Whether you are planning a trip to Cuba or you have been to the island country many times, there is a lot to discover. Cuba is an island nation located in the northern Caribbean Sea, where the Gulf of Mexico meets the Atlantic Ocean. The country includes the island of Cuba, as well as several smaller archipelagos.
Located on the island of Cuba, Old Havana is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This old town is a popular tourist destination. The old town is filled with beautiful buildings.
Old Havana was inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1982. This area is surrounded by many hotels and other buildings that are beautiful. Many accommodations are cheap and homey. There are also plenty of places to eat in Old Havana.
Old Havana's best-known landmarks include Plaza de la Catedral and Plaza de Armas. These two historic areas have many museums and other attractions. In the 18th century, wealthy families built homes on the Cathedral Square. Some of these buildings are still in great shape. Other buildings are crumbling, and more than 28,000 people live in them.
The oldest buildings in Havana are not structurally sound, so it is important to stay away from them. The City Historian's Office has recently restored some of these buildings. It also offers free tours of these buildings.
One of the best-known Cuban bars is "Floridita." Hemingway used to hang out here, and got his inspiration for many of his novels here. The bar is very romantic and features a statue of Hemingway and Cuban music. The bar also offers dance classes.
The Almacenes de San Jose is a great place to buy unique souvenirs. It is also a great place to buy handmade items. The building was originally a warehouse. Today it is a thriving market and has become one of the best places to buy handmade items in the city.
Located in the Vinales Province of Cuba, Vinales Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The valley is known for its caves filled with stalactites and stalagmites. It is also known for its lush greenery and wooden houses.
The best time to visit Vinales is between November and May. The weather is mild during this time. During this time, the valley is relatively uncrowded, and the pace of life is slow and relaxed.
There are plenty of places to stay in Vinales. Some hotels have walking tracks into the valley, so it is easy to explore the area on foot.
There is also a natural spring pool at the center of the valley. This is a great place to relax, and enjoy the views of the famous mogotes. There is also a boat tour of the area for a small fee.
For the best views, head to Vinales during the day. This is when the sun rises behind the church and cools down the central plaza.
Aside from the natural spring pool, there are also many other activities to do in the Vinales Valley. One of the more interesting sights is a mural on the mountain wall. The mural is 180 x 120 meters and was designed to symbolize the theory of evolution. It features small creatures, dinosaurs, and humans. The mural was painted in the 1960s.
Another interesting sight is the Cueva del Indio, a cave that is 5.5 kilometers north of Vinales. The cave was discovered in 1920. It was used by indigenous peoples as a burial place. The cave is now a tourist attraction.
Located on the north-eastern tip of Cuba, Baracoa is an oasis of natural beauty. It is a quaint town, and the surrounding areas have long been a source of inspiration for local artists.
Baracoa was founded by Diego Velazquez in 1511. The town is located on the shores of the sea, where Christopher Columbus anchored in 1492. Although the town had no roads for centuries, a scenic roller-coaster highway was built through the mountains in 1965.
The town is home to some of the best-preserved ecosystems on the island. Baracoa National Park includes terrestrial and marine areas. It also includes El Toldo mountain, rainforests, and offshore reefs. The Toa Biosphere Reserve is located nearby. The reserve is home to the third-largest river in Cuba, the Arroyo del Infierno.
The town is also home to one of the Caribbean's most unique mountains, El Yunque. The 589-meter-high mountain offers incredible views of the ocean. Hiking the mountain is one of the best activities in Cuba. You can also explore the archaeological trail in the Toa River Valley.
Baracoa is also home to several ancient fortresses. You can tour the town's archaeological museum, which houses alleged remains of Taino chief Guama.
Baracoa is also hometo one of Cuba's best-preserved beaches, Playa Maguana. Its gray-sand beach wraps around a turquoise bay, and is framed by a mountain range.
Baracoa is also hometo the Caribbean's highest waterfall, Salto Fino. You can hike to the waterfall or take a boat ride on the river.
Located in the south of Cuba, Cienfuegos is a city that attracts many tourists from across the world. It is a small but cosmopolitan town with a pleasant subtropical climate. The city's main attractions include the historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the magnificent Cienfuegos Cathedral. Founded in 1869, the cathedral has two towers and a neoclassical facade. The cathedral also has a beautiful chapel with French stained glass windows of twelve apostles.
Cienfuegos is also home to the largest swamp on the island, a natural reserve that is protected from development. It is also home to pink flamingos in large groups. Cienfuegos is an example of the efforts of Cuba to protect its ecosystem.
Another attraction in Cienfuegos is the town's botanical garden. It is home to over 2000 plants and trees, including palms and cacti. The gardens were founded in 1901 as a research station for Harvard University's Botanical Station for Tropical Research. It is home to the largest collection of tropical plants in the country.
Cienfuegos also has the largest cemetery in Cuba. The Cementerio La Reina is home to many Spanish soldiers who served in the War of Independence. The graves of these soldiers are decorated with baroque marble tombs. The Cementerio La Reina is best seen with a guide.
Another attraction in Cienfuegos if you are interested in art and history is the Palacio Ferrer. This building was once the home of a wealthy tobacco baron. It has been restored and is considered one of the best museums in the city. It also hosts art exhibits and concerts.
Located in the center of Cuba, Trinidad has an intriguing history. Its cobbled streets and colonial buildings make it one of the most beautiful places in Cuba.
Trinidad is an excellent destination for day trips. You can visit the city's main attractions on a guided walking tour or by hiring a car with a driver. The cost to hire a car is around $85.00 per day with insurance.
Plaza Mayor is the main tourist attraction in Trinidad. Its four fenced-in gardens are adorned with ornamental touches and palm trees. It's also home to several museums. The most interesting of these museums is the Museo Historico Municipal, located in an 18th century mansion. It houses a collection of artifacts related to the history of Trinidad.
Trinidad is a colonial town with cobbled streets and buildings that have colorful facades and brick roofs. Many buildings are painted in bright pastel hues. You can also find some paladars, or former colonial homes, with gorgeous patios. It's a good idea to explore the side streets, where you can catch a glimpse of local life.
The Convento de San Francisco is the most prominent landmark in Trinidad. Its tower offers a great view of the city, surrounding mountains, and the flora and fauna of the area. It also offers postcard-worthy photos.
The Museo Romantico is another must-see in Trinidad. This museum houses one of the most impressive collections of colonial furniture in Cuba.
Located on Cuba's northern coast, Varadero is one of the most popular places to stay in Cuba. It is an all inclusive beach resort area known for its beaches, white sand and warm waters. There are many things to do in Varadero, including water sports, nightlife, museums, tours and more.
The best way to see Varadero is to take a guided tour. You can pick up a tour guide from your hotel and the guide will give you advice on what to see and do. Tours are available for US$20 - $30. You can also arrange for a classic car to be picked up from your hotel.
The Varadero Museum is housed in a 1920s colonial beach house, and contains exhibits of art and history. Photographs from the era are also displayed. There are a number of old pre-Castro buildings still in use.
Saturno Cave is a cool natural attraction. The cave is filled with interesting rock formations. It is also home to a natural pool. The fresh water is cooler than the sea, so it is a good place to cool off. It takes about an hour to explore the cave.
The Cayo Piedra Underwater Park is a popular spot for snorkelers and scuba divers. There is a reef in the area, and a number of colourful reef-loving fish species are present. There are also turtles and sharks regularly visiting the park.