I just got back from Holguin Cuba (June 24-July 1 2005). I had a wonderful time at the Sol Rio de Luna Y Mares resort. My friend and I stayed at the Luna side. The beach (Playa Esmaralda) is amazing. The water is green and blue and clear; the sand is white and smooth under your feet. To clear everyone's mind about the currency, they no longer accept US dollars for spending. It must be exchanged for Convertible Pesos which is equivalent to a US dollar. Exchange only what you need because you will be charged for exchanging it back to your currency. For all Canadians, you cannot exchange your loonies and toonies so leave those at home. Also, try not to tip people in your currency because it is a hassle for the locals to change anything other than convertible pesos. Our resort was very clean, and the staff is very friendly. It's a great place for all ages. They have a variety of activities: morning excursions, beach volleyball, archery, darts, spanish lessons, snorkelling, waterpolo, spanish dance classes. I would recommend sailing on the catamaran (someone experienced will take you out) and swimming with the dolphins for 20 minutes. Sailing is free with a booking. Swimming with the dolphins is $89 Convertible Pesos and we were told that it will go up to $110 next year. They just built a new facility for the dolphins that opened up the July 1, 2005 weekend. If you want a professional photo, bring $5 peso for the kiss picture, another $5 for the lift from the dolphins picture, and it costs $10 to do the lift from the dolphins. Do not wear any sunscreen before swimming with the Dolphins. They did not tell us that, but we weren't wearing any. There is a shower you can use before getting in the water. It was worth every penny. They have nightly entertainment at the their theatre. Don't buy the cigars from the locals on the beach because they are most likely fake and you might get asked for a receipt from Canadian Customs. We bought a phone card that you can get from the resort's post office. To call Canada it costs almost 2 pesos for 1 minute...very expensive. The service is not fast but life over there is not as fast paced as we live so you just have to have patience; don't forget what a beautiful place you are staying at, which is the main reason I went. Enjoy!
Sol Rio de Luna Y Mares
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