Santiago de Cuba to Baracoa
This morning we left our guesthouse at 8:30am to head to Baracoa. Our first stop was at a lookout over Guantanamo Bay. The Bay itself is large, and part of it is leased to the US Government under a perpetual lease written into the Cuban Constitution when the US granted Cuba independence in 1902. The US Naval base is mostly hidden from view although some installations are barely visible in one of the photos below.
We then drove through some winding mountain roads, where we stopped for a group photo (although Barbara & Graham are missing). There was some light rain during this part of the drive.
We arrived at Baracoa just before 1:00pm, and checked into our guesthouses. The rain has cleared and blue sky is back. Baracoa was Cuba's first town, established in 1511, but became isolated when government was moved to Santiago. For many years Baracoa was only accessible by sea, although a road was constructed in the mid 20th century. This part of Cuba was devastated by a hurricane in Dec 2016, and damage to the area is still visible. Baracoa is extremely colourful, and was probably my favourite part of Cuba.
The above building was my guesthouse (the section on the left with the rocking chair on the verandah). We then went on a brief orientation walk to the main plaza's before having the rest of the afternoon free to explore the town.
At 6:00pm we met at a rooftop bar with good views over Baracoa, before heading off for dinner. This rooftop bar became our regular meeting place of an evening.