Visiting the recently open country
- + 11
North America10 days / April 2019
Highs & Lows
Taking a drive in a classic car.
Not preparing for all the paying politics in Cuba.
After looking through choices with my family, we finally chose Cuba. A country that had just opened to tourists again some years back and seemed like a great option to get to know a new country and relax as well.
Our trip started in Havana, where we took a taxi right out the airport and drove for a while towards the center of the city. We finally got to the Hotel Inglaterra, right by the square where everything was flooded with music, sunlight and classic cars.
The city was a surprise for us from the first moment there; even though a huge part of the city still was torn and affected by the history of the country, the places that have been renovated and fixed up were stunning. There was so much to do in the city, we weren’t still for one minute. There were great places to eat, mostly food that seemed home made and was delicious, music shows all around, and a lot of historical sites to visit and enjoy. We got to see the Buena Vista Social Club music show, we found a jazz club called La Zorra y El Cuervo and we got to drive and walk by the Malecon, the gorgeous seaside. One thing to be very aware of are the paying politics in Cuba, they don’t receive most credit or debit cards and nothing from American banks; there are a few cash machines, but my biggest advice is to be prepared to pay for most stuff in cash.
While in Havana we had the chance to take a daytrip to Cuevas de Bellamar, a beautiful natural location about one hour and a half drive from Havana; you can easily take a taxi over there. The caves are incredible and you’re able to tour around them, walking by the stalactites, stalagmites and just marvel at nature; as well as visit a nice museum on site.
After visiting Havana, we went to Varadero for a few days, to take the chance to relax and just enjoy the sun and sea for a few days. Varadero is on an edge of the island, filled with resorts and a nice place to relax and walk along the beach between the different hotels.
Q & A
What would you have changed?
Prepare better for paying politics.
Anything go wrong during the trip?
We forgot to purchase Wi-Fi cards at the hotel and were disconnected for a few days.
How was the food?
Really good, mostly homemade and very very good. Sometimes it’s a good idea to just follow people offering you spots in restaurants.
What tips would you give a friend?
Check beforehand for any small trips you may want to do.
It’s warm so be sure to pack light clothes and a swimming suit, if you’re planning to walk be sure to take comfortable shoes that won’t be too warm.
I am a fan of walking, so mainly that; besides that, it’s best to take taxi rides specially since most of them are in those amazing classic convertibles.
I make most of my reservations on Expedia or directly on the hotel websites.