Without a headwind we had a pleasant 83 km ride over rolling hills to Remedios yesterday. The heat (30 to 32 degrees every day) is always an issue, but as long as we are off the road by early afternoon we aren’t too dehydrated when we arrive.
Remedios is a pretty colonial town near the north coast. It is lightly visited by tourists, though tour buses do come briefly from the northern cays. These cays, which include Cayo Santa Maria, Cayo Las Brujas, and Cayo Coco, are completely given over to upscale, all inclusive resorts. They are connected to the mainland by several long causeways. Access to Cayo Santa Maria, for instance, is via a 45 km causeway. According to our guidebook most of the visitors to the cays are Canadian, so “you’re more likely to be talking to Jim from Kitchener about hockey than the poetry of Lorca”.
Last night Jim and a couple of bus loads of his friends were in town to see a ragtag Mardi Gras parade. It circled the attractive central square before arriving at a posh hotel, where several dozen identical drinks with umbrellas were waiting for the thirsty Canadians. Sporadic explosions and music continued into the night.
We have relied upon Lonely Planet’s recommendations for our accommodation in Remedios and Sancti Spiritus. This has increased our accommodation costs a bit to 25 to 30 U.S. dollars / euros a night, but we are being treated to gracious, nineteenth century mansions. As always, we are generally the only guests.