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Think Traveling to Cuba is Tough Enough? One Woman is Swimming the Distance

Where: Cuba
August 8, 2011 at 10:02 AM | by | ()

Want to travel to Cuba? Join the club. Despite Obama's January lessening of restrictions for trips to Cuba, a hop down to Havana for mojitos and salsa still isn't an easy feat for Americans. The biggest name in luxury package vacations—Abercrombie & Kent—has just pulled out of their sold-out Cuba trips owing to technical issues, and you may just have to hope for another emergency landing in Havana (thought really, don't).

Of course there's always another option, but it's not for weak of heart or muscle. 61-year-old long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad is breaststroking her way the entire 100 miles that separates Cuba from the Florida Keys, risking sharks and bad weather.

Diana won't be the first to swim the distance, but she will be the first to do it without using a shark cage. She's already accomplished similar feats by swimming from the Bahamas to Florida and circum-swimming Manhattan (gross), but Cuba comes with a political message for greater cooperation between the two countries.

Our favorite part of her journey? The massive support squad: "She will be accompanied by five yachts and four kayaks, and will be backed by a 45-person support team, including trained shark divers and electronic devices designed to repel the predators." Our greatest question isn't if she'll make it or how long it'll take, but how does the paperwork get processed? And can the coast guard stop the group and send them back? Guess we'll find out in a couple days when Diana concludes her swim in the Keys.

[Photo: AFP]

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