Varadero Cuba is a beautiful resort town located on the thin Hicacos Peninsula that reaches out into the sparkling Caribbean waters from the Cuban island. Varadero was once a community of rich Cubans and foreign nationals who built mansions and stunning landscaped grounds for themselves only to have their property reappropriated after the Cuban revolution. The beach itself is the primary attraction at Varadero, but the surrounding area also boasts many natural treasures, ecological wonders that an intrepid adventure traveler will find to be nearly endless.
Punta Hicacos Natural Park
The Punta Hicacos Natural Park, located in Varadero, boasts several acres of pristine nature and some of the best beaches in all of Cuba as well as several other attractions. There is a delfinario--a pool with tame dolphins that perform before a live audience several times per day in the center of the park as well as a horseback rental agency. Mangón Lake is home to many species of tropical birds and reptiles and is easily explored by foot or bike.
Parque Josone is another beautiful nature reserve located within the town of Varadero that offers a variety of outdoor activities. Visitors can explore the man-made lakes by boat during the day and stay the night in one of the many campgrounds as vibrantly colored Macaw parrots squawk overhead. Parque Josone also has a swimming pool and a nice selection of dining options from four different restaurants.
Cuevas de Bellamar
The Cuevas de Bellamar are a series of natural caves that can be explored on guided tours from several agencies that operate out of central Varadero. The caves are a full of crystallized stalactites and stalagmites that have been named after various shapes, such as the "Fountain of Love." The tour takes 45 minutes and explores the first 1,000 feet of this amazing natural attraction.
About an hour by boat from Varadero lie some of the best scuba diving in the Caribbean. Both Cayo Piedras and Cayo Cruz del Padre are beautiful islands that are used as bases for dives by many of the area's dive agencies. There is a blue hole dive as well as a wreck dive that are both popular destinations for scuba aficionados visiting Varadero.
Article Written By Ocean Malandra
Based in San Francisco, Ocean Malandra is a travel writer, author and documentary filmmaker. He runs a major San Francisco travel website, is widely published in both online and print publications and has contributed to several travel guidebooks to South America.