Visit Parque Nacional Alejandro de Humboldt
Parque Nacional Alejandro de Humboldt is a wide area of thick forest and winding rivers. Filled with hummingbirds, parrots, lizards and the rare Cuban solenodon, Parque Nacional Alejandro de Humboldt is a wildlife lover’s paradise. With being home to 16 species of plants only located in Cuba, this park was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001. If taking a day trip, prepare for extreme humidity, make sure to pack plenty of water and the appropriate clothes.
Learn How to Roll a Cuban Cigar
As many know, Cuba is well known for its tobacco and famous Cuban cigars. When traveling to Cuba, if you choose to light one or not, take a smell of the quality and authentic cigar. If you choose to take some home to share or for personal pleasure, keep them in the fridge on a wet cloth to make them last longer.
Sip on a Cuban Cocktail
Cuban cuisine is definitely something to be enjoyed. Mojitos were originally invented in Cuba and are one of the island's oldest cocktails. Don’t let a day pass without taking a sip on this white rum, sugar cane, soda water, lime juice, and mint mixture. One mojito can easily turn into two with the average price being around the equivalent of $2 USD depending on where you are on island. Bodeguita del Medio is a well-known spot in Havana for a good tasting mojito and sometimes has live music as well.
Take a Morning Swim on Cayo Coco
Take a dip in this turquoise bay and lagoon as the sun rises gracefully above the water. Cayo Coco is a popular tourist destination that can be appreciated at any time of day for those looking to dive, surf, horseback ride or participate in water sports. Located along the north coast of Cuba is the Jardines del Rey archipelago, the most popular island being Cayo Coco. Many claim that the tours offered on the island are some of the best excursions in all of Cuba. Utilize the white sand and warm blue water as a stunning photo backdrop. Keep your eye out for the tropical multicolor fish that enjoy hanging out in these waters. If looking to spend more than just a day in Cayo Coco, check out the multiple inclusive resorts that line the beach, equipped with infinity pools and all.
Take a Salsa Lesson
Havana is the perfect city in Cuba to take a classic salsa dance lesson whether you define yourself as a beginner or advanced. Get extra creative and complete your lesson with an authentic salsa outfit as well. Let go and feel the rhythm of the music. Don’t worry, no one will judge you! Once you master your dance moves, consider planning your visit around April, when the International Cuban Dance Festival annually takes place. Prepare yourself for seven days of nonstop salsa dancing and celebration!
Gaze at Art in Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes
Located in the historic streets of La Habana Vieja, the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes is filled with artistic masterworks from many of Cuba’s historic artistic periods. Museum visitors can come to witness the portrait of Federico Beltrán Masses, the modern sculptures by Rita Longa and the politically-infused paintings of Guillermo Collazo.
Get Lost in Trinidad
Located on the south coast of the island, this laid back town is one of the best places to visit in Cuba. Trinidad is a common place on the island where tourists can interact with the locals. The colonial city of Trinidad was established way back in 1514 and is filled with authentic Spanish charm. Walk up and down the cobblestone roads filled with tiny pueblo cottages painted in pastel colors. Be sure to stop by the famous church, Iglesia y Convento. Looking for a party scene? Disco Ayala is a cave in Trinidad that is filled with exciting nightlife. The entrance fee is 5 CUC and comes with one complimentary drink.
Go on a Sailing Adventure
Cuba has been a popular sailing destination in the Caribbean ever since the Spanish first landed on the island sometime in the 16th century. More modernly, many massive cruise ships have recently added Cuba as one of their ports of call. If seeking a more adventurous experience out on the blue water, and consider chartering a boat from one of 20+ marinas or nautical centers located around the island. Be sure to take advantage of the entire Cuban coastline from dawn until dusk.
Take an Island Cycling Tour
One of the most popular modes of transportation for local islanders and tourists in Cuba is the bicycle. Roll through the country and explore the fresh air and natural beauty. G Adventures is a popular bicycle company on the island that offers 8-day cycling itineraries that travel the whole island. Trips begin and end in Havana and include stops such as Vinales, Soroa and La Palma along the way.
Climb Pico Turquino
Take a few days to stretch out your legs and work off a few mojitos by hiking to the summit of Pico Turquino. There are 2 different routes to the stunning view of the tallest peak on the island. Both take 2-3 days to reach the top, located 6476 feet in the air. The trekking time truly depends on your speed of climbing and level of physical fitness. Those who choose to climb Pico Turquino are actually following the footsteps of the Cuban revolutionary army. While the climb is possible year round, most would recommend climbing during the dry season which falls between the months of October and May.
Whether you are more into art, food, wildlife, the beach, or the unknown adventures to come, you now have a solid list of what to see during your trip to Cuba!
Post Written by: Kirsten Cusack