Traveling by Cuba’s Highways

Photo Feature by Caridad

HAVANA TIMES, August 14 – It’s been the theme of many movies, perhaps because so many people find it exciting to travel down long highways in their cars heading from one state to another, from one province to another, or from one country to another.

As I live on an island, what I’ve visited is each one of its provinces. Sometimes I’ve traveled in Chinese Yutong buses, sometimes in some not-so-uncomfortable car; or sometimes in a Russian Moskovich – into which water gets in when it rains, or smoke from the exhaust, or only the smell of gasoline.

Just the same, there’s always something worthwhile to look at on the other side of the window, though the landscape along the national freeway (still incomplete) can become monotonous, enough to put you asleep for a couple of hours if the trip is from Havana to Santiago or Granma.

In any case, there are also the clouds, that don’t believe in the poverty of a savanna almost devoid of trees, or in the narrowness of a highway that cries for widening.

And there’s no shortage of those people who always travel in the worst conditions, those who don’t even desire to leave their province or those who find no reason to leave.

They have prohibited traveling long distances at night because of the high risk of accidents. Still, it’s common to see all types of animals at day or night that mimic travelers, all types of birds that mock our slowness.

In each province one can find a sunset different from the other, and each province has its peculiar way of welcoming its visitors.

Click on the tumbnails below to view all the photos in this gallery

One thought on “Traveling by Cuba’s Highways

  • !ROAD TRIP! !ROAD TRIP! Thanks for these wonderful fotos, Caridad! They make me want to take another journey across my favorite island. During previous trips (1959, 1969-70, 2004, 2006 and 2008) I’ve been to every province save Guantanamo and Pinar del Rio, travelling by bus, train, camion and rental car. Those who intend to visit Cuba, or who have previously just stayed in Habana or Varadero, or an All Inclusive, my advice: see the rest of Cuba (or, as a HT Diarist put it, “Cuba B”). Leave enough time–at least three weeks if you can get it off, to travel through the the rest of Cuba in an unhurried pace. You can see the most by renting a car. Since the signage is almost nil, often you will loose your way, but this is half the fun. In Cuba it (be prudent, use your intuition) it is safe to pick up hitch-hikers (in fact, this may be the ONLY WAY to find your way–and besides, they often have interesting stories to tell). During my 2006 trip, I fell in love with Bayamo, Santo Domingo and the Sierra Maestras, and hope to return. During my last trip I revisited Playa Giron, Trinidad, Topes de Collantes and Santa Clara. Hope to revisit the sourth shore of Oriente–now Santiago de Cuba Province–which I last visited, by truck, along with my fellow brigadistas, in early 1970. Also looking forward to visiting Guantanamo and Pinar del Rio Provinces.

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