Top Tips for First-Time Travellers to Cuba

by Lydia B. Freelance Travel Writer

There are few destinations in the world as unique as Cuba. It can be overwhelming to the senses and also make you think a lot about your own life and the way we grow attached to material possessions. For some people who are expecting a luxury beach vacation, they might be rudely awakened. Cuba is luxurious in its abundance of spirit and fun, but if you’re looking for 5* hotels and infinity pools, you might be better heading to another Caribbean destination.

Here are my top tips for first-time travellers to Cuba!

Visit Havana

Even if you’re on a package holiday which takes you to a sandy beach in Varadero or Guardalavaca, you should still make an effort to get out of your resort and visit Havana. There is so much to see and do in this vibrant and incredible city.

Stay in a Casa Particular

The Cuban equivalent of an Airbnb, the casa particular is a comfortable and classic way to get to know Cuba. You will be staying in a private room in a Cuban family home. You’ll probably eat breakfast with the family and might even be invited to join them for evening meals. It’s a great way to get to know the Cuban people.

Get used to plain food

Some of the food in Cuba is amazing, but you have to know where to look for it. The staple of most meals is a hearty mix of rice and beans, so get used to eating this early on. Rationing is still widespread in Cuba, so you don’t want to be the ignorant tourist complaining about a lack of variety to people who still have ration books.

Leave your watch at home

Things rarely happen on time in Cuba, so it’s best to just stop going by your watch and go with the flow. Adopting the Cuban approach to timekeeping will stop you getting frustrated if buses don’t leave on time or if you have to wait a little longer for food in a restaurant.

Take gifts for the people you meet

Instead of loading up your case with things you don’t need, you should consider taking extra items for the people you meet along the way. Personal hygiene products can be difficult to find in Cuba, so these things are always welcome gifts. Children will also light up if you bring them notebooks, pencils and colouring pencils.

Connect with other travellers

Group tours are a popular way to get to know Cuba. You’ll be in a small group of around 6-8 people and will get to explore the island with the help of a local guide. There are plenty of companies organising Cuba group tours, you just need to make sure it is a local company that works with local people. This is the best way to ensure your money is going to help Cuban communities rather than foreign companies.

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About Lydia B. Junior   Freelance Travel Writer

1 connections, 0 recommendations, 13 honor points.
Joined APSense since, July 2nd, 2018, From Manchester, United Kingdom.

Created on Jul 11th 2018 10:58. Viewed 272 times.


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