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Trip Report

Beautiful and challenging Cuba

We spent 2 weeks in beautiful and complicated Cuba.

by guidoAbout Me:I am a Dutch guy who loves travelling and has seen quite a bit of the world. Recently I quit my job and am travelling through South America for the last 5 months. I love nature and the outdoors but enjoy city life and culture just as much... read more

North AmericaCuba14 days / February 2022

Highs & Lows

Havana and staying with locals

Do not forget to bring cash!

Itinerary Overview

We travelled from Merida (Mexico) to Havana and visited this beautiful capital, Vinales, Trinidad and its beaches. I stayed with very sweet Cuban hosts in a so-called 'casa particulare' during my trip in Cuba. It is a common thing to do and I really recommend it! People are really sweet, you get the best tips and tricks and more importantly, you are able to listen to the stories lying beneath the surface of this beautiful and troubled country.  Thiis way you really get to know politics, history and culture.

  • 8 Nights: Havana
    Havana is a real gem
  • 6 Nights: Trinidad
    Old colonial town and beaches
  • Day trip: Vinales
    The natural beauty and visiting a tobacco farm

Q & A

  • What would you have changed?

    We didn't bring cash to Cuba which is NOT advisable. Cuba has a complicated financial system due to the blockade of the USA. When you bring cash you can ask your host or hotel to change it on the black market to Cuban pesos which makes life 4 (!) times cheaper than when you get your money from an ATM. The first night we had 2 pizzas and 2 beers which cost us almost 70 euros! Don't change your cash on the streets because you can get scammed. My advice is to bring enough cash (US dollars) to last your whole trip.

  • Packing tips?

    There is a shortage of almost everything in Cuba and there are long ques in front of stores. Make sure you bring enough of what you really need (medicine, sunscreen, repellent, etc).

  • Transportation Tips?

    If you are travelling without a travel organisation let your host or hotel advise you on this. Cuba doesn't quite work as you are used to.

  • Booking details?

    We travelled without a booking agent.

Lodging

  • Casa particulare - Terazza de los Pepes. Los Pepes are a really sweet and generous couple. They gave us the necessary tips and tricks for Havana, helped us out with some money-issues (read more about this in this trip-review) and took us out on a day trip.

  • Casa particulare - Marlyn Marlyn and her family are really sweet. Her guestroom is right in the middle of the house. She went out of her way to make our stay as convenient as possible. We rented bikes from them for day-trips and we could use their snorkels for the beach. Really recommended for genuine talks and the best breakfast. Casa particulare - Casa Jose y Fatima. A more established place. The house is a beautiful old colonial building in the centre of Trinidad. Nice and friendly but for us it was a little too hotel-ish.