Santa Lucia, Cuba
Now that it is a bit cooler outside, I hope you are ready to plan your next winter vacation! While thinking of where you want to go this winter, I will share with you one of the beautiful places that I vacationed in Santa Lucia, Cuba. Cuba is a very affordable vacation for those of you in Canada, and now in the United States as well! You can travel to an all-inclusive resort (accommodation, meals, and drinks) for two people, for under $1000.
Snorkeling, Of Course!
My favorite activity in Cuba was snorkeling. Snorkeling, unlike scuba diving, does not require any fancy permits or courses to complete before attempting. It can be considered a budget activity as you can usually rent snorkeling equipment for fairly cheap at the resort and even use it at the beach! All you need are a couple of items:
- Face mask and snorkel
- Life jacket (always a good idea, but optional)
- Underwater camera (again optional, but you really want to capture some amazing underwater shots!)
For my snorkeling experience I opted to take a day tour, off-resort excursion, out onto the ocean. A catamaran took a group of us out about two hours from shore to a coral reef. Saint Lucia, Cuba has the second largest sized coral reefs in the world, bested only by Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
I loved snorkeling. This isn’t surprising as I am a natural fish in the water. I grew up around pools, took many swimming lessons, and later on in life became a lifeguard for awhile. I am a very strong swimmer. On the trip I spent two hours out in the water, flipping around and taking pictures with my underwater camera.
Bring An Underwater Camera To Capture The Moment
Keep in mind that I took this trip back in 2011, before the era of the action camera and amazing underwater pictures. Nevertheless, here are a couple snaps from my underwater swimming!
Just a word of caution for anyone trying out snorkeling for the first time, especially around coral reefs, they are very beautiful but extremely sharp and can cut through skin like a knife. You have to be very careful to navigate around them as they are irregular in size and hard to judge how close they are. It is also a very good idea to travel in a group, so help is always close at hand. You aren’t the only creature swimming around out there! Be on the lookout for sharks, eels, fish, sea turtles and starfish!
Where To Next?!
On my next Caribbean vacation I will be purchasing and bringing my own snorkeling gear. I rate this activity two big thumbs up. I wonder where my next vacation will be…somewhere warm perhaps?
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