Postcards From Cuba by Alpha Whiskey Photography
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Postcards From Cuba

  • Jun 08, 2017
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Postcards From Cuba

A fascinating and beautiful country full of contrasts and colour, Cuba offered me such a welcome respite that I took far fewer images on this trip than I usually do, preferring instead to enjoy the company of friends while killing infinite brain cells with pungent cigars and delicious cocktails. But beauty is beauty and when I could manage a steady hand I attempted to capture a few postcards.We actually started away from the capital, Havana, travelling west through the stunning valley of Vinales and indulging in a brief boat ride through the Indian Caves. We met a gentleman at a small tobacco farm who was kind enough to give me a freshly rolled cigar. Surrounded by endless 'buena vistas' one of the best ways to imbibe the spectacular scenery was a few hours on horseback. Parched and thirsty, we stopped at a coffee farm to sample some alcohol, honey and guava juice; exactly what you need to keep you steady at the reins. A dinner at an eco-fam overlooking the valley at sunset rounded off a beautiful day.I happily forgot about the word for a few hours while frolicking at the lush sandy white beaches at Maria La Gorda, on Cuba's south-west tip. Not one to languish on the sand I absorbed all my rays while floating in the gloriously clear water. The surrounding nature reserve, however, proved too enticing to resist, offering a wealth of species from bee hummingbirds and iguanas to small lizards and herons, and even bats in a cave. It was almost worth serving oneself up as a buffet of blood for the indigenous mosquito population. Repellant is a must.Via a brief stay at the Las Terrazas nature commune we headed back to Havana. A vibrant city resplendent with impressive architecture, anyone with an aversion to colour should definitely stay away. Much of the kaleidoscopic hues were courtesy of the city's famous abundance of classic American cars, their irresistible lines and forms easily forgiving the modern Korean diesel engines under the hoods. They're worthy of their own post and it will be on this blog soon.Havana, baked in heat and humming with ubiquitous air conditioners, is a city with a fascinating history, readily gleaned from a walk through its old town. Statues of conquerors and monuments to pioneers line the busy alleys and squares, walled by magnificent buildings, churches and cathedrals. The seemingly squalid exteriors belie the ornately furnished interiors, often revealed at the summit of a precarious marble staircase. The city's Unesco status inhibits any major development or renovation but also prevents the sacrifice of its distinctive aesthetic to a pervasion of coffee shop and fast food chains.Feasting on a traditional Cuban dish called Ropa Viejo (old clothes), essentially tasty pulled beef, was a fitting prelude to the Buena Vista Social Club where a succession of talented (if rather elderly) singers and dancers regaled us into the night.A great time was had by all in a country that is justifiably attractive to visit and it is little wonder that Hemingway found so much inspiration to write here. The people in Havana, and indeed all over Cuba, are friendly and welcoming, albeit a little too enterprising with their eagerness for your attention. But I found them exceptionally obliging and I will personally be eternally grateful for their kind help. All these images were shot with Olympus, composed and processed in my usual postcard style. While the sweltering heat sweated out my creative juices we were waved off on our departure by thunder and lightning. It made me think of a line from the song Escape by Rupert Holmes. 'If you like pina coladas and getting caught in the rain' then Cuba is the place to be.

Jun 08, 2017
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Postcards From Cuba

This post has 24 photos Jun 08, 2017Comments (1)1247 views
A fascinating and beautiful country full of contrasts and colour, Cuba offered me such a welcome respite that I took far fewer images on this trip than I usually do, preferring instead to enjoy the company of friends while killing infinite brain cells with pungent cigars and delicious cocktails. But beauty is beauty and when I could manage a steady hand I attempted to capture a few postcards.

We actually started away from the capital, Havana, travelling west through the stunning valley of Vinales and indulging in a brief boat ride through the Indian Caves. We met a gentleman at a small tobacco farm who was kind enough to give me a freshly rolled cigar. Surrounded by endless 'buena vistas' one of the best ways to imbibe the spectacular scenery was a few hours on horseback. Parched and thirsty, we stopped at a coffee farm to sample some alcohol, honey and guava juice; exactly what you need to keep you steady at the reins. A dinner at an eco-fam overlooking the valley at sunset rounded off a beautiful day.

I happily forgot about the word for a few hours while frolicking at the lush sandy white beaches at Maria La Gorda, on Cuba's south-west tip. Not one to languish on the sand I absorbed all my rays while floating in the gloriously clear water. The surrounding nature reserve, however, proved too enticing to resist, offering a wealth of species from bee hummingbirds and iguanas to small lizards and herons, and even bats in a cave. It was almost worth serving oneself up as a buffet of blood for the indigenous mosquito population. Repellant is a must.

Via a brief stay at the Las Terrazas nature commune we headed back to Havana. A vibrant city resplendent with impressive architecture, anyone with an aversion to colour should definitely stay away. Much of the kaleidoscopic hues were courtesy of the city's famous abundance of classic American cars, their irresistible lines and forms easily forgiving the modern Korean diesel engines under the hoods. They're worthy of their own post and it will be on this blog soon.

Havana, baked in heat and humming with ubiquitous air conditioners, is a city with a fascinating history, readily gleaned from a walk through its old town. Statues of conquerors and monuments to pioneers line the busy alleys and squares, walled by magnificent buildings, churches and cathedrals. The seemingly squalid exteriors belie the ornately furnished interiors, often revealed at the summit of a precarious marble staircase. The city's Unesco status inhibits any major development or renovation but also prevents the sacrifice of its distinctive aesthetic to a pervasion of coffee shop and fast food chains.

Feasting on a traditional Cuban dish called Ropa Viejo (old clothes), essentially tasty pulled beef, was a fitting prelude to the Buena Vista Social Club where a succession of talented (if rather elderly) singers and dancers regaled us into the night.

A great time was had by all in a country that is justifiably attractive to visit and it is little wonder that Hemingway found so much inspiration to write here. The people in Havana, and indeed all over Cuba, are friendly and welcoming, albeit a little too enterprising with their eagerness for your attention. But I found them exceptionally obliging and I will personally be eternally grateful for their kind help. 

All these images were shot with Olympus, composed and processed in my usual postcard style. While the sweltering heat sweated out my creative juices we were waved off on our departure by thunder and lightning. It made me think of a line from the song Escape by Rupert Holmes. 'If you like pina coladas and getting caught in the rain' then Cuba is the place to be.



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In the warren of barrios and alleys.
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In the warren of barrios and alleys.

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El Floridita Bar, frequented by Ernest Hemingway.
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El Floridita Bar, frequented by Ernest Hemingway.

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The Museum Of The Revolution, formerly the Presidential Palace.
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The Museum Of The Revolution, formerly the Presidential Palace.

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Morro Castle Fortress.
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Morro Castle Fortress.

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Classic car in Revolution Square.
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Classic car in Revolution Square.

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Buena Vista Social Club.
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Buena Vista Social Club.

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Beach at Maria La Gorda.
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Beach at Maria La Gorda.

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Valley in Vinales.
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Valley in Vinales.

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Sunset in Vinales.
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Sunset in Vinales.

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My trusty steed.
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My trusty steed.

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He gave me that cigar :)
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He gave me that cigar :)

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Mural De La Prehistoria.
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Mural De La Prehistoria.

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Indian Caves.
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Indian Caves.

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Jamaican woodpecker.
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Jamaican woodpecker.

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Bee hummingbird.
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Bee hummingbird.

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Ropa Veijo.
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Ropa Veijo.

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Comments

Sabrina RaymondJun 6, 2017 06:02 AM

It looks like you had a marvelous trip. I love the postcard processing, especially the colorful building shots. Did you book a tour or just wander around?

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