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Kite U.S. Forums _ Travel _ Cuba - Request for info

Posted by: Neil Font Jan 4 2007, 12:23 PM

To all:

I am going to Cuba, in May 07 biggrin.gif , and I was looking for some input. My skill level is less than an intermediate boarder, I can get up and ride for a while but I need more kite time.

1) Knowing that it is difficult to get things in Cuba, what would you suggest I take so that I could trade or sell while I'm there?

2) Are there any good schools, or hot spots where Kiteboarders hang out?

3) Does anyone have a good contact of someone in Cuba that I could touch base with on the Internet or while I'm there?

4) Are there any areas where I should stay away from?

Any information at all would be greatly appreciated as I want to make the most of my time there.


Posted by: mIKAEL Jan 4 2007, 05:41 PM

I'm going there in March. I could tell you more about it when I come back.
From my research, the main spots that people are kiting are Varadero and Cayo Guillermo. I'm going to Cayo Guillermo. A little bit more in the middle of nowhere (not much night life), but hopefully better conditions. Don't think there's any rental or shop there. Maybe a school in Varadero, but I'm not sure.
Both spots are beginner friendly.

Posted by: tingrin Jan 4 2007, 07:27 PM

I have been to varadero about 4 times and Holquin cuba once but not kiteboarding. I would say Varadero is good choice if you want a bit more to do. But this is cuba so don't expect trip to Havana good idea on non windy day. The Beach at Varadero is very long (about 7miles total) so I would say you could stay at any one of the resorts and be a short walk along the beach to a kite friendly launch spot. However stay away from the extreme ends of the beach(bad hotels and launch areas..jelly fish etc).

My parents stayed at Cayo Coco and didn't like it because it was too windy....therefore I say go for this location biggrin.gif
Also one of the guys at Silent sports in Toronto take his son to Cayo Coco every year for kiteboarding. He stays at Cayo Coco MElia hotel and says it was very good.(life gaurds at hotel very helpfull in launching and landing your kite if you give them a couple of buck during your stay) Shallow for a great distance out with white sandy bottom and miles of beach and great wind. Only complaint he said was the sind tends to be more on shore rather than side shore. He said he had no trouble bringing his equipment on Air Transat.....however they do have new wieght restrictions.

I have heard of a kite school in Cay Guillermo which is just a bit further up the peninsula from Cayo Coco. I would bring some old kiteboarding mags for the locals. They really don't have much access to the internet though.

I too am researching vacation spots for Feb and late march so keep us up to date on any info you may have on good resorts or locations in cuba.

I found a web site that details some of the kiting beaches in the Caribean including Cuba which I found really informative. It is

One last note is that in my experience Varadero and Cayo coco etc can some times be chilly during Jan Feb so bring a shorty (light jacket and sweater for the evenings). They get these cold winds when the jet stream dips really low they call them the El Norte....good wind though

Bon Voyage

Posted by: Neil Font May 20 2007, 08:57 AM

Sandals Royal (Varadero) (couples only resort) resort was absolutely incredible, food was awesome, pools were fabulous, service and people were second to none. This resort is touted as being the best in Cuba, according to locals, and after my 7 day stay, I believe it.

Wind was always side on shore for the entire week. It is also worthy to note that the wind was very clean down there, no twitching at all, park the kite at Zenith and it just sits there. Thats so nice while trying to get your board on and getting setup.
The sand at the beach at Sandals is fine, but the beach is about 1.5 to 2 miles long with rocks, small cliffs, and coral for shore line at both ends. Perfect sand in between.

As far as Kiting, I'm am just learning and the 1st 2 days were light wind, really too light (about 8 - knts). Got my kite up, did some water starts, and splashed around for a while.
The beach is nice but not very wide, there is one area which is wide enough for setup and launching, but be aware there is alot of traffic, gawkers stop right where they shouldn't be all the time, :? making it difficult to safely launch and land on the beach. Ergo water launches work much better for this reason. It would be much better if there were 2 kiters to help with the traffic and stuff (as always).

The next few days winds picked up to 15 knts, side on shore, perfect wind, but there is a small sand bar near the beach which made for 5-6 ft breakers right where you need to start. This was too much for me, and after a few attempts, and respecting others safety, I decided to pack it in.

There was 1 other kiter down there from Germany who rode a Cabrinah 16M bow kite. He was much more experienced, and was able to get out in the big chop, looked like he was having alot of fun. Although I didn't see him getting any air, he was riding for quite sometime.

Overall it was a fabulous vacation, with not enough kiteboarding. I have heard that Cayo Coco is a much more kite freindly area. This is located down the coast S/E from Varadero, and is reported as having waste deep water for a long distance from shore. Maybe I'll get there next year with a few guys for a kiteboarding vacation instead of a couples get away with someone who doesn't kiteboard. I'm sure all of you know what I mean by that.

Thanks to Mikael Lanoe for all the info. It was really helpful. Loved your pics from Cuba.

Happy Safe Kiting to all

C U all at Kitefest 07 at MB

Neil Font

BTW There is a kite school in Varadero, maybe worth checking it out if you are going.

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