Windsurfing & Stand-Up Paddleboarding in Michigan
OK Boys and Girls here is our Cuba report.
Flights out of Windsor,Can$ 800.00 all inclusive,(except anticipate leaving around $30 or $40 in tips plus Cuban Peso
$25.00 departure tax from the airporto!!
So we leave last Sunday afternoon, yeah Iknow Super bowl Sunday, but we got constant updates on the game + the plane was
3/4 empty + the price likely reduced even further the week before we left.
Anyway we arrive at around 6:30pm, ehhh they don't stamp your passport they stamp a slip of paper and give it to you
instead, hmm wonder why that might be??
We are bussed from Santa Clara to our Motel ,, Melia Las Dunas **** 1/2 and arrive by about 8:30pm and start wondering
around in the drk looking for our room. in this massive resort. The locals speak some English but not great so the
litteral translation for the resort from Spanish I believe is Me a lost Dumb Ass!!
Next morning we go to orientation and begin to feel much more comfortable with our surroundings. The breakfast, lunch,
and dinner buffets were in our opinion superb, with any thing you want specially cooked at several stations throughout
the buffet area. There are also several resteraunts serving Seafood, Chineese, Mexican, and a Steakhouse. One word about
the beef there though, as one of the older gentlemen said to me," I think they feed their cows chopped up rubber tires"
and I can vouch for that, best to stay away from the beef. There are many beach bars and places to have finger foods,
again the hambergers are some type of sausage meat that starts out very red and only dims in hue a bit as they cook it
so when you take your first bite it can be a little unerving to see what appears to be red meat, although they were very
tasty. In general the food is kinda bland and one must bring your own hot sauces with you, (we had been warned),
although everything was quite tasty. also you may want to bring an 8 oz insulated cup toget the included drinks
otherwise you get a small plastic cup which will require many trips to quench your thirst. We pretty much left a small
tip everywhere but most of the time a $2.00 for a super meal felt embarrasing although they said, one pesso for the
locals was a lot of money??
There are no beggars on the resort nor any pressure to buy time share, the beach is totally relaxing with an ivory
colored sand that is fine like ash and azure blue waters crystal clear!]
We met Aerial the head windsurfing instructer at the resort that day and as we had been warned the equipment was pretty
archaic, Bic one designs with sliding mast track and daggerboards. Sails were old Bic cloth 4.5 and 5.5.s with no head
twist. Aerial doesn't own a harness and has only tried one once! Although the day after we arrived it was blowing 5.5 in
the morniing by the time we got oriented and got down to the beach the wind had ebbed to 6.5 were it remained most of
the week except the for our departure day of course when it blew up 5.5 conditions again. Nest time I would bring a 6.5
or 7 with me and leave it with Aerial. The winter winds there (Dec through the end of April) seem to be quite steady and
with the proper equipment the place would really be a lot of fun.
There are Hobbie Cats and Sunfish available for use so you can still get out on the water and enjoy some planing
conditions, Unfortunately they have not invested in SUP's as of yet. With the waves being a bit larger than those on
Lake St. Clair this place would be a riot for some small wave rideing SUP action! As well as just paddleing on the
We also booked several dive and snorkeling trips as the reef there is live and fabulous to see, rich inlive coral and
sea animals. But be aware as PADI is American it is not recognized there. we did some freshen up diving in the motel
pool with Eddie the dive master that took us out to the reefs where we saw Lion fish,Sting Ray, and a huge Barricuda
(easy 5 footer) which prompted me to use a bit more air than I usually would. They were easy dives in up to a max of 40
feet. Snorkeling the reef brought many an interesting view, starfish, conch and best of all we got lucky when two
dolphins wandered over to get in on the fish we were feeding the underwater creatures. They are very timid curious
animals that in the wild like this really try to avoid letting you touch them, although I did manage on several
occasions to cop a feel!!
All in all a wonderfull vacation, but a slightly different tone, diving rather than windsurfing. I had thought of
bringing my kite but was somewhat concerned with the charge of getting the board there and back. In retrospect this
place could definately be a meca for Windsurfing, kiteboarding and SUP if we could let go of our differences and enjoy
our hobbies without the unfortunate influx of politics!