In recent years Cuba has been steadily growing as a travel destination and having travelled through this charming country for 10 days, I can see why. Keep reading for my 5 reasons why you need to visit Cuba now!
Unspoiled by tourism
At a steady pace, in true Latin style, Cuba is building a number of hotels throughout this remarkable country to meet the ever-increasing demands of visitors. Along with this the locals understand the importance of tourism and are renovating their homes to welcome travellers. Although this is clearly a good development it’ll probably be best to visit Cuba sooner rather than later, before it gets overrun by tourism. As it currently stands there’s a real authentic feel to Cuba, something very rare in this globalised world we all live in. The colonial architecture, old fashioned vehicles and quaint towns are still very apparent! With this in mind visit now to see something of the original Cuba.
Incredible beauty you must see!
With its comfortable climate, gorgeous beaches, colonial architecture and diverse culture, Cuba has many reasons why travellers fall in love with the country. Along with this you will struggle to find another country with so many vintage Cadillac cars. You will see many of them throughout your trip. A great way to experience them first hand is by taking a tour in one, whilst being driven around and seeing the sights in style. As you can imagine Caribbean beaches are known for their white sand and crystal clear water and Cuba is certainly no exception. From Varadero Beach to Playa Los Flamencos and Cayo Las Brujas, to name a few, there is an abundance of beautiful beaches to choose from!
Music and dance is everywhere
As with the majority of Latin countries, Cubans love to play music and dance. Live music can be seen in restaurants, bars and hotels. As you walk through the streets you may even hear some locals play their favourite music from their homes. From Salsa, Rumba and Jazz you’ll hear a real blend of different styles. Once the music is flowing you’re bound to find people dancing, with real passion and style. You may come across small groups dancing together along with couples dancing the night away. Cubans are well known for their friendliness so don’t be shy to ask for a helping hand with your dance moves whilst sipping Cuban Rum.
Socialism, a unique way of life
An intriguing part of my visit was to see socialism with my own eyes. Cuba is one of the very few socialist countries left in the world. You won’t see any global chains, such as McDonald’s or Starbucks, or giant ads for products we are used to throughout the world. Cuba has had a turbulent recent history and many of the museums and historical sights offer an insight into the Cuban revolution and Fidel Castro’s socialist regime. As the internet is hard to come by you will feel as if you’re almost living off the grid. With this in mind, you will have plenty of time to immerse yourself into this unique culture and see the realities of socialism first hand.
Enjoy the local cuisine
Before travelling to Cuba I was told not to expect much on the food front. A number of my friends had told me everything is bland and there’s a lack of choice. I found the complete opposite. Food is of course very subjective but I found there was a real variety with fantastic tastes. Cuban cuisine is a blend of Spanish, African and other Caribbean cuisines. A typical meal consists of rice and beans along with seafood or meat and a salad side. If you are looking for McDonald’s, Pizza Express or any Western-style chain restaurant, forget it. If you do come across a place which looks slightly Western it’s best to avoid it and head to a more authentic restaurant. You will end up paying a few more dollars more, however, it’s well worth it. Vegan restaurants are few and far between but you’ll be able to find some in Havana. Rice and beans are everywhere, along with delicious vegetables and of course fruits, so all foodies should be catered for.
Rob is on the Tailor-made team at Tucan Travel and enjoyed travelling through Cuba in May 2019. You can view Tucan Travel’s tours to Cuba here.
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