Trinidad is a beautiful colonial town and should not be missed during your tour in Cuba. You can read all the ins & outs about this town and the best sights here. This town has a lot to offer, but is actually not very large in terms of surface area. After we had explored Trinidad ourselves, we had a lot of time to spare and went looking for a new activity or attraction close to the town. Most people went to the beach near Trinidad, but we were looking for something more active (we live in Curacao so we try to avoid the beach on vacation). The Vegas Grande Waterfall was recommended in the travel agency close to our casa, you will find this waterfall in the Topes de Collantes natural park. After seeing some pictures, we were immediately sold! The next morning our tour started (you can book it on the spot or book this excursion in the Netherlands through Riksja Travel).
On the road with a local guide in Topes de Collantes
We were taken by taxi, together with another woman who had booked the tour, to the start of the walking route higher in the jungle in the nature reserve Topes de Collantes. There we met our local guide. Our Spanish is not very good, but luckily his English is. He could tell a lot (and fun) about the jungle. He did this with visible passion, which made the trip even more fun. Our guide lives near the jungle and knows the route to the waterfall like the back of his hand. He even made his own path away from the regular and tourist route. We like that, so it started well! The four of us walked on narrow paths past coffee plants on the way to the waterfall, while spotting several colorful birds in the meantime.
Breathtaking views and a refreshing dip in Vegas Grande
After an hour we arrived at the path that led to the waterfall below. On the way we met a small group who went back up again, after which it was clear that a considerable climb was waiting for us on the way back. Extra fun: on our walk down we came across a local farmer with a dog who was looking for a group of pigs that had escaped. We met these pigs further along the path, (still) enjoying their freedom.
Once arrived at the bottom, the beautiful waterfall was immediately visible and audible. After walking in the jungle for a while, we wanted nothing more than to take a dip and enjoy the view. That is exactly what we have done! While enjoying a mango that our guide found. This was the largest and tastiest mango we have eaten, but our view may have helped!
The way back up was a bit harder than expected. The path up (read: stairs) was tough and even more difficult due to the heat, but it was more than worth everything! As long as you are not physically wrong and you have a bit of fitness, this tour is certainly doable. Make sure you wear good walking shoes and have enough water with you. When we arrived at the top again, we said goodbye to our guide and had lunch at a nearby restaurant. A typical Cuban meal, which tasted very good: rice, chicken, vegetables and beans. We also stopped at a beautiful viewpoint with breathtaking views over the jungle. So a nice photo moment!
Do you want to do this tour to Topes de Collantes when you are in Trinidad?
This trip is definitely recommended if you are staying in Trinidad for a few days. We did the tour in the morning and in the afternoon walked through the beautiful characteristic town. Wander through the jungle in the morning and in the afternoon in a colonial town. What else do you want?! You can book the tour on the spot, but you can also book a Trinidad building block through Riksja Travel and then add the Topes de Collantes excursion.