It can be so nice to spend a portion of your vacation in the lap of luxury, with friendly staff members ready to indulge your every whim. The island of Cayo Largo del Sur, with its long white sandy beaches is certainly a destination that offers pure luxury, since the island is entirely comprised of resorts and sandy white beaches. You won’t find any locals here, but it’s still a place where you can receive some much deserved pampering.
How to get to Cayo Largo Del Sur
Located just to the south of the Cuban mainland, most visitors arrive by plane. There’s also a small international airport offering flights to Canada, Argentina, Italy and also from Havana. You can also if you choose take a boat from the mainland. While there are numerous large resorts on the island, nobody actually lives there permanently. Once you wander away from the resorts, you can enjoy a feeling of beautiful serenity and miles of unspoiled beaches. There’s a small village where the resort workers stay, but other than that, the island is very quiet indeed.
A Tale of Two Beaches
Cayo Largo Beach is really made up of two beaches, Playa Sirena and Playa Paraiso, both located on the west side of the island. These two beaches are roughly one kilometre apart, and you can easily walk from one to the other. You will find the beach to be less crowded the further you venture from these two beaches, but be aware… naked sunbathing is quite common away from the main beaches. You might see more than you were counting on! Be mindful of this if you’re travelling with small children.
Turtle Hatchery on Playa Sirena
Playa Sirena is perhaps the least developed Cayo Largo Beach. From April to September access to the beach is often restricted as this is when the sea turtles crawl up onto the beach to bury their eggs and let them incumbate until ready to hatch . This is an unforgettable time to visit, since you might be lucky enough to see the tiny turtles burrow their way out from the sand and awkwardly sprint their way to the ocean in a massive 1 in 1000 survival rate!
Sail Around the Archipelago
Cayo Largo del Sur is just one of 350 islands in the Canarreos Archipelago. The vast majority of these islands are uninhabited, and you can even live out your desert island fantasy. Some resorts can drop you off with a lavish picnic, and will pick you up a few hours later. It’s not quite a desert island experience, since you know you’ll be picked up by a yacht later in the day, but it’s still a lot of fun! Boat cruising in the Canarreos Archipelago also allows many chances to see dolphin playing in the water. It’s a lovely way to spend an afternoon before being ferried back to Cayo Largo Beach.
When the Tide Is Low…
The protected side of the island is more noticeably tidal than its cousin. You can take a walk in the water as the tide goes down, and get a close look at tropical fish as they frantically head for deeper waters. Be sure to ask at your hotel with regards to the times for high and low tide. You really don’t want to be too far out when the tide is coming back in, although it’s a slow process on Cayo Largo Beach.
Scuba Dive or Snorkel
The waters off the island are so crystal clear that even those who have never been snorkelling in their lives might want to put on a pair of flippers. Since the island is located in a an archipelago, the waters are always relatively calm. The island has a number of coral reefs to explore, but be sure to look and not touch. Your hotel will be able to help you out with snorkelling equipment, and most resorts offer snorkelling expeditions, which can be a wise choice… safety in numbers!
Cayo Largo Del Sur is also a fantastic place to dive with colourful coral reefs, tropical fish and a lot of submerged shipwrecks to see.
To Wrap it Up
Cayo Largo del Sur is an unbeatable choice when it comes to an island getaway. The rest of Cuba is just a short hop away and it can be very very soothing to spend a few days on an island paradise. If you crave big blue skies, endless white sandy beaches and fresh ocean pretty much all to yourself, then Cayo Largo del Sur is where you need to be.