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How to get there and how to move around Cuba


Among the islands of the Caribbean, Cuba is the one that exercises the most bewitching charm in the collective imagination. It will be for its engaging rhythms, for its colors, for its history full of epochal events, between difficult moments and profound changes.

The island of Cuba attracts a steady stream of curious explorers, attracted by its always pleasant tropical climate, by the low cost of living, by its picturesque villages immersed in green valleys and by its unforgettable beaches. Getting involved in the cheerfulness of its population and the slow passage of time in its alleys is the best way to get to know the country and get in tune with this island of a thousand faces.

Let's see together then how to get there and how to move around Cuba!



Index

  1. Where it is
  2. Main geographical areas or tourist areas Cuba
  3. Useful Tips
  4. User questions and comments

Where it is

The Republic of Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean Sea, considered the largest single island in the archipelago and one of the most influential states in the Caribbean. It is located between the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.
To the north are the United States and the Bahamas, Mexico to the west, the Cayman Islands and Jamaica to the south and Haiti to the south-east.

Main geographical areas or tourist areas Cuba

Cuba boasts a variety of landscapes and places of interest really noteworthy: from the colorful buildings of Havana, full of history and suggestions, to the animated life of Trinidad's sounds and liveliness, from the endless kilometers of the beaches of Varadero to the lush vegetation of the Viñales valleys.

Here how to easily reach every corner of the island and enjoy its infinite beauty.



1 - Havana

The capital of Cuba is a gem not to be missed. Its historic center, Habana Vieja, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982. Do not miss its main squares, Plaza Vieja, Plaza de Armas, Plaza de San Francisco de Asis and Plaza de la Catedral, their colonial buildings, their churches and museums that trace the life of the Cuban heart.

They are definitely worth visiting the symbolic places of Cuban life such as the Hotel Nacional de Cuba, the Museo de la Revolución, the Capitolio or La Plaza de la Revolución. Getting lost in the alleys of the Paseo del Prado and admiring a sunset over the Malecón are mandatory activities, before heading into an iconic venue such as the Bodeguita del Medio for a moijto.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

To reach Havana, the reference airport is theJosé Martí International Airport. It can be reached from Italy in about 11 hours of flight, usually with a stopover in Madrid. The route is covered by airlines such as Alitalia, Iberia and Blue Panorama and the average price for a flight from Italy is around € 300,00 / € 400,00.

The airport is located about 20 kilometers from the city center and you can move from the terminal to the capital by taxi for about € 20,00 / € 25,00; the buses do not pass through the airport.

For move from Havana it is possible to use the official taxis, the buses of the Viazul company or the colectivos taxis. With taxis, a trip of about an hour costs less than 10,00 CUC (approximately € 9,00).



  • Reference airport: José Martí International Airport
  • Recommended means of getting around: bus and taxi colectivos, rental car
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 25,00 per room -
  • Welcome to Havana: Private Tour with Local Guide Old Havana: Small Group City Walking Tour

2 - Cinfuegos

Cinfuegos is nicknamed the "Pearl of the South" with good reason. Its pastel-colored buildings, the typically Cuban colonial buildings of its historic center and the wonderful natural sceneries that surround it are made to conquer the heart of every visitor.

Unmissable in Cinfuegos are Parque José Marti, the heart of the city, the Catedral de la Purisima Concepcion and the Spanish colonial-style Tomás Terry Theater. Points of interest to consider are also the Benjamín Duarte Culture House and the Paseo del Prado, the main street of the city, perfect for admiring local craft shops. There Cienfuegos coast is dotted with caves and coral reefs, and the most famous of its naturalistic gems is El Nicho, within the Topes de Colantes Natural Park: a splendid waterfall of crystalline water surrounded by dreamlike vegetation.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

The closest airports to Cinfuegos on which airlines depart from Italy fly are the José Marti and Juan Gualberto Gómez. The cheapest and fastest flights from Italy land at José Martì, in about 11/14 flight hours. The service is offered by companies such as BluExpress, Alitalia, Lufthansa, KLM and many others, at an average cost between € 300,00 and € 400,00 each way.

To move from José Martì to Cinfuegos, about 250 km, you can use taxis or taxi colectivos (less than € 25,00). If you fly to Juan Gualberto Gómez, Cinfuegos is about 180 km away. To move from Cinfuegos you can rely on both Viazul public transport and colectivos taxis.



  • Reference airport: José Martí International Airport / Juan Gualberto Gómez Airport
  • Recommended means of getting around: buses, taxis, rental cars
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 35,00 per room -
  • From Varadero: Private Tour to Trinidad and Cienfuegos Cienfuegos: Private Kayak Adventure

3 - Cayo Largo

The "cayos" are the small islands that frame Cuba, perfect to reach by boat to add wonder to the already exciting adventure that a country like Cuba represents. Among the most famous cayos, Cayo Largo certainly stands out, one of the 300 islets of the Los Canarreos archipelago.

Known for the its beach considered among the most beautiful in the world, the islet explodes with nature, crystal clear waters and underwater life to be discovered. The most famous coasts are Playa Sirena and Playa Paraiso both located in the western part of the island. Ideal for diving and snorkeling lovers, who will fall in love with the colorful sponges and submerged caves of this Cuban Eden.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

To get to Cayo Largo from Italy it is necessary take an international flight to Havana or Varadero, and then continue with a local connection to reach this paradise island. The flight to Cuba lasts around 11/13 hours, depending on the stopovers and the stop time at the intermediate airports. The average cost is around € 400 with airlines such as Air France, Air Canada, KLM and Air Europa.

Il internal connection is operated by Cubana de Aviacion, and in about 40 minutes it takes you to the island of Cayo Largo with a cost of € 120,00 / € 150,00. The island of Cayo allows easy walking, or with taxis or shuttles often booked from the same hotels or resorts on the island.

  • Reference airport: José Martí International Airport + Cayo Largo Del Sur (CYO)
  • Recommended means of getting around: feet, cars, taxis
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 55,00 per room -

4 - Varadero

Varadero is the main tourist destination of Cuba, thanks to its 22 km of white sand that slopes gently towards the sea, overlooked by numerous resorts, villas and hotels of large international chains.

Despite being accused of having been distorted over time by its authenticity due to the enormous development oriented towards tourist accommodation, Varadero still remains aoasis of relaxation, with a sea of ​​the most calm and warm and dream beaches. Its lively nightlife completes the package and makes it one of the most sought after and popular destinations in all of Cuba. Not one of the most authentic, perhaps, but certainly among the most beautiful in terms of landscape.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

To get to Varadero, thethe reference airport is Juan Gualberto Gómez, which is only about 35 km from the area. Flights from Italy take from 14 hours upwards, making stopovers in different European cities depending on the airline chosen for the trip. The most important ones that fly here are Lufthansa, KML, Air Canada, Alitalia and fares generally start from € 500,00 / € 600,00.

For reach the heart of Varadero you can take a Viazul bus, for around € 5,50, or a colectivos taxi which will cost just over the same amount.

  • Reference airport: Juan Gualberto Gómez Airport
  • Recommended means of getting around: bus, bus, rental car
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 30,00 per room -
  • Crocodile Farm & Caribbean: Tour from Varadero Varadero Airport: 1 or 2-leg shared transfer

5 - Trinidad

Trinidad is one colorful Cuban city, also Unesco heritage, imbued with the authentic spirit of the island.

Despite being animated by visitors all year round, it manages to keep its genuine soul and is the perfect destination to spend days of pure relaxation, between excellent local food, nights with live music and cocktails with unique flavors. Its Plaza Mayor is often enlivened by engaging Caribbean dances and sounds, while from its hills you can enjoy some of the most exciting sunsets in all of Cuba.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

It is possible to fly both at José Marti and Varadero airports, the Juan Gualberto Gómez, but most of the fastest and cheapest flights from Italy land at José Martì International Airport. Approximately 11 hours of flight required and between € 300,00 and € 400,00 each way allow you to reach Cuba, and you can then move from José Martì to Trinidad with shuttles, taxis or colectivos taxis: the distance is about 330 km, and it takes about 4 hours (the cost is about € 30,00 / € 35,00).

The distance between Trinidad and Juan Gualberto Gómez Airport is approximately 270 km. To move from Trinidad you can then use the Viazul buses or the particular taxis.

  • Reference airport: José Martí International Airport / Juan Gualberto Gómez Airport
  • Recommended means of getting around: bus and taxi
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 35,00 per room -
  • Trinidad and Cienfuegos: private tour from Havana

6 - Viñales

The Viñales Valley is a natural paradise of inestimable beauty. Who loves the contact with the most spectacular and unspoiled nature here he finds bread for his teeth.

This green corner surrounded by lush mountains was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site and allows you to explore tobacco and coffee crops, fruit and vegetable crops, and breathtaking cave systems such as the Gran Caverna de Santo Tomás. The silence of the valleys is interrupted only by the voices of the local fauna and those who love to get in touch with the local culture can here visit tobacco factories and farms, getting to the heart of more traditional Cuban life. The small town of Viñales also hosts colonial houses, such as the Casa de la Cultura, interesting museums such as the Municipal Museum of Viñales or the Municipal Adela Azcuy Labrador Museum, and botanical gardens such as the Jardín Botanico de las Hermanas Caridad y Carmen Miranda.

It can be visited all year round however the best period remains the dry season, from mid-November to mid-April, especially the months of December, January and February.

How to get there and how to get around

L'José Martí International Airport it is about 182 km from Viñales, just under 2 and a half hours. After a flight from Italy of about 11/14 hours, usually with at least one stopover, it is possible to reach Viñales from the airport with a colectivos taxi for about € 15,00.

  • Reference airport: José Martí International Airport
  • Recommended means of getting around: buses, taxi colectivos, cars
  • Where to sleep nearby: Hotel and b & b starting from € 32,00 per room -
  • Viñales Valley: full-day tour from Varadero

Useful Tips

Moving to Cuba from Italy is simple and there are several airports that cover the island. Finding cheap flights is possible, if you monitor the prices and you book well in advance. In addition to the main airports mentioned above, Cuba it also has internal airports, mainly dedicated to local flights.

Getting around Cuba is possible either by using public transport or by immersing yourself in local life and using the characteristic colectivos taxis. Renting a car is a great alternative and allows flexibility and autonomy.

  1. Inside cities like Havana or Trinidad, the advice is to move on foot, to find hidden corners and off the main tourist routes.
  2. It is possible to explore some areas of the island by bicycle or horseback riding: special and unique ways that allow you to get to know the most real areas of the Cuban island (for example, the valleys of Vinales).
  3. When using colectivos taxis or similar vehicles, remember to bargain on the price before the start of the ride: as often happens in many tourist places, sometimes the drivers tend to inflate the fares.
  4. When staying in Cuba, one of the most original and Cuban places to stay are the private houses: often it is the managers themselves who then help customers in organizing their travels on the island.
  5. Planning your own itinerary and trying to book bus tickets, excursions or cruises in advance is a good way to avoid wasting precious time in choices and negotiations, and to have a better organization of the day.

Travel informed: useful information

  • Capital: Havana
  • Population: 11.239.004
  • Area: 109.884 sq. Km
  • Languages: Spanish
  • Currency: Cuban convertible peso (CUC) and Cuban peso (CUP) / Exchange rate: € 1,00 = 1,11 CUC and 29,36 CUP
  • Documents: Valid passport, tourist visa (to be obtained before entering the country, valid for 30 days and extendable for another 30) and health insurance
  • Time zone: - 6 h compared to Italy, - 7 h when summer time is in force in Italy
  • vaccinations: no compulsory vaccination
  • Travel / health insurance: recommended.

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