CTP – Blog 8 – Cayo Largo

Leaving Isla Juventud towards Cayo Largo

The first day we didn’t go very far from Nueva Gerona (literally just outside the Rio las Casas and around the corner). We anchored in front of el Presidio Modelo, went for a swim, then rinsed off, and went to sleep soon after in preparation for sailing to Cayo Largo.

Photo of Rio las Casas in Cuba by stevie vagabond
Leaving Rio las Casas
Photo of Stevie Vagabond with star fish in Cuba
Going for a swim that night and finding friends
photo of the sunset in isla de la juventud cuba
Sunset that night behind Isla Juventud

The next day we got as far as Cayo Tablones which is one of the many small islands that run along a reef extending east from Isla Juventud. There we had another calm night and a good rest.
After helping the Captain weigh anchor the next morning on May 21st I went back to my berth for a bit more rest. I got back up just as we were going out into the Caribbean Sea, through a cut in the reef, with nice big slow rollers for waves. You could really feel the power of the mighty ocean.

Arriving in Cayo Largo

We arrived in Cayo Largo that afternoon and I’d have to say I wasn’t too fond of this place in the beginning. The people there were great, we had wifi, and we could get food, but I did not feel like I was in Cuba anymore… aside from the heat.

Photo of Playa Serena in Cayo Largo, Cuba
The west side of Playa Serena from the boat.
Photo of birds in the mangroves in Cayo Largo, Cuba
Weaving through the mangroves to the marina.
Photo of the marina in Cayo Largo
Pulling up to the marina in Cayo Largo.

Cayo Largo is a resort island, where the only locals that live there are workers. The rest of the people on the island are tourists (lots of Canadians who can fly direct from Toronto or Montreal for dirt cheap), and the occasional cruiser. There was also a mega (and I mean MEGA) yacht there from Georgetown C.I. named ‘Lady L’, which blocked the entire view of the water from the marina restaurant/bar.

photo of the market in Cayo Largo, Cuba Photo of the train in Cayo Largo, Cuba Photo of a turtle in Cayo Largo, Cuba photo of Cayo Largo, Cuba photo of the basketball court in cayo largo, cuba photo of a horse in cayo largo, cuba photo and quote of jose marti in cayo largo cuba photo of cayo largo, cuba

It wasn’t all bad though as I was able to talk to my mom and Romi, share a couple blog posts, and eat a few pizzas made by Raquito the chef from Pinar. I wandered the island a little bit, but there really wasn’t much to see.

Photo of a pizza made by raquito at the marina bar in cayo largo, cuba

As for the boat the Captain was doing a few repairs and found that our 30 gallon water tank had leaked all our water since the new filter was not tightened down enough. This was extra brutal since there was no access to good fresh water here on the island. We would have to go up to Cienfuegos to fill the tank before setting sail for Providencia. Hence a few more days in Cuba (We also later heard that they did not have potable water there either). Thankfully I was able to make good friends with a few of the workers and therefor we were able to get a local discount on bottled water, as well as extra wifi cards through a hotel connection (they ran out of wifi cards).

Aside from my new Cuban friends I also met a few travelers, cruisers and crew who all made the stay in Cayo Largo much more pleasant.

photo of a girl on a beach in cayo largo, cuba
My new friend from Canada took me on an ATV cruise of the island.
photo of a cruiser in cayo largo cuba
Great pep talks with this super woman!
photo of palm trees and white sand beach in cayo largo cuba
Visiting Playa Serena
photo of star fish in playa serena, cayo largo, cuba
It was pretty easy spotting the star fish in these waters.
photo of playa serena in cayo largo, cuba
Spent many hours beach combing here and came out with full pockets.
photo of dolphins in cayo largo cuba
These two sweet dolphins were so talented.
photo of dolphins in cayo largo cuba showing off
However it was so sad to see them locked up here, with scars on their bodies.
photo of raquito in cayo largo cuba
This guy worked all day every day, and made me many pizzas.
Photo of a local cuban in cayo largo, cuba
My last day in Cayo Largo I was given a present.
photo of some local cuban food in cayo largo, cuba
Free food in a bucket!

On Friday, May 27th we cleared out from Cayo Largo with the Guarda Frontera and said goodbye to Cuba.

Next stop Providencia!