Sightseeing Flicketti

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Latest sightseeing Flicketti

Bullfighting on horseback requires some of the best horsemanship. Rejoneador bullfighters can be be considered some of the most skillful riders in the world. The horses are trained to perfection. Filmed in Madrid, Spain

Tokyo fish market, probably the largest in the world. Surprisingly, no smell that usually accompanies fish markets. A must visit if you happen to be in Tokyo.

Life size reproduction of canals and Venice streets inside the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas. The canals are just a large pool and the sky is a lit and colored ceiling. The gondolas are real.                           

High flying amusement rides on top of the Stratosphere hotel in Las Vegas

Cuba

Havana, Cuba, city frozen in time. Cuba is communism in Spanish, different language but the same atmosphere is as back in USSR, except much warmer and American cars surviving from the 50's.

It is amazing how cars from the 50's are preserved and kept running in Cuba.

Cuba, a forbidden fruit for US travelers while a place for inexpensive vacation on some of the best beaches for visitors from other countries.

Where in the world:

Well, it is actually almost a swimming distance from Miami. Varadero is the heart of Cuban tourism and historically the first beach resort on the island. It was established as a vacation spot before the revolution and some older hotels are the original ones. Most Large cities (except US) have direct flights to Varadero, frequently "vacation airlines". 

What happened in the 50's?

Several factors made things change: criminalized and corrupt nature of the previous government; romantic communisms-utopism ideas of the new generation; support of the strengthening communistic-socialistic Russia... In any case, the government could not hold and the people did not want it to hold. Unfortunately the replacement did not lead to prosperity either. However, against all odds the country did manage in isolation, in spite of its small size, remoteness from the allies, and proximity to a large enemy. How? For the large part because of the TOURISM!

Hotels:

You have to give it a notch down in terms of the hotel star ratings. However, it also depends if a resort is owned by an international company or the local government. Newer resorts by definition would have everything new, while older ones will be a hit and miss. Overall, if you aim at higher end and more expensive options you will likely get more than you expect, except food. Food and Internet connection are not that easy to get to an embargoed island. Subject to change, of course. Well, stay healthy, eat less, enjoy the beach and the beautiful sea! We had a blast for a half of price we would've paid at more expensive destinations. Just aim at the high end hotels or the high end (Royal Service) subsections of the hotels. 

Diving:

Not much coral and not much fish, mostly sand with few spots of coral formation. The underwater scenery is somewhat similar to Bahamas and Cancun/Playa-del-Carmen, not Cozumel though. There are few small wrecks around Varadero. We found that the main underwater attraction was a huge Russian warship of the Cold War era. It was sunken because it was getting old and it was burning more diesel than the country could afford. Pretty cool underwater. It has cannons, huge machine guns, some swim-through. I would STRONGLY recommend bringing your own equipment. Local dive shop had old and poorly maintained stuff. Also subject to changes in the future, but be warned. Overall, not a specific dive destination, but you can take a day-two for diving while staying at a resort. We've heard reports that the southern part of the island is more interesting underwater. Have not been there yet...

Other things to do:

Visiting Havana is probably a must. Feels like a broken time machine. Spanish-colonial older architecture, Russian-communistic newer buildings and small cars, American carsof the 50's, all cultures twisted in a weird combination. Hemingway liked the country the way it was, unique. It is very, very different from all other Caribbean islands and may not stay like that much longer.