Don’t fancy the chill of winter or if you are looking for a cheap winter sun holiday, Cuba is made for you. There’s rarely been a better time to visit this island nation. A lot of people forget that Cuba is much more than just beaches.
Cuba is culture, nature, history, magic and traditions all rolled into one. It is the result of the blend of multiple cultures, fusion of races and customs that gave birth to one of the most unique and fascinating Caribbean destinations that has been time locked for the last 50 years.
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Winter is Coming!
Between November and April is the dry season and the best time to visit. Winter temperatures in the Caribbean are reliably around 26 to 27?C and there?s plenty of sunshine. The average temperature is 21 ?C (69.8 ?F) in January.
There are two currencies circulating in Cuba, Cuban Pesos (CUP) and Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC).
CUC (pronounced kook) is the currency most tourists will use in Cuba. CUC is accepted at hotels, official taxis, entry into museums, meals at restaurants, etc.
CUP are also known as local pesos and are referred to as “Moneda Nacional” (National currency). There is a limited range of goods that can be bought using local pesos and are found in agricultural markets or from street vendors.
Daily costs can range from CUC $70 up to CUC $140. Hotels rooms rates begin at CUC $25-35 per night for a Casas Particulare while a resort or historic hotel will be CUC $200-300. However, prices are at their highest around Christmas and New Year.
In Cuba, you can use some credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Access, Eurocard) but I recommend always carrying cash.
Tipping in Cuba is important. Since most Cubans earn their money in CUP leaving a small tip of CUC$1 (MN$25) or more can make a huge difference.
Lodgings ? take your pick!
Cuba has a wide hotel network ranging from luxury resorts, 3, 4 and 5-star hotels to bungalows and villas, from aparthotels and hostels to tourist communities, as well as private houses for the accommodation of visitors.
Click here if you want to look at some options.
Children in Cuba are often well accommodated due to the family-oriented nature of the community. Few eating establishments turn away children, however, servers in most cafes and restaurants will very often play with your kids and may go out of their way to try to accommodate their tastes.
Cuba?s road infrastructure and transportation system link all parts of the country with the bus service being the most used.
Bus The state-run V?azul network links most places of interest to tourists on a regular daily schedule. Be advised that local buses tend to be crowded and have no printed schedules. (Best of luck getting the bus you want)
Car Rental cars are quite expensive, and driving can be a challenge due to the lack of signposts and ambiguous road rules. If you wish to rent a car, you will need a valid international driving license and passport.
Taxi There is a good (with reasonable prices) taxi service in all major cities and tourist regions, and you can rent cars and minibusses at most hotels and agencies in all cities and tourist areas.
Train Despite its large train network, Cuban trains are slow, unreliable and lacking in comfort.
Top Things to do in Cuba
Cubans love children and invariably children love Cuba back. There’s something wonderfully old-fashioned about kids’ entertainment here, which is less about sophisticated computer games and more about messing around in the plaza with an improvised baseball bat and a rolled-up ball of plastic.
The Best Regions for Children
The streets of Habana Vieja can’t have changed much since the days of the Pirates of the Caribbean, so your kids’ imaginations will be allowed to run wild in forts, squares, museums and narrow streets.
Along with Cuba’s largest amusement park (Isla del Coco), and its best aquarium (Acuario Nacional), Havana has the Parque Maestranza (Bouncy castles, fairground rides and sweet snacks overlooking Havana Harbor) and Parque Lenin (A more ‘rustic’ playground rides, boats, a mini-rain and horses for rent)
Cuba’s biggest resort has the largest stash of specifically tailored kids’ activities, including night time shows, organized sports, beach games and boat trips.
The south coast’s southern gem is awash with economic Casas Particulares, an ideal opportunity for your kids to mix and mingle with Cuban families. Throw in an excellent beach (Playa Anc?n), easily accessible snorkelling waters and a profusion of pleasant pastoral activities (horseback riding is popular) and you’ve got the perfect non-resort family option.
>>> Related Post – 7 of the Best Beach Toys
Winter Holiday Beach Vacation
Your trip to Cuba will be characterized by its people who are imaginative, joyful, unprejudiced, and are friends of joking and celebrating. While you are there, you won?t want to miss the carnivals, charangas, the parrandas, the countryside parties and the patron saint?s days.
We visit Canary Islands next on our winter sun destination list but before you go there, read more about the essentials by clicking here.
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