It all started with my friend Parker sending me a text about going on a trip. We discussed a few different options and then before I knew it we were packing up leaving for Cuba! One of my best friends Samantha jumped on board as well and then we were off.
This place was unlike anything I had ever imagined. It was so fascinating to see the way a communist country lives and what their day to day life is like. They live off of roughly $25 a month because of the government, or they can forgo the $25 and earn money from working and then they have to pay the government about 80% of what they earn! It’s seriously so crazy! A lot of the buildings in Havana are run down, thrashed windows, no roofs, its just nuts. We visited Havana, Trinidad, Veradero and Vinales – all beautiful and interesting in their own way. And yes, they have the old colorful rad cars that you get to drive in everywhere which is so much fun!
Sra Mirtha y Osley Apartment – click HERE
This apartment was a really good location and walking distance to everything!
There is old Havana and new Havana – Old Havana is so rundown with torn up cement streets everywhere, broken into convenient stores, run down shops, etc. Just so crazy to see! New Havana is more developed, has the government housing, and the shoreline which is nice at sunset. If you’re looking to visit here take note that there are ZERO convenient stores or places to buy any snacks, treats, etc. so BRING snacks!! We walked into a gas station in hopes that there would be treats or something and there were only rows and rows of baby food!! Hahaha SO random! Exploring these cities are way fun though and there’s a lot of history to learn about the place.
Ikzal Trinidad – click HERE
Great location – walking distance to everything! The owners were so friendly and helpful with everything!
This is a fun little city with some fun dancing night life. It’s smaller and you can explore in about a day or so. The main plaza has food, dancing, and just a fun scene so make sure to check that out!
This town is so fun to explore! We went horseback riding through the fields and it was SO beautiful! They took us through the tobacco, sugarcane and coffee fields and we got to stop and talk to locals about their way of life here. One thing I do wish that we would have done here is rock climbing – apparently they have some amazing climbs, and I feel like it would have been an incredible experience. The horseback riding is a must though! We just did a day trip here, so we didn’t stay overnight.
Best drink I’ve ever had!!!
Casa Leon y Betty Varadero – click HERE
This was my favorite city! It’s a beautiful beach town and we found a shop with treats!!! haha the simple joys of life! It was the prettiest white sand beach I have ever been to and just the clearest water ever! It’s a little more touristy with little markets and what not, but such a fun town!
– If you’re into rock climbing, make sure to rock climb in Vinales
– Always bargain with the taxi drivers! They overcharge big time at first and you have to talk them down.
– MONEYYYY!!! This is a big one because they don’t have ATM’s there that you can use. You have to exchange beforehand in the airport BUT they don’t like USD so the exchange rate is outrageous. So what we did was before we left the states we exchanged our USD for Euros and then once we got to Cuba we exchanged the Euros for their currency and got a way better exchange rate!
– If you don’t have a ton of time and are debating which cities to see, I would take out Trinidad. If I were to go back, I would take that out and add another day in Vinales or Veradero!