Colonial charm, the cuban way
Trinidad is a wonderful cobbled colonial town built on the foothills of the Escambray Mountains a few miles inland from the Caribbean Sea on the south coast of Cuba. The town was founded in 1515 by Diego Valazquez, one of the original Spanish settlers to arrive with Columbus. Trinidad grew fast due to the rapid growth of the sugar plantations in this area. During this period of growth there was an influx of French plantation owners. Trinidad’s winding cobbled streets contain old churches, museums and a good choice of restaurants and bars. There is a busy street market selling handmade souvenirs and some antiques. Often as you walk through the narrow back streets people will invite you into their houses for a local coffee or fresh fruit juice, and tour of their house. Some of these old houses are packed with antiques, most with an interesting story attached to them.
The nightlife in Trinidad is good and offers a choice of reasonable restaurants (by Cuban standards), bars and music clubs, some playing excellent live music with well known Cuban bands. There is a night-club set in an enormous cave above the town near the Hotel Las Cuevas, which is very popular with both tourists and Cubans alike. Many Cubans will hitchhike for hours to reach it in the later part of each week. About five miles from Trinidad are Playa Costa Sur and Playa Ancon, both white sandy beaches with hotels of the same names. As this is the Caribbean coast of Cuba the sea is warm and clear, with coral reefs close to the shore.