What makes Cuba Unique

Cuba is a unique travel destination due to its vintage charm, rich history, vibrant culture, stunning beaches, and the unique mix of Spanish, African, and Caribbean influences. The country is known for its classic cars, colourful buildings, and the world-famous cigar culture. Cuba also boasts a thriving music and dance scene, delicious cuisine, and a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Whether you're exploring Havana's colonial streets or soaking up the sun on the white-sandy beaches, Cuba offers a one-of-a-kind travel experience.

Top Highlights in Cuba

Cuban cuisine

Cuba offers a unique culinary experience, with delicious dishes such as ropa vieja (shredded beef), moros y cristianos (black beans and rice), and tostones (fried plantains).

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Santiago de Cuba

The cultural capital of Cuba, with a strong Afro-Cuban heritage, lively music scene, and historic landmarks such as the Moncada Barracks.

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A charming port city, with French-inspired architecture, a picturesque bay, and a lively cultural scene.

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Havana's iconic seaside promenade, with views of the ocean and historic buildings.

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Cuba's top beach destination, with miles of white sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters.

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Viñales Valley

A scenic countryside region, known for its tobacco plantations, stunning mogotes (limestone hills), and outdoor activities such as hiking and horseback riding.

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A well-preserved colonial town, with cobbled streets, pastel-coloured houses, and a UNESCO World Heritage site.

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The vibrant capital city, known for its colourful buildings, lively music scene, and classic cars.

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Travel Ideas for Cuba

Birds of Cuba

Discover the spectacular birdwatching spots in Cuba. At Gran Parque Natural Montemar on the Ciénaga de Zapata, you may catch a glimpse of the world's smallest bird, the Bee Hummingbird. Look out for the Cuban Trogon, with its red, white, blue, and green feathers, and the rare Bare-legged Owl. Don't miss the Cuban Parakeet, Cuban Swift, the Cuban Tody, and of course, the Flamingo, usually seen in flocks. Cuba is a birder's paradise, waiting to be explored!

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Sailing in Cuba

Welcome aboard for an unforgettable sailing adventure in Cuba! This 8-day tour is the perfect way to explore the dreamlike sailing area of the Caribbean. Enjoy the constant sunshine, steady trade winds, and the unspoilt coves and islands. We will start and end our journey in the charming old port town of Cienfuegos. From there, we will sail to Cayo Guano del Este on the first day, then continue on to Cayo Largo and the nearby small islands. Many of these islands are uninhabited and just waiting to be explored. We'll discover an incredible abundance of marine life, including turtles, flamingos, lizards, and iguanas in the crystal-clear, shallow waters. This area is rarely visited by other yachts, so we'll have the sailing area all to ourselves. Cayo Largo is a bit more touristy, and we'll find a few bars there to enjoy. We'll also take small boats from our anchorage to go diving or snorkelling. Divers and non-divers will be enchanted by the stunning Caribbean beaches in these untouched coves.

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Follow in the Footsteps of Che Guevara on a Harley Davidson Tour of Cuba

Explore Colonial Havana, cruise through the lush Viñales Valley, visit the fascinating colonial towns of Cienfuegos and Trinidad, and follow in the footsteps of Che Guevara on his legendary motorcycle journey through Latin America. Relax on pristine white beaches and soak up the vibrant Cuban culture. This unique tour on a Harley Davidson takes you through the highly interesting west of Cuba. You'll discover the colonial towns of Cienfuegos and Trinidad, the colourful city of Havana, and the stunning national parks. You'll also get the chance to relax on white sandy beaches and experience the authentic Cuban culture. Don't miss the opportunity to explore the heart of Cuba and ride the legendary Harley Davidson, the perfect way to discover the beauty and charm of this fascinating country.

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Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Cuba is during the dry season from November to April, when temperatures are mild and rainfall is less frequent. During this time, visitors can enjoy the beautiful beaches, explore the cities and towns, and participate in outdoor activities such as hiking and biking. This is also the high season, so prices can be higher and there may be more tourists.

The wet season from May to October is also a good time to visit Cuba for travellers who don't mind the occasional afternoon rain shower. The temperatures during this season can be hot and humid, but it is also a quieter time with fewer tourists and lower prices.

It's worth noting that hurricane season in the Caribbean runs from June to November, with the highest risk in September and October. Visitors should be aware of the weather forecast during this time and consider purchasing travel insurance.

Important Information for Your Travel Plans

Special Travel Tips from our Experts

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Where to Stay

  • Hotels: Cuba has a range of hotels, from budget to luxury. The country has many iconic historic hotels, particularly in Havana, such as the Hotel Nacional de Cuba and the Hotel Inglaterra. There are also many all-inclusive resorts along the beaches in Varadero and other coastal areas.
  • Yachts and Catamarans: For a unique and luxurious experience, travellers can rent yachts or catamarans to explore the coastline and nearby islands. There are several companies that offer this service, particularly in Havana and Varadero.
  • Casas Particulares: Casas particulares, or private homes, are a unique accommodation option in Cuba. These are essentially bed and breakfasts run by local families, and they offer a more personalised experience. Casas particulares are especially popular in Havana and Trinidad.
  • Guesthouses: Guesthouses are similar to casas particulares, but they are run by the government rather than private families. They offer a more affordable alternative to hotels, particularly in smaller towns and cities.
  • Eco-Lodges: Cuba has several eco-lodges that offer a more sustainable and nature-focused experience. These are particularly popular in the rural areas of Viñales and the Sierra Maestra.
  • Camping: Camping is a popular option in Cuba, particularly in the national parks and beaches. There are several campsites around the island that offer basic facilities such as showers and toilets.

Getting Around

Cuba is a beautiful and unique country with a rich history and culture. Here are some ways to travel around Cuba:

  • By Bus: Cuba has a reliable and extensive bus network, with several companies operating services between major cities and towns. The Viazul bus service is popular among tourists and offers comfortable and air-conditioned coaches.
  • By Taxi: Taxis are a common way to get around in Cuba, and there are two types of taxis: official state-run taxis and private taxis. Private taxis can be more expensive, but they offer more flexibility and can be a good option for exploring smaller towns and rural areas.
  • By Car: Renting a car is a convenient option for exploring Cuba, especially if you want to visit more remote areas. However, be aware that the roads in Cuba can be challenging, and road signs and directions are not always clear.
  • By Bicycle: If you enjoy cycling, Cuba is a great destination for cycling tours, especially in rural areas. There are several tour operators that offer guided tours and equipment rental.
  • By Train: Cuba has a limited rail network, with services between Havana and other cities. However, the trains can be slow and unreliable, and it's usually easier and faster to travel by bus or taxi.

Overall, the best way to travel around Cuba depends on your budget, travel style, and the destinations you want to visit.

Travel Themes Most Common for Cuba

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Local Cuisine

Cuba has a unique and flavorful cuisine that combines Spanish, African, and Caribbean influences. Here are some of the most popular local foods to try in Cuba:

  • Ropa Vieja: A classic Cuban dish made with shredded beef that is slow-cooked with vegetables and spices.
  • Moros y Cristianos: A common side dish of black beans and rice that is commonly served as a side dish.
  • Lechón Asado: A traditional roasted pork dish that is typically marinated with citrus and garlic.
  • Tostones: Fried plantain slices that are commonly served as a side dish or snack.
  • Picadillo: A flavourful ground beef dish that is cooked with tomatoes, olives, and raisins.
  • Yuca con Mojo: A dish of boiled yuca (cassava) that is served with a garlic and citrus sauce.
  • Arroz con Pollo: A classic Cuban chicken and rice dish that is seasoned with spices and vegetables.
  • Flan: A popular Cuban dessert made with caramelised sugar and a rich custard.

Other local specialties in Cuba include Cuban sandwiches, which are made with ham, roasted pork, Swiss cheese, and pickles, and Guava pastries, which are sweet pastries filled with guava jelly. Cuban coffee, which is strong and sweet, is also a must-try when visiting the country.

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Festivals & Public Holidays

Some noteworthy festivals and holidays that tourists may enjoy:

  • Carnaval de Santiago de Cuba: One of the biggest and most famous festivals in Cuba, the Carnaval de Santiago de Cuba is a vibrant celebration that takes place every July. It features colourful parades, music, dancing, and a variety of cultural activities.
  • Festival del Habano: The Festival del Habano is a celebration of Cuba's world-famous cigars. The festival, which takes place in February, includes tastings, seminars, and other events related to cigars and the tobacco industry.
  • Festival Internacional de Jazz de La Habana: Held annually in Havana in December, the Festival Internacional de Jazz de La Habana features jazz musicians from around the world. It is a popular event for both locals and tourists, and offers a chance to experience the city's vibrant music scene.
  • Fiestas de San Juan: This celebration, which takes place in late June, is a religious festival in honour of St. John the Baptist. It is a time for feasting, music, and dancing, and includes traditional rituals such as jumping over bonfires.
  • Cuban Revolution Day: Celebrated on July 26th, Cuban Revolution Day marks the anniversary of the start of the Cuban Revolution in 1953. It is a national holiday and a time for patriotic celebrations, parades, and speeches.
  • Christmas and New Year's Eve: While not traditionally celebrated in Cuba, Christmas and New Year's Eve have become increasingly popular in recent years. Many hotels and restaurants offer special holiday menus and events for tourists.

These are just a few of the many holidays and festivals celebrated in Cuba throughout the year. Tourists visiting the country should check local calendars and events to plan their visit accordingly.

When to Start Planning your Trip

Currency & Payment

EU citizens visiting Cuba should bring euros or other non-US dollar currencies to exchange for Cuban convertible pesos (CUC) or Cuban pesos (CUP). 

Cash is the most commonly used form of payment in Cuba, and it's recommended to have both CUC and CUP on hand when travelling to Cuba. Credit and debit cards issued by European banks are accepted in some places, but the acceptance is limited and unreliable, so it's important to bring enough cash to cover all your expenses during your trip.

ATMs are available in major cities, but they are not always reliable, and they may run out of cash or not accept foreign cards. It's recommended to withdraw cash at banks or exchange offices, and it's important to bear in mind that there is a 10% penalty for exchanging US dollars, so it's better to bring euros or other non-US dollar currencies.

It's also worth noting that some hotels and tourist facilities may accept payment through international credit cards or bank transfers, but this is not the norm, and it's always a good idea to have cash to hand.

Overall, it's important to plan ahead and bring enough cash to cover all your expenses during your trip to Cuba, as payment options may be limited, and reliable electronic payment systems are not widely available.


Cuba is generally considered a safe destination for tourists. However, there are some security risks that travellers should be aware of and take necessary precautions to avoid.

Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and theft, can occur in tourist areas, particularly in Havana and other major cities. Travellers should be careful with their belongings, especially in crowded places, and should not leave their valuables unattended. It is also advisable to avoid carrying large amounts of cash and to use a money belt or a secure bag to store important documents and money.

Cuba is a one-party socialist state with a strong security apparatus. The Cuban government maintains a close watch over visitors and their activities, and travellers should be aware that their communications and activities may be monitored by the authorities. Political demonstrations and protests are not allowed, and travellers should avoid any activity that could be perceived as political.

Additionally, the U.S. government has issued travel advisories warning U.S. citizens about the risk of arbitrary detention and arrest by the Cuban government. U.S. citizens should be aware that the Cuban government may view activities such as journalism, academic research, and religious activities as threatening to national security.

Overall, while Cuba is generally considered a safe destination for tourists, travellers should exercise caution and be aware of the potential security risks. It is advisable to research your destination, follow the guidance of local authorities, and take necessary precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

Visa & Immigration Rules

EU citizens travelling to Cuba for tourism purposes are required to obtain a tourist card or visa, which can be secured through the Cuban embassy or consulate in their home country or through your Tripedeo Travel expert. 

In addition to a tourist card or visa, EU citizens travelling to Cuba are required to have a valid passport, with at least six months of validity remaining beyond their intended stay. Travellers may also be asked to provide evidence of onward travel, such as a return ticket, as well as proof of sufficient funds to cover their stay.

Upon arrival to Cuba, travellers may be subject to a health screening, which may include a temperature check and/or COVID-19 testing. It is recommended that travellers also obtain travel insurance to cover any medical expenses while in Cuba.

it is important to check with the Cuban embassy or consulate in your home country or your Tripedeo expert for the most up-to-date information on entry requirements and any necessary documentation, as these requirements can change at any time.

Health & Hygiene

As a tourist, it is important to take care of your health and well-being during your stay in Cuba. Here are some tips:

  • Vaccinations: You should ensure that your routine vaccinations are up-to-date, including tetanus, measles, mumps, and rubella. Additional vaccinations, such as hepatitis A and B, may be recommended depending on the areas you will be visiting and the duration of your stay. Consult with your Tripedeo Travel Expert or your doctor for recommendations.
  • Food and water safety: To avoid food and water-borne illnesses, you should only drink bottled or boiled water and avoid ice in drinks. You should also avoid street food and only eat food that has been cooked thoroughly.
  • Mosquito-borne illnesses: Cuba is at risk for mosquito-borne illnesses such as dengue fever, Zika virus, and chikungunya. Use insect repellent, wear long sleeves and trousers, and use mosquito nets in areas where these illnesses are prevalent.
  • Sun protection: Cuba has a sunny climate, and it is important to protect yourself from the sun by wearing sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses.
  • Medical facilities: Cuba has good medical facilities, especially in its major cities. However, medical treatment can be expensive, and it is recommended that you have travel health insurance before your trip.

By following these tips, you can ensure a safe and healthy trip to Cuba. Additionally, it is important to be aware of Cuba's specific regulations regarding medications and medical supplies. Some medications may not be available in Cuba, and some medical supplies may require a special permit. It is recommended that you check with the Cuban embassy or consulate in your country before your trip.

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