After waking up at the crack of dawn and having breakfast between 6 am and 7 am, we departed Havana and eventually make our way to Ocean Casa Del Mar by H10, an all inclusive resort in Cayo Santa Maria (aka the Cuban Keys). While on the road we stopped in Zapata Nacional Park where we were introduced to the flora and fauna that makes up the ecosystem of Cuba with a naturalist; ate lunch at CASA Enrique, a hostel and restaurant near the Bay of Pigs; and toured Cienfuegos, which included a visit to the major town square, a visit to one of the oldest theaters in Cuba, and a performance by the chorale group, Canticus Novus. While traveling to the Cayo, we also were lucky enough to witness how the Cubans dry their rice using the paved road and as we approached our hotel, we saw large groupings of flamingos in the Cayo waters (a lot of these flamingos were killed by Hurricane Irma). These were two WOW inducing moments for me. After this long day, we checked into our resort hotel and enjoyed a buffet dinner with the group at the resort.
(NOTE: These photos are pre-Hurricane Irma)