There are SO many must-see places in Cuba with endless activities and adventure around every corner. It’s one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world right now, and when you visit, you’ll certainly understand why. It’s nearly impossible to get bored in this country!
With its affordable prices, day trips are greatly affordable, and since the country is relatively small, it’s easy to explore it all if given a week or so!
That being said, don’t solely plan on exploring Havana during your Cuba vacation. It’s the perfect place to call your home base, but definitely wander to it’s surroundings to see everything the country has to offer.
Without the right research, your list could be endless. There’s so many tropical beaches, colorful towns, and cute countrysides to discover. However, in this list of 5, I’ve narrowed down all the MUST-SEE places in Cuba!
Here’s a little video to give you a mental picture of what to expect!
Havana is definitely the most iconic, and for a great reason! The city’s exactly what you’d picture it to be in real life. Everywhere you turn you see colorful old buildings and 1950s cars, with live music spilling out of each door and the friendliest locals you’ll ever meet!
There is no shortage of sights either. You could spend all day hopping from museums to historical squares to local markets. My personal favorite way to spend the day was simply getting lost in the colorful and lively alleyways and taking photos ?
2. Playa Larga or Varadero
With the strong tourist pull towards Havana, many people forget about Cuba’s prime location in the Caribbean Sea! This is another thing that makes Cuba so underrated and special. The beaches not only have incredibly clear turquoise waters, but the diving is just as amazing!
Playa Larga is not too far from your home-base of Havana (2 hours), and very few tourists have discovered it, making it the perfect day trip! The more well-known beach spot Varadero is double the drive (4 hours) and triple the people. However, many Cubans agree it’s the most beautiful beach in Cuba with its stretches of white sand and aquamarine hues. Most pictures of it look fake- it’s that gorgeous! I didn’t have time to visit the latter, but it’s definitely on my list for next time!
Have you ever seen the movie Pleasantville? Well, Cienfuegos looks identical to this movie set. Everything from its store fronts to its walkways look straight out of a scene in the 1950s, but with its own Latin flair! It has the same colorful buildings of Havana, but is much more polished and refined, which makes it so unique. It’s about 2 hours from Havana, making it a must-see day trip!
If you have time to continue your journey after Cienfuegos, get in the car and drive another 2 hours to Trinidad. This town is straight out of a dream with its cobblestone streets and bright pastel homes. While wandering around, you’ll see horse-drawn carriages pass by and locals playing dominos on little stools. Trinidad is so charming, it definitely deserves an overnight stay to be properly explored.
For a completely different side of Cuba, a trip to the countryside of Viñales is a must! Here you’ll be surrounded by beautiful horseback trails, flowing waterfalls, and lush palm trees!
After some crazy days (and nights) in Havana, Viñales is the perfect peaceful escape into nature. While there, make horseback riding your main method of exploring!
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Have any other must-see places in Cuba to add to the list? Comment them below! ?