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Bowser

Varadero Golf Club - Cuba

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Going to Cuba as a Canadian is simple and I understand many of you on this site cannot go there without considerable effort (if at all).

That being said I'm not sure you are missing all that much (from a golf course conditioning perspective) except for the extremely affordable golf at the only 18 hole course on the island.

The course itself has a very interesting layout with some holes playing up against the ocean making wind a major factor to deal with on any day. The greens were large and receptive but not in the greatest condition; inconsistent speed ranging from I would guess 7 to 10 and bumpy in spots which resulted in many 3 putts!! Plus I saw them cut once and never saw them rolled in my 8 days there (and I played 36 a day) and I was there a lot. Fairways and rough were acceptable (comparable to Florida this time of year). Tee boxes needed some "time off" or at least a break from usage to recover. 

I found the length off the tee be a little short from the whites and a little long from the blues but given the extreme wind conditions at times the white tees at almost 5800 yds was manageable where 6300 yds from the blues was just not in my game. Reds were at 5100 yds and gold at close to 6700 yds. They could use something in the 6000 range as a resort golf course.

Their website list green fees at $100 (Cuban CUC which is almost at par with USD) but if on a golf package, as I was, you only need to pay $33 CUC for the cart (mandatory) for the whole day. Of course a tip goes a long way to ensuring your afternoon tee time (that is maybe a $1 CUC tip... money goes a long way in Cuba).

The resort at the golf course is listed as a 4 star but it is more like a 3 star resort; food was acceptable; all inclusive package meant plenty of drinks available and of course bottled water as the local water might have you spending more time sitting than standing. Lobby, bars, restaurants and pool was all in great condition but rooms were a little dated and in need of some TLC and/or updating.

If you can get there it is an experience worth having and I recommend an all inclusive package to cover your food, drinks, room, and unlimited golf. I just wouldn't put it on a bucket list item solely for golf.

For me it was $1700 CAD for 7 night, 8 days and I played 14 rounds of golf ($33 CUC a day for cart, about $45 CAD). Of course the beer and rum flowed freely 24hrs a day... and the locals are very friendly and willing to help were possible.

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No pictures?  I would have never considered a trip to Cuba with the former or current political climate.  I consider Cuba like Hotel California.  "You can checkout anytime you like, but you can never leave."  Besides, having spent most of my formative years, growing up in Miami, I've experienced all the "Cubano" I'll ever need in a lifetime.

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Guess this won't make it to Golf Digest's Top 100. 

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On 1/27/2020 at 8:30 AM, Mr. 82 said:

No pictures?  I would have never considered a trip to Cuba with the former or current political climate.  I consider Cuba like Hotel California.  "You can checkout anytime you like, but you can never leave."  Besides, having spent most of my formative years, growing up in Miami, I've experienced all the "Cubano" I'll ever need in a lifetime.

No Pictures! Actually left my phone back at home and it was really nice to just unplug from the world for 8 days. I didn't miss it at all (except getting my hockey scores was difficult).

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