Useful info for first-timers to Cuba

Some Cuban cigar brands alexbrn/Flickr

Some Cuban cigar brands ©alexbrn/Flickr

Have you never been to Cuba before? This magnificent country is an excellent tourist destination, dragging millions of tourists yearly. It is a real paradise for the lovers of sun and sea, but also for the lovers of salsa, cigar and coffee. The country offers numerous tourist attractions and destinations for visitors of all ages and all kind. If you’ve never been to Cuba before, the following guide might help you with some useful info. Below I will try to give you the best and most useful info for first-timers to Cuba. These aspects will include information relating to local transportation, shopping, accommodation and so on. Read on to find out more!

Getting there

Cuba is an island country. Thus, you have two opportunities to get there: by airplane or by water. There are numerous direct flights from many US cities to Havana for instance. Whatever you choose, you will easily reach the country. Before traveling make sure that you have a valid passport and also a tourist card. Tourist cards are available at the airports. The tourist card is important for allowing you to stay for maximum three months in the country (from the date you entered). The card is valid for one entry.

La Habana del Este ilkerender/Flickr

La Habana del Este ©ilkerender/Flickr

Local transportation

Cuba is a very well developed country in terms of local transportation. It is proud for its taxi services, not to mention the car and motorcycle rental services. Bus and train services are also great. If you are planning to make excursions or tours within the country, it is good to contact the tourism desk of your hotel. They will surely help you. Sightseeing tour buses are also great ways to explore the major cities.

Accommodation

High brand hotels are present in numerous cities and resorts of Cuba. From All-Inclusive, 5-star hotels to mid-range and budget hotels, you’ll find every type of accommodation here. There is an extra option dedicated especially for backpackers, looking for cheap accommodation. These are the Casas particulares. These are actually rooms offered in homes of local people. Staying at a Casa particular is very popular in Cuba.

Terrace of a Casa particular Male Gringo/Flickr

Terrace of a Casa particular ©Male Gringo/Flickr

Shopping

You will surely want to buy some great souvenirs and local products. The most common ones are the cigars, the rum and the coffee. The country is famous for its tobacco, coffee and sugar can plantations. These Cuban products are world renowned. There are several small shops, stores, shopping malls and markets where you can find these products.

Some Cuban cigar brands alexbrn/Flickr

Some Cuban cigar brands ©alexbrn/Flickr

Culture

You probably heard about Cuban culture. Cuban people are very open-minded, friendly, positive, kind and welcoming. They love to dance, love to sing and to attend festivals. Cubans are an interesting mixture of different races. About 30% of Cubans are black, the rest white, but for them color doesn’t matter. They just consider themselves Cubans.

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