Over two million visitors flock to Cuba every year, and it’s right at the top of travellers’ must-visit lists for 2017. Most holidaymakers tend to go for an All Inclusive resort holiday, but what about the rest of Cuba? There’s plenty to see and do if you get bored of lying on a sun lounger all day.
Cuevo del Indio in Vinales
Cuba’s coastline is dotted with tiny coves, secret beaches and hidden caves. The most famous are the Cuevo del Indio at Vinales, once the home of the native Cuban people. These magnificent caves are full of strange rock formations, and if you take a tour at dusk, you’ll see one of the island’s most spectacular sights as thousands of bats head out for their evening feeding session. Don’t worry; they’re perfectly harmless to people!
Have a meal at a paladar
For a taste of real Cuba, rather than the usual tourist restaurants, check out the family-run Paladares. These are small, local restaurants where you’ll experience the very best flavours and authentic Cuban cuisine, and at a great price too. You’ll also get to see a more relaxed, genuine side of Cuban life.
It’s fiesta time
Cubans love to dance and celebrate, and the island is alive with festivals all year round. The Carnival of Santiago de Cuba is the most popular, where the city of Santiago comes alive with colour, rhythm and dance. The festival is usually held at the end of July, so if you’re in Cuba on a family summer holiday, there’s a good chance you’ll get to see this fabulous celebration, and join in the dancing too.
Explore Habana Vieja
This is the old quarter of Havana, and it’s so important that it’s been made a UNESCO World Heritage site. You’ll find traditional, brightly coloured buildings, churches, forts and monuments as you wander down narrow cobbled streets and alleyways.
Head out to see the Coral Reefs
If you love diving, then you’re in heaven here, because Cuba has one of the top 50 coral reefs in the world. Conservation is important to the Cubans, so you’ll find expert guides who are happy to take you to see this unspoilt underwater wonderland. It’s a great chance to learn all about the marine life in this beautiful part of the world.