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One of the most famous beaches in the Holguin province, has many luxuriant coral reefs and offers good snorkelling, Guardalavaca has interesting cliffs and amazing countryside. For Divers; Guardalavaca has a dozen or so excellent dive sites including the nearby Boca de las Esponjas (Mouth of Sponges), El Salto (The Waterfall) also the Cañon de los Aguajíes ~ well known for it’s abundant and vibrant sponges; these are only a few of the best-
There are only two resorts in Guardalavaca, The four star Brisas Hotel and the three star Amigo and Atlantico. All other popular ‘Holguin Resorts’ are on Playa Esmeralda or Playa Pesquero. Guardalavaca is easily accessible from the Esmeralda and Pesquero resorts and can be a 10-
Guardalavaca offers a daily market with vendors selling their handmade wares. Vendors change daily so if you see something you like don’t dither – buy it there and then – you may never see it again !!!!! Just a short walk through the market you will come across a couple of small shops selling t-
From the front of the market you can take a left turn and walk past the Amigo & Atlantico resort up to the Centro Commercial Los Flamboyanes (on your right hand side of the street); a small parade of shops offering a small selection of everyday items, clothes, ‘snacky nibbles,’ alcohol, snack/pizza bar. There is also a humidity controlled cigar shop, prices are much the same as the resort shops but the selection is better, the staff are helpful here; if you don’t know much about cigars they will help you out. Just a little further up the street there are a couple of more modern glass-
Nightlife in Guardalavaca:-
El Ancla – (11am-
There are a couple of restaurants near the Pesquero and Esmeralda Resorts. One is called Conuco de Mongo Vina (playa Esmeralda?) and there is also the Restaurante Cayo Naranjo and the Yaguajay Restaurant which are both within the Parque Natural Bahia de Naranjo -
For a lovely day out: Holguin & Gibara – Ask your Hotel reception to organise a taxi with English speaking driver (he will be your guide for the trip) to take you to Holguin & Gibara. Ask your driver to stop at places of interest along the way for photo taking etc. Spend free time in Holguin visiting the cigar factory, museums etc., if that is what you want to do or just enjoy a leisurely stroll taking in the architecture or the hustle & bustle of the city, and then go sightseeing by cab – La Loma de Cruz etc and then on to Gibara (pronounced Hib-
The taxi for the whole trip should cost you around 100 CUC (£60)...... If you share with 2 others that is only £15 each ....much, much cheaper, far more interesting and informative and soooo much more rewarding and fun than any organised trip. Remember to set the price with the cab driver before you set off.
FYI – An organised trip to Holguin alone is 59CUC each (over £35 each)... so an independent trip by taxi is good value for your CUC's.
If you go down to the Guardalavaca market place and ask anybody for Evert, he will be able to put you in contact with a good English speaking driver and arrange all the details of your trip for you. Other taxi drivers to ask for are Oro Eddie or Frank – contact them as soon as you can to arrange a day for your trip as they are very popular.
LoonyLou is very knowledgeable about the Holguin area, and has made many contributions to the TripAdvisor web site.
This article has been reprinted with her kind permission.