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Best Places In Cuba To Visit

Best Places In Cuba To Visit

When traveling to Cuba, you first have to realize how big of a country Cuba is. Don’t try to pack too many cities into one trip to Cuba; try to focus on visiting the best places in Cuba.

Cuba is 780 miles long and 119 miles wide at the widest point, and if you take a Cuba road trip, you will learn very fast that driving in Cuba takes a long time to get from one city to the other. If you have one week in Cuba or possibly even ten days in Cuba, here are the best places in Cuba to visit.

Cuban flag blowing in the wind

Best Places In Cuba To Visit

Girl leaning on purple classic car in Cuba
Hannah car shopping in Havana for the perfect old car for our Havana city tour.

1. Havana

Most trips to Cuba start and end in Cuba’s capital city, Havana. Havana is a great place to start a trip to Cuba and is one of the best places in Cuba to visit.

As soon as you land at José Martí International Airport, you’ll start to see the old classic cars. Our taxi from the airport to Old Havana was a vintage 1950s American car.

Guide Americans traveling to Cuba 2016-Cuba Cars-1

Stay with a local family in a casa particular or Havana Hotel in Old Havana, as this is the best part of town for all the action and all the things to do in Havana. You could easily spend hours walking around Havana, taking pictures and chatting with friendly locals, but make sure to take a Havana tour in an old classic car for roughly $35 an hour.

If you stay outside of Old Havana, jump in a collective taxi with the locals for 10 CUP; not only is it cheaper, but it is a local experience, too. We suggest staying in Central Havana. Check out our where to stay in Havana guide to explain the different areas of the city.

If you want to prearrange your accommodation, there are over 1,00 hotels on We booked our first two nights. We didn’t want to arrive and be scrambling to find somewhere to stay.

*When looking for the best price and biggest selection of hotels in Havana check prices on, we’ve found they are the best option and have a great cancellation policy.

View of Trinidad Cuba from above
If you’re a photographer wanting to go to the best places in Cuba, you can’t miss Trinidad, Cuba, look at it!

2. Trinidad

Trinidad is easily reached from Havana either by bus or rental car. We rented a car in Cuba and went on a road trip. Trinidad is Cuba’s best-preserved colonial town, and the old quarter of Trinidad is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

There are a ton of things to do in Trinidad Cuba. Let me show you why Trinidad is one of the best places in Cuba.

Related Article: Complete Trinidad Cuba Guide

Girls pointing down the street in Trinidad Cuba
Hannah being a tour guide in one of the best places in Cuba, Trinidad!

Trinidad has something for everyone. From amazing beaches at Playa Ancon, only fifteen minutes away, hiking in Topes de Collantes, visiting El Nicho waterfalls, horseback riding, going late-night clubbing in a cave at Disco Ayala, drinking mojitos in Plaza Mayor, and so many more things to do in Trinidad.

You should spend 2-3 nights in Trinidad. There are over 1,000 Trinidad hotels and Casas right in old Trinidad to base yourself. Trinidad was not just one of the best places in Cuba to visit but our favorite. No other city in Cuba is as photogenic as Trinidad Cuba.

girl relaxing on the white sandy beach of Varadero Cuba one of the best places in Cuba
Hannah just chilling on the beach in Varadero, one of her favorite things to do.

3. Varadero

Are you a beach lover and looking for the best places in Cuba to visit with white sand? Look no further than Varadero. Varadero has more than 12 miles/20 kilometers of white sandy beaches on the Caribbean.

Varadero is a popular Caribbean resort town, but there are still tons of casa particulares available. We stayed with a family one block from the beach for $25 a night.

girl walking on the beach in Varadero Cuba
We felt like we had all 20 km of white sandy beaches to ourselves in Varadero, one of the best places in Cuba!

There are several beach bars in Varadero that have beds set up free for their customers and serve up tasty drinks & beers for only $1-2. Tons of ocean activities, from diving, fishing, snorkeling, kayaking, and much more.

Varadero is one of the best places in Cuba to visit at the end of your trip to Cuba as you make your way back to Havana.

Girl with a horse and guide in Vinales Cuba going through the tobocco fields
Hannah is ready to go exploring the tobacco fields by horse in Vinales Cuba.

4. Viñales

One of the best places in Cuba to visit when looking for authentic Cuban cigars is Viñales. Viñales is 2.5-3 hours away from Havana, but unfortunately, you’ll have to take the same road there & back.

We’d suggest making the trip to Viñales if you have at least ten days in Cuba Viñales has gorgeous landscapes with tobacco fields and barns, making it a picturesque Cuban scene.

Tobacco drying barn in Vinales Cuba
Tobacco drying barn in the tobacco fields in Cuba.

Spend 1-2 days exploring the Viñales Valley, renting bikes/mopeds, and exploring it on or, better yet, by horseback or bull. Get a tour of a local tobacco farm and learn how to roll your own Cuban cigars. Buy some original Cuban cigars right from the source. Viñales Valley was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1999.

girl on a tree branch on the beach in Playa Jibacoa
One of the best places in Cuba we had to ourselves!

5. Playa Jibacoa

Only an hour away from Havana is one of the best beaches in Cuba. Thankfully, not many tourists know about Playa Jibacoa yet. The only way to get to Playa Jibacoa is by car, there are no public buses. If you are driving in Cuba on a road trip looking for the best places in Cuba to visit, you should definitely put Playa Jibacoa on your route.

Related Article: Playa Jibacoa the Best Beach in Cuba

White sandy beach in Playa Jibacoa
We think this picture clearly shows why Playa Jibacoa is one of the best places in Cuba, it’s straight-up gorgeous.

This little slice of heaven is basically deserted. You will have the whole beach to yourself. Playa Jibacoa is right off the highway if you are heading from Havana to Varadero.

Cuba has gorgeous beaches, but not many compare to Playa Jibacoa. Mark my words “Playa Jibacoa will be the next best beach in Cuba.”

Have you been to Cuba? What do you think are the best places in Cuba to visit? Leave your suggestions below in the comments. 



Friday 1st of March 2019

We liked the smaller towns and cities better than Havana. Cienfuegos is charming. We also like Trinidad de Cuba. We spent five days too on beautiful Cayo Santa Maria - all I can say is to choose wisely your all-inclusive resort. Read all the reviews you can and then pick yours. Loved watching the pelicans diving for fish and the fine white sandy beach.

Roxana Andreea

Thursday 22nd of February 2018

May I ask from where did you rented a car? I'm heading there in may and it would be much better to drive through different cities...Thanks

Hannah Lukaszewicz

Friday 23rd of February 2018

We rented our car right at the airport, but we REALLY REALLY lucked out on that. It wasn't a major chain and sorry I don't' remember the name. If you want to rent a car make sure to do it well in advance online.

camryn shonka

Thursday 26th of January 2017

Love all your posts on Cuba! My husband and i are traveling there in a couple weeks and we are interested in visiting Havana, Trinidad, a beach town and horse back riding!! We have 6 days so we will take your advise on not cramming it with too many spots. thanks for all the great advise!

Megan Dorrian

Monday 19th of December 2016

Hi Hannah - Great tips! My husband and I are going to Cuba after Christmas this year and looking for a casa particular in Varadero rather than staying in a touristy chain. Do you recall the casa you stayed in and would you recommend? Thanks! - Megan


Saturday 24th of December 2016

Hope you guys have an amazing time in Cuba. I found his business card! It was Casa Orlando, here is the tripadvisor link Their email is [email protected] they have a child that lives outside of Cuba that will respond to you. They then call the parents in Cuba to reserve your room, since the parents don't have internet at their homes. We booked our casa in person, we just walked up to houses with the sign on the door meaning they had rooms for rent. We looked at a few before we picked ours. I think it was $30 or $35 a night, but was a few minute walk to the beach.


Monday 5th of December 2016

Thanks for the mention in the article. Look forward to traveling there within the next few years.


Monday 5th of December 2016

We had an amazing time in Cuba, biggest mistake was only spending 10 days in Cuba. Next time we travel to Cuba it will be for at least a month. Safe travels.