l: viñales valley
s: spring | may
In May 2018, I stumbled across a place that I didn’t yet know existed. Physically, I was somewhere in Cuba. Subjectively, internally, I could have been anywhere. After hearing the words tobacco fields and mogotes and learning that I could explore both by horseback, I promptly headed west of Havana to seek a solo adventure. Adventure, I certainly found.
The story to follow is one I’m going to leave for a one-day-down-the-track film script, or at the very least to share with my great niece and nephews, when they no longer think that their great aunt is cool.
For now, I’ll share that the valley of Viñales provided for me the kind of adventure I’ll never forget. The type that can only arrive, in perfect timing, the way things do when you just let go, let things flow and everything unfolds exactly the way and when it should. The type that radiates pure freedom. Freedom, as it turns out, is my panacea. And Viñales turned out to be the perfect place to tap into it.
For those seeking adventure to the far corners, this place is for you. Still without phone service or internet and still with horse and cart to get around; with mojitos made on honey, mangos picked straight from the tree and guava juice at the ready; with jurassic like mountainous landscape and a valley of farms growing and drying tobacco; with rainstorms and thick air and fire flies at dusk; with the absence or at least slowing of time; with Buena Vista Social Club as the perfect soundtrack, cigar smoke as the perfect elixir, and the mingling of beautiful, beautiful people; Viñales Valley is a place that transports you - to who knows where, perhaps to life once upon a time or maybe not even to a tangible time or place at all - but to a significant place, that if you let it, will no doubt set you free and make a solid mark on that internal map of yours.