Today is my first day back from Spring Break. Oof! This means that I have report cards due soon and student-led conferences coming up. It means that student portfolios need to get in order and that all of the student data is primed and ready to share with parents. Busy times folks! I prefer to think a bit longer about my lovely Caribbean beach vacation in the Cata area of Venezuela instead.
My fellow teacher friends might have a tougher first day back because they went to further flung locations (like I normally do). I have two friends that went to Bonaire for a week of scuba diving fun. Two friends went to Los Roques to experience some of the best beaches in the world. Another friend went to Cartagena and Bogota, Colombia like I did last year for Spring Break. Many others went to Merida… which I still haven’t written about the two weeks I’ve spent there… I will get to that soon, I hope.
Whereas, I and three other friends took a mini road trip to a semi-close beachy area called Bahia de Cata. Actually, I went to four beaches while I was there, two of them new-to-me.
Since I’ve previously written about my love for Catica and the big waves in Cata, I will just write a bit about Cuyagua and El Playon.
El Playon is the pedestrian nothing-to-write-home-about beach in the town of Ocumare. We went to pizza in Ocumare and some of my friends have stayed there. If you are looking for a last minute place to stay in this area you should look in Ocumare because it seemed like there was a posada everywhere I looked. If you are staying there, don’t have a car of your own, and just want access to a beach, then El Playon is a perfectly fine place to go. Just do your best to see some other beaches in the area too!
Playa Cuyagua is my favorite beach on mainland Venezuela! Sure, you need to drive 45 minutes up a windy mountain road past Cata, but once you get there it is breathtaking. We went during spring break and there were very few people on the beach. This is saying something because every other beach we went to in the area was crawling with people.
If you like to camp it looks like the perfect spot to do it (though campfires are prohibited). If you like using a hammock at the beach, people found plenty of places to put them. If you like to surf, grab your board and run there because people were surfing non-stop. The breeze was always perfect and the sand was powdery soft.
The only problem I have with Cuyagua is that the waves are so huge and close to the beach that it is not a good spot for beginners. Nor is it a great spot for those looking for a relaxing place to swim in the ocean- not unless you find straining to keep your head above the water relaxing. The waves were fun, though. They also made me feel like I was getting a nice workout every time I entered the water.
If you want a relaxing beach near Cata, hop on a five-minute launcha (small boat) out to Catica. If you want pristine, adventurous, surfable, non-crowded Caribbean paradise then check out Cuyagua.