Viva La Musica: The Sassiest Cuban Dances!

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Music and dance are as much a part of Cuba as the island itself. The spirit of the people can be found in the rhythm of the music— in the gentle sway of hips and arms to upbeat, sensual music of guitars and drums. Cuba as an island was originally populated by indigenous tribes before the Spanish conquered the island in the late 15th century. For years, Cuba remained a colony of Spain, and with the introduction of the African slave trade, a new Cuba was born. Dance existed then within slave cultures, an expression of freedom not known elsewhere. Out of the rubble of a newly formed nation in 1898 came Cuban culture as we now know it: a spicy melting pot of indigenous, European, Latino, and African influences. Dancing is an important part of this newly formed culture, the freedom of movement a metaphor for the larger freedoms of the Cuban people. Like any artistic expression, dance in Cuba is constantly changing and evolving, much like the waves from the Caribbean or the energy of a Havana night. It would be impossible to experience Cuba without experiencing some sort of music and dance, but for those who feel the music and cannot resist the urge to move, there are ways to explore Cuba with dance as the primary focus.

See Dance

When in Cuba, go check out one of the many discos and cabarets in Havana. These dance halls are home to energetic performances, live music, and is a place Cuban culture comes to life. The Tropicana Club is Havana’s most famous cabaret, though it is also one of the more expensive dance experiences. Other discos are scattered throughout the cities, and the best way to learn about the best dance halls is from the locals themselves. Ballet is also a significant dance form in Cuba, and there are many ballet companies performing some of the most interesting and beautiful ballet in the world. Many various styles of amateur competitions and studios are scattered throughout Cuba, and some even have open viewings for rehearsals. Though the best way to experience Cuban dance life is to go out and experience it yourself!

Cabaret dancers wear elaborate costumes and perform nightly for packed audiences (Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons)

Go Dance

It is hard to watch dance and not want to dance, and luckily for you, learning how to dance the salsa, cha-cha, or mambo is an easy task to tackle! You can attend any number of workshops and classes on the traditional Cuban dances in Havana year round. Here, you will learn the exact motions, the counts, and get a feel for the complexities and intricacies of Cuban dance. Don’t be discouraged if you do not feel as graceful as some of the dancers you might see in the streets or at the discos— that is not what the dance is about! Whether you decide to attend a dance workshop or not, the best way to experience dance culture is to simply dance. You will not have to look too long or hard for a night spot to mingle with locals and tourists alike while feeling the beat of the “one, two, three,  cha-cha-cha.” Let the music take control and the island inspire you!


Locals invite tourists to dance in the historic streets of Trinidad, Cuba (Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons)

Experience Dance

To really get a feel for the culture and significance of Cuban dance, check out one of the many dance festivals in Cuba. Havana is home to the International Salsa Festival, a week long salsa dance from April 23-29, 2018. Here, there are dance lessons, dance parties, tours of Havana, and nightly dance performances and live shows. Havana is also home to many other festivals including the Havana Ballet Festival, Salsa Cuban Festival, International Cuban Dance Festival, and many more.


A street performer dances on stilts in the streets of Havana.


Regardless of how you chose to experience Cuban dance, opportunity, lively music, and rich cultural experiences await. From the friendly heat of a sunny afternoon to the steamy energy of a humid tropical night, Cuban dance is everywhere. Let go of yourself and enter into the way and sway of the music and the thrill of the experience.


Author’s Bio:

 Kathleen Goodwin is a writer and educator from the United States. Over the past year, she spent four months backpacking through 16 of America’s national parks and traveled for three months in India and Nepal, and she is already scheming and dreaming of her next trip. She loves travel because of the opportunity it presents to experience new cultures, meet new people, and eat new foods. She enjoys reading, writing, practicing yoga, gardening, and hiking. She lives in Missoula, Montana, with her husband Zack and their dog Sadie. Connect with her online at her website,, or on Instagram @kdgoodwin11.

Cover photo:

Photo cred: Yoeztudioz via Wikimedia Commons


Travel Cuba in 30 days for less than $2,200

By | Blog, Cuba | One Comment

August has arrived and that can only mean one thing here at Eccentrips, it’s time for a new country! So get your dancing shoes on and let those mojitos flow, as all this month we’re focussing on that most forbidden of travelling fruits, Cuba. From the idyllic landscapes of this island paradise to its vibrant city streets, Cuba is alive with colour and full of character. But its divisive politics and bureaucratic nature can be a minefield for us travellers to navigate. So whatever your politics, let us show you how to budget for everything this truly captivating country can throw at you.

When to go

First things first, for anyone thinking about packing it all in and booking a one way ticket to Cuba right away, it might be better to wait a while. The hurricane season runs from June-November, with the worst weather starting just about now. Hold off too long though, and you might get caught in another hurricane, one of tourists and higher prices in the December-March dry season. As always, go for the shoulder seasons of November-mid December and mid March-April. They offer some of the cheapest prices without getting caught in any hurricanes of any kind.


Okay, so this is a tricky one. Cuba has two currencies, with different exchange rates, so it’s important not to get the two mixed up! The official currency is the Cuban Peso (CUP), which is locked by the Cuban government at 26.50 CUP = $1/60 INR. Most of the time you’ll use the Cuban Convertible Peso (CUC), which is pegged to the US dollar at 1 CUC = $1. This is what you will exchange your foreign currency for at Cadeca exchange houses, and receive from ATMs. Try to get a commission free credit card or a Monzo account set up before you go, so you can withdraw CUC from ATMs without getting charged by your bank. Most credit and debit cards will work in Cuba, but it’s better to confirm this before you go. Don’t even bother if you’re from the US, in which case you’ll have to rely solely on cash. And you better make sure that’s not the US dollar either, which incurs a 10% charge, on top of the 3% charge for all currency conversions. Told you it was a tricky one!

Look at all that fresh goodness!


Where to begin? Cuba has certainly had its fair share of troubled history. The revolutionary spirit that swept the island in the 1950s has all but gone, leaving in its place an outdated, bureaucratic and oppressive Communist state. Between the government’s policies and the US embargo it has consequently weathered for decades, the economy has suffered, paying citizens an average salary of just $20 per month. In spite of all this, Cuba has retained its magic, and the fire that drives so much else on the island is slowly working its way into the economy. This has resulted in a confusing system for travellers to negotiate, caught between clunky government owned enterprises and a burgeoning private sector, both of which exploit the tourist industry. Read on a bit further to find out the impact of this on your daily expenses.

Before you go


Right, time to get some wings! For the full low down on how to get the cheapest flights every time you travel, check out the example featured in our last budget article on Kenya. Using the same combination of Skyscanner, Google Flights and Momondo, the cheapest deal I could find was a return flight from New Delhi to Havana, on 07/11-6/12, with Aeroflot for $920/45,000 INR. A 25 CUC Cuban airport tax should be included in the price of the flight, but if not you’ll have to pay this when you arrive. You could also try splitting your journey by searching for two lots of flights. If you find a better deal this way let everyone know in the comments section!

The cheapest flights often involve awkward layovers, with this route including a full day and overnight stop in Moscow on the outward leg, before continuing early the next day. Now you can either view that as an inconvenience and additional expense, or you could make the most of it and add a new dimension to your trip. If you’ve been following us lately, you’ll know just how tempting Russia can be. So why not get yourself a Transit Visa for $60/3800 INR, and spend a full day exploring Moscow?

Early morning flights often mean wasted accommodation costs. After all, you’re going to be sleeping on the plane anyway. So if you’re looking to cut costs as much as possible, there’s nothing stopping you from finding a good spot to catch some rest at the airport itself. Sleeping in Airports is a great resource for finding the best spots to sleep in almost every airport in the world. It even has info on where to find free showers, wifi, charging points and many other essentials. Once you travel enough, you see everyone else doing it all the time, so why not give it a go yourself and save some mojito money!


All visitors to Cuba will need a tarjeta de turista (tourist card), available in advance from travel agencies, airlines and even on arrival. It can cost anywhere between $30-$85/1900-5400 INR, and an extra $25/1600 INR to extend or replace. As of September, the Trump administration is placing more restrictive control over US travel to Cuba. The policy hits independent budget travellers hardest, so if you’re reading this in the States, be sure to do your research before going.


Government vaccination programmes differ around the world, so it is always best to check with a doctor before you travel anywhere, and budget accordingly. You should always have travel and medical insurance for any trip, but for Cuba it is mandatory. If you don’t have it already, it’s available to purchase on arrival for 3 CUC/180 INR per day.

Trust us, you wannabe healthy to experience this beauty!!

Final preparations

A few things you’ll have to budget for in Cuba on top of all the usual stuff:

  • Spanish phrasebook or app, as English is not widely spoken ($5-$10/300-600 INR)
  • Worldwide travel adaptor compatible for types A/B/C/L ($10-$20/600-1200 INR)
  • Prepaid local SIM card rental with Etecsa (3 CUC/180 INR per day + 10 CUC/600 INR credit)
  • Nauta card internet access, providing up to 1 hour on wifi hotspots (2 CUC/120 INR per card)
  • Money belt ($10-$20/600-1200 INR)
  • Total = $55-$210/3500-13,300 INR

Get me to the awesome

There’s so much more to Cuba than the iconic pastel colour streets and classic cars. Its beauty and diversity will amaze you with every amazing experience you have. And there is certainly no shortage of these! Let’s take a look at budgeting for all that Cuba’s incredibly rich history, culture and landscape has to offer. Oh, and don’t forget to party too!

Live it up in La Habana

  • In the bars… Havana’s streets come alive at night, and it can be a great way to meet fellow travellers and locals alike. La Bodeguita del Medio and El Floridita are the iconic bars, but their fame comes at a price. Instead, head over to Bar Monserrate or Lluvia de Oro for cheaper drinks and better vibes. Mojitos are the drink of choice! Join the locals and dance the night away at just $2-$5/120-300 INR a glass.
  • On the dance floor… Get those hips moving and tango long into the night at any one of Havana’s clubs like El Gato Tuerto, Casa de la Musica or Club 1830. Entry ranges from free to $5/300 INR.
  • To the music… Jazz is still alive and kicking in Havana, at the famous La Zorra y El Cuervo and at the Association of Cuban Writers and Artists. Or you can bop along to other Cuban styles like son, trova and danzon that fill the streets all day and night at spots like Plaza de la Catedral. Entry ranges from free to $5/300 INR.
  • Along the Malecón… Wherever you spend your night, end it with all the other revellers having fun along Havana’s arcing promenade. Average night out = $10-$20/600-1200 INR.

Discover the capital’s rich history

  • Colonial architecture… Walking through Habana Vieja (Old Town) is like stepping back in time. Most of the buildings here are centuries old, offering a fascinating insight into the country’s origins as a Spanish settlement. Morro Castle, Fort San Salvador and Castillo de la Real Fuerza guard the city, while Plaza de San Francisco and the Plaza del Armas provide a grand setting to spend an afternoon relaxing. You can visit sites like the Cathedral of Saint Christopher, the Museum of Havana and many other such sites for around $1-$5/60-300 INR per entry.
  • Revolutionary history… The Museum of the Revolution provides a detailed though obviously biased portrait of this turbulent period of Cuban history. It’s housed inside the presidential palace of former deposed dictator, Fulgencio Batista, and costs $5/300 INR.   
  • Vedado district… The Plaza de la Revolucion and its surrounding streets provide a much more genuine view of the Communist regime. Beyond the towering monuments to the heroes of the revolution, you’ll discover the city’s poverty and crumbling facades. Nevertheless, the people keep these streets alive, with artwork spilling out from every building along Callejon de Hamel and elsewhere at Fusterlandia, on display for everyone completely free of charge.

Explore Cuba’s other cities

  • Santa Clara… It isn’t just Havana where you can discover Cuba’s revolutionary past. Santa Clara hosts an exhibit to the decisive battle that took place there in 1958, along with a monument, mausoleum and museum to Che Guevara ($5/300 INR).      
  • Trinidad… Frozen in time, this colonial city was once the sugar capital of the world, with streets still dominated by the plazas, churches and mansions from another era. Check out Manaca Iznaga tower for views across the sugar plantations of Valle de los Ingenious ($1/60 INR).
  • Cienfuegos… The only Cuban city where they speak French, these streets are adorned with immaculate white marble buildings, at sites like the Parque Jose Marti and Palacio de Valle, with prices ranging from free to $5/300 INR per entry.

Catch some sun on the beach

The most convenient beach escapes to get to from Havana can be found at Matanzas and Varadero, but these are also the most expensive. Alternatives around the island include Playa Ancon, Casilda Bay and Rancho Luna, but with over 3,000 miles of coastline to choose from, why not find your own slice of paradise instead for free.

Cuba is all about the sun, beach and happy vibes!

Experience Cuba’s wild heart

Away from the cities and beaches, Cuba continues to dazzle the visitor, inspiring all kinds of adventures with its unique wildlife and gorgeous scenery:

  • Climb Cuba’s highest mountain, Pico Turquino, in the Gran Parque Sierra Maestra (Park entry, overnight accommodation and guide fees for the two day hike = 65 CUC/4300 INR).
  • Go cycling around the Viñales valley, a beautiful agricultural region framed on all sides by giant limestone formations (1/10 CUC or 60/600 INR per hour/day).
  • Go for a dip in Cueva de Saturno, a huge open cave, flooded with crystal clear blue waters. Admission = 5 CUC/300 INR, or extra if you plan on going snorkelling or scuba diving.
  • Explore the abundant wildlife at Varahicos Ecological Reserve, a haven for Cuba’s native species. Located right next to Varadero’s beaches, it offers a convenient window into the wild heart of Cuba, without having to go too far out of your way (5 CUC/300 INR).   

A day in the life

With so many experiences to have, you’re going to want to squeeze as much out of your budget as you possibly can. So it helps to know exactly how much you’re likely to need in a typical day. Cuba’s often bewildering combination of public and private enterprise makes planning for this all the more difficult, so we’ve done it for you!


Steer clear of government run hotels, as prices are at an all-time high. In fact, with a 30% rise in tourists since 2015, prices everywhere in the tourism industry are increasing. You can still find good deals in the growing private sector though, such as at Casas particulares (private homestays). Think Airbnb, but with a distinctively Cuban feel. With many hosts providing free cooking and dancing lessons, your stay is sure to be full of good memories, while learning about Cuban culture from the locals. While many of these Casas are listed on Airbnb, the best way to find a place anywhere in Cuba is through Homestay. However, at around $20-$35/1200-2200 INR per night, it’s still not the cheapest option. Hostelworld features some good deals for around $10-$15/600-900 INR per night. Even cheaper still, Couchsurfing is worth considering too, though with such restricted internet access in the country, this might be harder than usual to organise.


When it comes to getting around, now it’s time to use the public sector. A wide range of private taxis serve within Havana and other cities, but the fares many tourists are willing to pay has completely priced out most budget travellers. Instead, go for local buses within Havana as they’re virtually free, literally costing only 0.40 CUP/$0.01/1 INR per journey. To get around the country, Astro is the cheapest state-run bus company, but not very reliable. Viazul is by far the best, serving destinations all over the island on a regular daily schedule and costing only a little more (5 CUC/300INR per hour). For US citizens, things are a little more complicated. The Trump administration has recently introduced proposals to ban all American tourists from spending money with state-run enterprises, coming into effect in September. So again, if you’re from the States, be wary of this and don’t land yourself in jail just for a cheap ride!

Grab a quick ride in one of these beauties if you can!


Avoiding state-run enterprises won’t be too difficult for this one, as their food just sucks! While it is relatively cheap, the best street food you can hope to find is plain burgers and ham sandwiches. For a more authentic experience of Cuban cuisine, without spending too much, try going to a Paladares (private eatery). They are often harder to find and prices are a little higher, but for the most part they serve nothing but tasty, wholesome, and still pretty cheap food for you to enjoy! Here’s some of the best street food you can get your hands on and how much you’ll pay for it:

  • Coppélia ice cream (1 CUP/$0.04/2.5 INR per scoop)
  • Guava milkshake (3 CUP/$0.10/7 INR)
  • Coconut pie (3 CUP/$0.10/7 INR)
  • Tamale with meat/egg/fruit/cheese (15 CUP/$0.50/30 INR)
  • Wide variety of sandwiches (35 CUP/$1.30/80 INR)
  • Goat platter or any main meal (40-60 CUP/$1.50-$2.25/100-140 INR)
  • Total for one day = 120 CUP/$4.50/300 INR

Okay, gimme the numbers

Type of Expense Average cost per day Total cost (30 days)
Flights $920 / 45,000 INR
Russian Transit Visa $60 / 3800 INR
Visa $50 / 3,000 INR
Health $3 / 180 INR x 30 = $90 / 5,400
Final preparations $150 / 9,500 INR
Night out in Havana $10 / 600 INR x 5 nights = $50 / 3000 INR
Old Havana sites $5 / 300 INR x 3 sites = $15 / 900 INR
Cuba’s other cities $5 / 300 INR x 6 sites = $30 /1800 INR
Cuba’s wild adventures $85 / 5600 INR $85 / 5600 INR
Accommodation $15 / 900 INR x 30 = $450 / 27,000 INR
Transport $5 / 300 INR x 30 = $150 / 9,000 INR
Food $5 / 300 INR x 30 = $150 / 9,000 INR
Total = $2,200 / 140,000 INR


Author’s Bio

Alex is a traveller, adventurer, and all round go-getter from the UK. Having navigated his way through 37 countries by the age of 23, he’s got a huge wealth of experience and loads of epic stories to share. Look out for more articles coming from him soon as he gets his blogging and travel writing under way.

Top things to do in the gorgeous, lively Cuba!

By | Blog, Cuba | No Comments

Popularly known as the destination where the famous international sequel film – Fast & Furious was shot, Cuba remains to be an amalgamation of much more than just a movie destination and pretty beaches. Cuba is one of the largest islands among the Caribbean islands and is popularly known for its indefinable magic of culture, warm citizens, art and a homely feel. Increasingly becoming popular as a holiday destination for tourists, Cuba is seeing a higher rise in the numbers with every passing year. With innumerable museums, countless art galleries and tonnes of eateries to try out, the island remains to be one of the top-most chosen places to visit! We list down some of the most interesting & must-do activities that one should try during their holiday in the beautiful island of Cuba.

When to visit Cuba?

Cuba could be visited at any point of the year for adventure geeks who are up and about to travel and explore any place all year round. For the luxury traveller who is looking at a more favourable time of the year, should opt for visiting Cuba between November and March where the temperatures aren’t soaring high and the rains are comparatively less which would help one holiday stress-free!

Top things to do while in Cuba

  1. Drive in a Classic Vintage Car:

Your trip to Cuba is incomplete without taking a drive in a Classic Vintage Car all around the city of Havana. The modern colourful city has ample of sights to check out and local markets to explore! There isn’t any better way to drive around a classic beauty or be chauffeur driven in style! One could rent out vintage cars with or without drivers and move around the city, just like a local.

A Vintage Car in Cuba /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Go for a sunset walk on El Malecon, Havana:

Every place in the world views a sunset. However, there are only a few places in the world where one could view a beautiful sunset along with the natural ambience. El Malecon in Havana is one such place where one could walk or jog along an 8 kilometre paved road which runs along the sea and has a range of rich historic buildings housed opposite the sea making it a pretty view to take in after a long day of being touristy!

The 8km paved road alongside El Malecon, Havana /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Take in the rich history at Parque Céspedes, Santiago de Cuba:

Parque Céspedes is one of the most interesting areas in Santiago de Cuba. It is surrounded by romantic & colonial Cuban architecture which could have you immersed for hours. One could also visit the Bronze Bust of Carlos Manuel de Cespedes, the one who initiated the idea of independence for Cuba in 1868.

Soak yourself in the rich history of Parque Céspedes /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Enjoy some Beach Time at Playa Maguana, Baracoa:

The imaginary picture of best beaches around the world would be clear water, white sands and exquisite corals and fishes to look at! Well, you shall find all of these at Playa Maguana which is one of the best beaches of Cuba. The beach is a heaven for swimmers who would love to explore the coral reef at a stone throw distance. For others, the beach is a perfect place for some sun-bath and you could walk around the coast for delicious street food.

Enjoy the beautiful beach of Playa Maguana, Baracoa /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Learn Salsa Dance and Explore Water Sports in Trinidad:

Trinidad is known for some of the best beaches, unlimited mojitos and for those with two left feet who would love to learn some salsa dance! Sounds like a great combination? On your trip to Cuba, visiting Trinidad should be mandatory. One could easily spend a day in the town to engross into its interesting culture of night-life, visit the ‘outdoor museum’ which is a World Heritage Site and make the most of the beach by engaging in some professional water sports.

Explore Water Sports in Trinidad /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Snorkel & Dive at Cayo Jutias:

Cayo Jutias is one of the best beaches in Cuba specially known for snorkelling and diving and viewing the Black Coral. The height isn’t more than 15 meters which makes it favourable for a starter who does not know deep sea swimming. The town also houses an interesting metal light-house which was constructed by the USA in the early 1900’s.

Enjoy some snorkelling time and dive into the Cayo Jutias /Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Smoke a Cuban Cigar

Smoking up a Cuban Cigar is a cherry on the cake to your trip. Even if you are a non-smoker, one should opt to just take a picture for memory sakes with a Cuban smoke. It is this majestic island where fine grade tobacco is grown and further processed into factories. If you are one who is interested in understanding the process, you could visit the Partagos factory which hosts organised tours to show tourists their business.


  1. Opt for a Home-stay with the Locals:

It is advised that on your trip to Cuba, for a few days in whichever city – one could opt for a home-stay with local Cuban families. Known to be extremely warm & friendly, the option remains to be an ideal one. Through your stay with a family, one could learn their culture, language and enjoy some home-made food & cocktails! It is best to choose your stay with the family while drafting your itinerary from your resident country to be able to share your plan and for them to be prepared for your arrival.

  1. Drink the Best Mojitos & Eat the Best Street Food in the World:

Interestingly, mojitos were invented in Cuba and so there isn’t a reason to not sip on one when you are in that country itself! For anyone trying out the drink, make sure to request you bar tender to add a little Havana Club Rum which is the authentic taste and way to enjoy a real Cuban mojito. As for street food, you could choose to eat Goat platters, Pork Burgers and Individual Hawaiian Pizzas which are drool-worthy. For those with a sweet-tooth, opting for some coconut pies and drinking some yummy fruit milkshakes remains to be the best and healthy option while in Cuba.

Drink up some local Cuban Mojitos with Havana Club Rum / Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons

  1. Experience a silent day at Christopher Columbus Cemetery:

 The Cemetery is one of the most notable structures with exquisite architecture in all of Latin America. Designed by the famous Spanish architect Calixto de Loira y Cardoso, the cemetery’s construction was spread over a time-course of almost fifteen years. The monument sized cemetery is a living proof of how rich the country was in its culture & skill. It also importantly acts as final resting place for many notable Cuban and international residents. 

The gorgeous Columbus cemetery!

Budgeting right when in Cuba

Chalking out a budget especially for an international trip can be tricky but is helpful and easy once you get to the place. While planning a trip to Cuba, one must have an idea about the place, its currency and a rough estimate of the costs. The Cuban currency is known as Pesos and the costs involved for meals, stays and travelling are slated on a medium range. For travellers, one could opt for the option of paying by cash at all places but it is suggested to not keep too much cash handy for safety sakes.

To provide a wholesome idea of an approximate budget which you could follow while visiting  Cuba, we have drafted a detailed table for better understanding:

LOW-RANGE (CUC 70 $) MID-RANGE (CUC 70 – 140 $) HIGH-RANGE (CUC 140 $)
Low Budget Hotel: CUC $ 25 – 35 Mid-Range Hotel: CUC $ 50 – 100 Resort or Historic Hotel: CUC $ 200 – 300
Meal in government-run restaurant: CUC $ 10 – 15 Meal in private restaurant: CUC $ 15 – 25 Car Hire or Taxi: CUC $ 60 – 70
Museum entry: CUC $ 1 – 5 Víazul Bus Travel from Havana to Trinidad: CUC $ 25 Evening cabaret: CUC$35–60

Statistics Table Credit: Lonely Planet

Lastly, Cuba is one of the most serene and pretty islands in the world, especially for its warm people, colourful culture and pristine beaches. With innumerable activities and places to explore, Cuba is a country that will surely surprise you in every way possible and will keep you wanting to visit it again.

Author’s Bio

Kirti is an avid traveller & writer who is hoping to write a book one day. She is a media geek by profession and is a strong believer of Love, Faith & Hope. She is a scorpion at heart, who loves socialising and is a proud mother to an adorable Beagle puppy named Romeo!