Hey. Psst. Looking for a great vacation? Why not go scuba diving in Castrolandia. Wow. Fabulous. Did you know that there are hardly any humans on that island? Amazing, but true. Just read the article below, and you won’t remain a skeptic for long. This is paradise: you can work on your tan, explore ecosystems, encounter all sorts of wildlife, all in glorious isolation from other human and semi-human beings.
What a well-kept secret. But how long will this “unspoilt” paradise remain intact? Hurry up, then, and go before it gets wrecked….
Why Cayo Levisa is ideal for a diving holiday in Cuba
Sunday, 4 November 2012 10:04 AM
If you want to experience real luxury on a sunshine break, consider heading to Cuba for your next getaway. The islet of Cayo Levisa is a particularly idyllic spot for a secluded all inclusive Cuban getaway, where you can spend your time exploring the world beneath the waves.
You can reach the isle by taking a boat from the western province of Pinar del Rio and travelling for about 30 minutes. When you arrive, you’ll be greeted by a long stretch of white sand and lush greenery.
There isn’t much to do on land other than enjoy the sunshine, but the isle is a haven for scuba divers and snorkellers. Read on to find out more about what makes Cayo Levisa so special for an underwater break.
With over 20 dive sites dotting the islet, it’s not surprising Cayo Levisa is a popular spot for diving holidays. The coral systems to be found in the waters around the key are fascinating, and scuba diving enthusiasts flock here in their droves to get a close-up look at what lies in this underwater paradise.
If you go to the Diving Centre you can arrange an excursion, with around ten trips for you to choose from. The majority of reefs are found in the northern section of Cayo Levisa and among the top sites to explore are La Espada del Pirata (the Pirate’s Sword) and La Cadena Misteriosa (the Mysterious Chain). The former of is home to large numbers of brain coral. You can take a look at the coral between 12 and 18 m deep, and keep an eye out for the garden eels that also call the area home.
La Cadena Misteriosa, meanwhile, is made up of a wall of coral 3 m under the water. If you venture 12 m deep, you should catch site of shoals of parrot fish and big barracudas, while lobsters and rays are also common sights.
Another spot worth visiting is La Corona de San Carlos, which is renowned for its high volume of valuable and attractive pargo and cherna (red grouper) fish. If you’re lucky, you might also spot sharks and marine turtles here between 15 and 25 m deep.
Cayo Levisa is renowned for its rich nature and unspoilt scenery; there are few buildings to be found on the islet, aside from a hotel and some holiday bungalows. If you want to get away from it all, this is definitely the place for you.
In addition to the coral reefs, there are other ecosystems to be seen if you spend some time exploring the area. The pastizales, or grasslands, are marine meadows to be found in much of the southern section of the islet. Also known as seibales, the grasslands comprise a variety of plant species, with the most prolific being turtle grass, or thalassia testudinum, to give it its proper name.
Living in and around the pastizales are all manner of creatures, the most notable of which is the endangered Antillean manatee, so keep your eyes peeled.
The third type of ecosystem to be found here is the swamps, which cover 78 per cent of the area’s terrain. All sorts of marine invertebrates live here, providing vital sources of food for the islet’s fish population.
The beach on Cayo Levisa covers much of the northern section of the isle and is the ideal place to work on your tan. Throughout the year, temperatures can be anywhere between 21 and 33 degrees C, so bring some sun screen!
If you don’t fancy delving deep below the ocean’s surface, strap on a snorkel instead when you want to do something other than lie back on the sand. There are many types of coral to be seen in the waters around the key, as well as an abundance of fish and other marine life.
If this has you all fired up to work on your tan in a place that is only inhabited by invertebrates, fish, and all sorts of creatures (why put up with those pesky, disgusting third-world humans?), then book yourself a diving tour. Maybe you can start your search here, at the German travel site Sprachcaffe. But please note, that all travelers to this island paradise are required to have their own health insurance. One must assume that this is necessary because there are no humans on the island, save for a handful who run the tours and cater to the tourists’ needs.
Or perhaps you would prefer the tour package from World Wide Holidays.
But if you hanker for contact with semi-sentient beings and love to play the philanthropist when visiting islands inhabited by inferior noble savages — even if those with few inhabitants — then you might want to choose Soultime Travel, which boasts of providing “holidays that make a difference.” This travel outfit claims to deal directly with “independent” guides in Cuba — who depend on the tourists for their survival. In addition, as their web site claims, “This company supports several families with children with clothes, medicaments, books, second hand luxury items, purchase of their handicrafts, and donations for constructing materials and improving their housing.”
Wow. So, apparently there are some humanoids there, after all. But don’t be fooled by this appeal to your higher instincts. This company still promises you a heck of a holiday, as evidenced by the photo that graces their web site. It seems the local humanoids are even capable of slicing coconuts open and sticking straws in them. See below.