cuba? Check out the latest posts:

Two Days in Cienfuegos, Cuba

Travel in Trinidad, Cuba

Havana, Cuba: First Time Traveler

 

 

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