Last week, Jacquie and I escaped the confines of Canada’s frigid winter and traveled to the sunny beaches of Varadero, Cuba. This was our second time vacationing in Varadero, a city known for its incredible white sand beaches. I thought, wouldn’t it be great if I could take you from your snow covered home along for the trip with us? Well, armed with my new Ricoh Theta 360 degree panoramic photos I am going to take you on our adventure. So feel free to click around and get a feel for what this vacation was like for us…oh, and ignore my thumb and head in some of these shots. Let’s go!
A View of the Iberostar Laguna Azul Resort – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
Waterfall pool at Laguna Azul – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
This photo was taken from the back side of the resort on our first day. As you can see, it isn’t a far walk to the beach. The Iberostar Laguna Azul features 814 guestrooms, 6 pools (4 adult and 2 children), nightclub, theater, 5 restaurants, and several bars. I won’t explicitly review this resort here, that’s what TripAdvisor is for. What I will say is that this resort exceeded my expectations. The food, for what we expected from Cuban cusine was very good. The people were kind, and this resort is one of the most functional and catering places we have stayed! The pools never seemed to be overfilled either. If you are going to this resort, we found that if you were looking for a more quiet and subdued relaxing environment, it is best to go to the two pools which are on the left and right side of the grounds. These were almost empty, and Jacquie enjoyed reading here while I worked out in the gym. For me, I wanted to be near the party! We laid out near the main pool regularly and enjoyed the music and people watching. A thing we love most about Cuba is the variety of people that you meet from all over the world. We find that Cuba is great for a culutral melting pot that we haven’t seen as much in other Carribean locals.
Laguna Azul Lobby – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
Cigar lounge, Laguna Azul – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
The lobby was incredibly spacious and was rarely overcrowded (minus the last day which was had unfavorable weather). In the evenings we enjoyed the live saxophone or pianist who would play from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. Jacquie really did not care for the smokey atmosphere. Prepare to be smoked out of many places in Cuba if you are irritated by smoke. There is a cigar bar on the resort, but still, most people smoke in the lobby.
Tropical Show at Laguna Azul – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
We only went to one of the resort shows that night. I enjoyed it because it became more and more scandalous as the show went on. It was a version of what I imagine is performed at the Tropicana in Havana. The dance and singing was beautiful, and the costumes became smaller and smaller. It was a lot of fun.
Stay tuned for the next parts of our trip where we bring you along on our Catamaran and Sugar Cane Tour!