From Kingston, Jamaica we took a flight to Santiago de Cuba, a city located in the south-eastern area of the beautiful island.
Cuba is unique in every single way. The largest island in the Caribbean is known for its tropical weather, unparalleled nature, beautiful white-sand beaches, turquoise waters, rich history, culture, and art, vintage cars and colorful buildings, Salsa music and dance, Cha-cha-cha and Mambo, Cuban cigars, delicious coffee, rum, tasty cocktails like Cuba Libre, Mojito, and Daiquiri, the Cuban Revolution, and turbulent politics. Cuba is a world of its own, a country full of magic and romance, a must-see for every traveler and most definitely an amazing honeymoon destination.
Our eleven-day Cuba honeymoon itinerary (things to see and things to do)
At Antonio Maceo Airport in Santiago de Cuba – the second largest city in Cuba, there were lots of taxi drivers offering us a ride. We really needed one, so we picked the man driving a typical Cuban oldtimer. What a car – on the inside and out! We sat in the back seats, leaned on each other and enjoyed the ride. Our Cuban honeymoon started on a romantic note, but it soon got adventurous – the poor old car broke down after a few miles. We felt sorry for the noticeably embarrassed driver, so Matic went out of the car and started to push it. After a while, the car started again and we were able to reach the casa particular the driver had recommended us. We gave the friendly driver a nice tip, took our luggage and knocked on the door. An elderly lady opened with the biggest, warmest smile on her face. She asked if we needed a place to stay and invited us in. First, she invited us to the kitchen, where she prepared us a welcome drink. We chatted for a while and then she showed us to our cozy, clean room, which even had its private bathroom and asked if it’s okay. It was more than okay – it was perfect. We went for a short evening walk around the old, but charming city.
After waking up in this beautiful casa, our friendly host told us how to get to our next destination. We had breakfast, packed our bags and went to the bus station, where we took a bus to Holguin. There we rented a car for the whole Cuban part of the trip! It wasn’t cheap at all, but we knew the journey would be way more comfortable by car, so we decided to make an exception. After all, it was our honeymoon. 😉 We agreed to drop it off in Havana – our last destination in Cuba.
We drove off to Guardalavaca, a popular tourist beach destination. We were lucky enough to get a nice room in an all-inclusive beach resort – Hotel Club Amigo Atlantico even though we didn’t have a reservation. As soon as we unpacked we went to the beautiful beach. Afterwards, we went to have dinner and then we stocked up on piña colada and returned to the beach for a night dip. 😉 It was magical.
After breakfast, we went to the hotel pool. There, we were swimming, sunbathing, lying around in a hammock, and simply enjoying the day. At the pool bar, we ordered some piña coladas and went to the beach, where we spent the rest of the day. Yes, that was the drill in Guardalavaca – the beach and piña coladas. Boy, we drank a lot of those. 😀
It was time to say goodbye to our amazing beach resort, so we drove off to our next destination – Jardines del Rey, an archipelago off the northern coast of Cuba. The roads were pretty bad, so it took us more than 5 hours to get there. We had lunch on the lovely beach at Cayo Coco, after that, we continued to Cayo Guillermo, and from there to Cayo Santa Maria, where we stayed the night. We were impressed by the countless beautiful beaches, but because of the bad weather, we weren’t able to enjoy them quite as much as we normally would.
We had a pleasant day on the beach in Cayo Santa Maria in spite of the rain. In the afternoon we went to the idyllic town of Trinidad.
Trinidad is a wonderful, old town in central Cuba and a UNESCO World Heritage site. It’s a perfectly preserved Spanish colonial settlement, known for its colorful architecture. After walking its cobblestone streets and remarkable plazas, we went to Playa Ancon, where we enjoyed the rest of the day. Sometime late in the afternoon, we drove to Varadero. We reached our destination late in the evening.
Varadero is one of Cuba’s most popular beach destinations, so naturally, we spent the day at the beach. In the evening we drove to Viñales. We spent the night in a great casa.
The Viñales Valley is one of Cuba’s national treasures and for a good reason – this picturesque green karstic region full of unique mountain formations and rich endemic flora and fauna is simply magical. Later that day we took a ferry to the small island of Cayo Levisa. We spent another night in the same casa in Viñales, but before that, we had a lovely evening with our incredibly kind hosts.
After another scenic ride through the Viñales Valley, we went to Cayo Jutias and afterwards, finally, to Havana.
Havana, the capital of Cuba is known for its rich history, lively culture, great nightlife, beautiful art and architecture and many notable monuments. We took a Hop On Hop Off bus tour of the picturesque city and saw the major attractions. The whole city is so very unique, beautiful and full of life, but for us, the most impressive part was Old Havana. In the evening we went salsa dancing. 🙂
After a lazy morning, we went straight to the airport and from there we flew to Mexico. 😉
♥ Top romantic experience
In Cuba everything is romantic – the sights, the sounds, the tastes, the weather, you name it. You can go for a walk on the beach, have a romantic dinner, go salsa dancing and drink some delicious cocktails, admire their amazing art and architecture, or take a ride in a beautiful vintage car. For us, the most romantic experience was the moonlit night swim in the amazing all-inclusive resort in Guardalavaca.
♥ Top adventure
Cuba can also be paradise for adventurers. Go sailing along the beautiful coast, diving, snorkeling, surfing, parasailing, paragliding, take a bike tour, go horseback riding, or simply rent a car and take a ride through the countryside, like we did – it’s a true adventure! 😀
Are you wondering about the daily budget, the best time to go, visa and immunization requirements, local customs, currency, electricity standards, safety tips and where to stay? Here you can find out all you need to know before visiting Cuba.
Have you already been to Cuba? We invite you to share your top romantic experience and top adventure in the comment section below. 😉
Next stop: colorful Mexico! 😉