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Cuba

Introducing Cuba

Cuba offers a wealth of experiences for travellers seeking adventure, relaxation, and cultural immersion. From its stunning beaches and rich history to its vibrant culture and delicious cuisine, the island promises an unforgettable journey into the heart of the Caribbean.

Spanning over 1,200 kilometres from east to west, Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean archipelago. Its diverse landscape encompasses lush tropical forests, rolling hills, fertile valleys, and over 5,000 kilometres of coastline. The island is also home to several mountain ranges, including the Sierra Maestra in the southeast and the Sierra del Rosario in the west.

Whether exploring the cobblestone streets of Old Havana, lounging on the sun-drenched shores of Varadero, or immersing yourself in the rhythms of Afro-Cuban music, Cuba captivates and inspires at every turn.

Key Information

Continent North America (Caribbean)
CapitalHavana
CurrencyCuban Peso
LanguageSpanish
VisaFCO Advice
VaccinationsVaccination Advice
Tourist OfficeVisit Cuba

History

Cuba’s history is as colourful and diverse as its culture. From its indigenous Taíno roots to its Spanish colonial past and revolutionary struggle, the island has played a central role in shaping the region’s history. Visitors can explore historic sites like the Castillo del Morro in Havana, the Bay of Pigs Museum, and the Che Guevara Mausoleum in Santa Clara.

Culture

Cuba’s vibrant culture is reflected in its music, dance, art, and cuisine. From the pulsating rhythms of salsa and son to the colourful street art of Havana’s Callejón de Hamel, the island is alive with creativity and passion. Visitors can experience traditional Afro-Cuban rituals, sample local delicacies like ropa vieja and moros y Cristianos, and sip on world-famous Cuban rum.

Sports

Cuba has a rich sporting heritage, with baseball, boxing, and volleyball being among the most popular sports. Visitors can watch a baseball game at the iconic Estadio Latinoamericano in Havana, take a boxing lesson at a local gym, or join in a game of beach volleyball on Varadero’s sandy shores.

Cuisine

Cuban cuisine is a fusion of Spanish, African, and Caribbean influences, resulting in a diverse and flavorful culinary tradition. From hearty stews and savoury rice dishes to fresh seafood and tropical fruits, the island’s cuisine is a feast for the senses. Don’t miss classic dishes like ropa vieja, arroz con pollo, and picadillo, washed down with a refreshing mojito or Cuba libre.

Getting Around

Getting around in Cuba offers a unique and diverse array of transportation options, each contributing to the island’s distinctive charm and character. While Cuba’s public transportation system is known for its efficiency and affordability, travellers also have the opportunity to explore the island’s scenic landscapes and vibrant cities through various modes of transport.

One of the most popular ways to travel around Cuba is by bus. The state-run Viazul bus service connects major cities and tourist destinations, offering comfortable and air-conditioned coaches at reasonable prices. This option is ideal for travellers looking to explore the island’s urban centres and cultural landmarks.

For a more adventurous experience, visitors can opt for collective taxis, known as “almendrones,” which are shared vintage American cars that operate along fixed routes in major cities like Havana and Santiago de Cuba. These colourful and nostalgic vehicles offer a nostalgic journey through time while providing an affordable and convenient means of transportation.

In addition to buses and taxis, Cuba has a limited network of domestic flights, allowing travellers to quickly and easily reach remote destinations and islands like Isla de la Juventud. For those seeking a leisurely and scenic journey, renting a car or motorcycle offers the freedom to explore Cuba’s winding coastal roads and picturesque countryside at their own pace.

Overall, whether by bus, taxi, plane, or rental vehicle, getting around in Cuba is an adventure in itself, offering travellers the opportunity to immerse themselves in the island’s rich culture, history, and natural beauty.

Top 20 Things To See & Do in Cuba

  1. Explore Old Havana: Wander through the historic streets of Havana Vieja, a UNESCO World Heritage site filled with colonial architecture and vibrant street life.
  2. Visit Plaza de la Revolución: See the iconic Revolution Square, where historic speeches and events have taken place, and marvel at the towering José Martí Memorial.
  3. Tour the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes: Admire Cuban art from the colonial period to the present day at the National Museum of Fine Arts in Havana.
  4. Relax on Varadero Beach: Enjoy the crystal-clear waters and powdery white sands of Varadero, one of Cuba’s most famous beach destinations.
  5. Explore Viñales Valley: Discover the stunning landscapes of Viñales, known for its tobacco fields, limestone cliffs, and traditional rural life.
  6. Visit Trinidad: Step back in time in the UNESCO-listed town of Trinidad, with its cobblestone streets, pastel-coloured houses, and lively music scene.
  7. Take a trip to the delightful town of Camaguey and explore its streets, history and art shops. Buy yourself a pot.
  8. Dive in Jardines del Rey: Explore the underwater wonders of Jardines del Rey, a pristine archipelago off Cuba’s northern coast known for its coral reefs and marine life.
  9. Visit Holguin or the beach resort of Guadalavaca.
  10. Visit the Bay of Pigs: Learn about Cuba’s revolutionary history at the Bay of Pigs Museum and explore the nearby beaches and coral reefs.
  11. Explore Cienfuegos: Discover the French-inspired architecture and seaside charm of Cienfuegos, known as the “Pearl of the South.”
  12. Visit Che Guevara’s Mausoleum: Pay homage to the revolutionary leader at the Che Guevara Mausoleum in Santa Clara.
  13. Sample Cuban cuisine: Indulge in traditional Cuban dishes like ropa vieja, arroz con pollo, and Cuban sandwiches at local paladares and restaurants.
  14. Experience Cuban nightlife: Dance the night away at a lively salsa club or enjoy live music at a local bar in Havana or Santiago de Cuba.
  15. Take a vintage car tour: Explore Havana in style aboard a classic American car from the 1950s, a quintessential Cuban experience.
  16. Visit Hemingway’s Finca Vigía: Tour the former home of Ernest Hemingway, now a museum, where the Nobel Prize-winning author lived and wrote for over 20 years.
  17. Relax in Cayo Coco: Unwind on the pristine beaches of Cayo Coco, known for its luxury resorts and turquoise waters.
  18. Explore Santiago de Cuba: Immerse yourself in the cultural capital of Cuba, known for its Afro-Cuban heritage, vibrant music scene, and historic sites.
  19. Visit the Cuban countryside: Take a scenic drive through the Cuban countryside, dotted with tobacco farms, sugar plantations, and picturesque villages.
  20. Attend the Havana Jazz Festival: Experience the rhythm and soul of Cuban jazz at the annual Havana Jazz Festival, held in January.

Pre-bookable Excursions in Cuba

More Information

Contact Visit Cuba or your local travel agent or specialist tour operator for more information on holidays to Cuba.

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