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Cuba Holidays

Cuba Holidays

Read more about Cuba

Destination Highlights

  • Idyllic beaches
  • Warm and clear sea
  • Luxury lodgings
  • Vibrant music and dancing
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    Beaches | Hotels | Nightlife | Food | Events | Things to do | Weather | Important information | Reviews |


    What are the best beaches in Cuba?

    Many of the beaches in Cuba are picture-perfect, with coconut palm trees lining the soft white sand, and turquoise waters. There are 430 beaches around the island, so you can enjoy the classic beach experience or explore some more unusual spots.

    • Playa Varadero - A favourite location for all-inclusive holidays to Cuba, and a perfect mix of beautiful surroundings and family fun.
    • Playa Los Pinos - Visit this secluded beach and you’ll be rewarded with stunning white sands. The beach is surrounded by woodlands, where wild horses roam freely.
    • María la Gorda - One of the best-kept snorkelling secrets, teeming with unusual fish that dart amongst the caves, coral, and even shipwrecks!
    • Playa Larga - The local bohemian crowd’s favourite, with plenty of cocktails and live music.
    • Cayo Coco Island - This island’s beaches offer everything from dolphin watching to kitesurf lessons, making it ideal for a day trip.
    • Playa Ancon - If you want to pack everything into your holiday to Cuba, head here. The beach is beautiful, and the nearby city of Trinidad is full of history and buzzing nightlife.
    Cuba beach

    What are the top hotels in Cuba?

    The many luxury hotels of Cuba include huge beachy palaces of family fun, cool downtown spots, and peaceful adult-only retreats. Here’s a selection of the best:

    • Sol Sirenas Coral - Close to Varadero beach, huge pools, plenty of activities to keep kids happy - check!
    • Melia las Americas - A five-star haven for travellers seeking the Varadero lifestyle in an adult-only environment.
    • Iberostar Selection Bella Vista Varadero - The best of both worlds! A luxury spa and pool for you, and a waterpark and club for the kids.
    • Nacional De Cuba - Possibly the most impressive building you’ll ever stay in, and all with five-star rooms and a view of the Havana Harbour.
    • Melia Cayo Coco - Another adult-only getaway. Located close to the beaches of serene Cayo Coco island.
    • Nh Capri Hotel - A central location close to the capital’s best nightlife makes this the ideal hotel to kick back and relax - by the rooftop pool!
    Cuba AI

    What's the food like in Cuba?

    Fans of Spanish, Caribbean, and African foods will be happy here. The local cuisine draws from the best flavours of all three, making for some interesting meals to look out for on your Cuban holiday:

    • Ropa Viega - The national dish, a hearty stew of shredded beef and peppers in a tomato sauce.
    • Yuca con Mojo - A healthy, yet delicious starter of cassava, with a garlicky citrus sauce.
    • Sandwich Cubano - The internationally renowned Cuban twist on a ham and cheese sandwich.
    • Pastelitos de Guayaba - Sweet pastry treats packed with exotic guava fruit.
    • Cucorucho - A palm-leaf cone packed with coconut, honey, pineapple, and nuts.

    Taste buds tingling? Head to these eateries across the island:

    • Doña Eutimia, Havana - A charming and intimate location serving some of the best Ropa Viega in the capital.
    • Kike-Kcho, Varadero - Sample the finest catch of local seafood on the terrace of this marina restaurant.
    • Chez Victor, Playa Maguana - Chilled-out beachside spot serving tasty seafood and cocktails.
    • Camino al sol, Havana - The best veggie food in the city, with daily specials and a fresh pasta bar.
    • Ranchón Playa Prohibida, Cayo Coco - Stay close to the ocean as you dig into this beach restaurant’s famous grilled lobster.
    Click here to book your Cuba beach break »

    Where’s the best nightlife in Cuba?

    Music and dancing are a key part of Cuban culture, and you’ll find many stylish bars in Havana and Trinidad where you can salsa like a local. Beachside resorts have their own evening venues if you’d prefer to chill by the sea with a beer.

    • Casa de la Música, All major towns - These bars are a real slice of Cuban life, with live music and dancing ‘til the sun comes up.
    • El Floridita, Havana - Ernest Hemingway’s favourite haunt, try their signature cocktails and you’ll see why!
    • El Tropicana, Havana - An open-air nightclub that puts on spectacular shows - think Cirque du Soleil, Cuban style!
    • Casa de la Trova, Trinidad - Experience authentic Cuban salsa with friendly locals and live musicians.
    • Cafe Fortuna, Trinidad - A cosy bar with a quirky design, you can even sip your rum in a bathtub!

    What events can I go to in Cuba?

    Colourful music and dance celebrations run throughout the island’s calendar. If you’re ready to march to a different beat, plan your 2022 holiday to Cuba around these events:

    • Havana Jazz Festival (January) - An internationally renowned festival showcasing the finest in global jazz talent.
    • Habanos Festival (February) - Celebrating another of Cuba’s famous exports, the cigar. Try the best brands out for yourself at a tasting, or join a tour of the local factories.
    • Celebration of Classic Cars (March) - Any self-respecting car enthusiast knows that Havana is home to a huge fleet of well-kept classic cars. Check out the parade or get up close with some vintage vehicles.
    • Old Havana: City in Movement (April) - A riotous dance festival where local and international groups display their talents across the squares and buildings of the old city.
    • May Day Celebrations (May) - Did you know that the 1st May is International Workers’ Day? Cuba honours its workers with a huge parade in Havana, where the president gives an annual speech.
    • Festival del Caribe (July) - If you’re aiming for a cheap holiday to Cuba, you can still see the best of local music and dance at this colourful festival’s free concerts.
    • 26 July Celebrations (July) - Unleash your inner rebel at a variety of events dedicated to honouring the revolutionary heroes of Cuba’s socialist history.
    • Symposia de Hip Hop Cubano (August) - If you’re more Jay-Z than jazz, head to this festival to discover Cuba’s unique hip hop scene.
    • Havana Ballet Festival (October) - Salsa isn’t the only dance that Cubans excel at, and this festival showcases the best local and international ballet dancers around.
    • Marabana Marathon (November) - Keep active on your beach holiday to Cuba by joining this sociable race, where you can compete with the best athletes or take a more leisurely pace.
    • Parrandas de Remedios (December) - The island’s most extravagant Christmas festival where you’ll see parades, parties, rumba, and fireworks competitions.
    Cuba Culture

    Things to do in Cuba

    It’ll be tempting to spend your whole holiday lazing on the perfect beaches, but there are some activities you shouldn’t miss out on that are distinctly Cuban in flavour.

    Cha cha cha!

    If all this talk of dancing has got you worrying about your two left feet, don’t despair! Head to the Salsabor a Cuba dance school in Havana, to take a lesson in salsa or other traditional dances.

    Watch out for Jaws

    Cuban reefs are particularly well preserved, making them a favourite spot for sea swimmers. Jardines de la Reina Marine Park is the best place for snorkellers and certified divers to get up close to many species of sharks.

    Snap up a bargain

    Cuba’s flea markets are a great shout if you want to find handmade pieces for your home, or unique souvenirs that will wow your loved ones. Look out for the artists’ stalls in Guardalavaca and Varadero.

    Get a bird’s eye view

    Las Terrazas is an excellent place for more chilled family holidays to Cuba. The natural complex has wild swimming spots where local and international kids play together. But adrenaline junkies can still get their fill! There’s a huge zipwire for all ages that takes you over the treetops.



    Check out our All Inclusive holidays to Cuba!

    What's the weather like in Cuba?

    The island has a tropical climate, which means there are two seasons: Wet and dry. While there is sunshine year-round, the best time to stay dry is November–April. If you’re booking a last-minute holiday to Cuba at any other time, you’ll need to check out the local forecast, as some of the wet months come with torrential downpours and very high humidity.

    Month

    Average temp.

    Sea temp.

    Hours of sunshine per day

    Jan 22 °c 25 °c 7 h
    Feb 23 °c 24 °c 7 h
    Mar 23 °c 24 °c 9 h
    Apr 25 °c 25 °c 9 h
    May 25 °c 27 °c 9 h
    Jun 26 °c 28 °c 8 h
    Jul 26 °c 29 °c 9 h
    Aug 27 °c 30 °c 8 h
    Sep 27 °c 29 °c 9 h
    Oct 26 °c 28 °c 8 h
    Nov 24 °c 27 °c 7 h
    Dec 22 °c 26 °c 7 h

    Click here to book your Cuba beach break »

    Important Information about travelling to Cuba

    How long does it take to fly to Cuba?

    Flights from the UK to Cuba take around 9 hours.

    What’s the time difference between the UK and Cuba?

    Cuba is in the Eastern Time Zone, which is 5 hours behind the UK.

    What currency do they use in Cuba?

    The Cuban Peso is the official currency of Cuba.

    What language do they speak in Cuba?

    The official language is Cuban Spanish, but English is widely spoken in tourist areas.

    Do I need any vaccinations to visit Cuba?

    Please check with your healthcare provider for all up-to-date vaccination advice before booking your holiday.

    Do I need to pay tax on my holiday to Cuba?

    Travellers are required to pay a departure tax of 25 USD when leaving Cuba.

    Do I need a visa to travel to Cuba?

    Yes, the visa you need to travel from the UK to Cuba is called a Cuban Tourist Card and must be sorted out in advance. You can apply here: https://www.cubavisa.uk/#CubaTouristVisa.

    Will Covid-19 affect my holiday to Cuba?

    We are currently closely following the Covid-19 situation and how it affects travel. You can find out the most up to date information about travel to Cuba on the FCO website.

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    Customer reviews

    At On the Beach, we’ve sent many satisfied customers to Cuba for a bit of sunshine. But don't just take our word for it, read some of their 5-star reviews below.

    Jen:


    I love this company have booked many many holidays with OTB and they are great! Customer service is excellent and Lewis S you we’re great sorting out changes for us at weekend we really appreciated your expertise and ease of process to change details of our holiday - thank you for helping us - I will continue to book our family holidays with you as I have done for all of the previous holidays

    Ms Amanda Burroughs:


    Always my first choice for booking holidays. Seamless from beginning to end every time. Great locations, accommodations and prices.

    David:


    We have used on the beach many with no problems at all. Would highly recommend

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    Top Cuba Hotels

    Melia las Americas - Adults Only

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Iberostar Laguna Azul All Inclusive

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Iberostar Playa Alameda Varadero - Adult Only

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Royal Hicacos Resort & Spa - Adults Only

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Iberostar Bella Costa

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Melia Peninsula Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Iberostar Parque Central

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Iberostar Grand Packard

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Ocean Varadero el Patriarca

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Paradisus Princesa del Mar Resort & Spa - Adults Only

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Iberostar Selection Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Playa Pesquero

    Playa Pesquero, Holguin, Cuba

    Melia Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    ROC Arenas Doradas

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Blau Varadero Hotel - Adults Only

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Muthu Playa Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Barcelo Solymar

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Melia Habana

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Memories Miramar

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Melia Cohiba

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Chateau Miramar

    Havana, Havana, Cuba

    Hotel Tuxpan

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Melia Cayo Guillermo All Inclusive

    Cayo Guillermo, Camaguey, Cuba

    Sol Cayo Guillermo All Inclusive

    Cayo Guillermo, Camaguey, Cuba

    Iberostar Mojito

    Cayo Coco, Camaguey, Cuba

    Iberostar Gibara

    Gibara, Holguin, Cuba

    Iberostar Holguín

    Playa Pesquero, Holguin, Cuba

    Be Live Experience Las Morlas

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Melia Marina Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Be Live Experience Varadero

    Varadero, Varadero, Cuba

    Cuba Weather

    On Cuba holidays, you can expect typical Caribbean weather. Temperatures are high all year round so make sure you pack plenty of light and breathable clothing. The wet season runs from May until October and be careful not to visit during September and October, which is the hurricane season! The most popular time to visit is between January and May so expect it to be busy if you choose these months for your Cuba holiday.

    Jan 25ºC
    Feb 26ºC
    Mar 27ºC
    Apr 29ºC
    May 30ºC
    Jun 30ºC
    Jul 31ºC
    Aug 31ºC
    Sep 31ºC
    Oct 29ºC
    Nov 27ºC
    Dec 26ºC

    Landscape

    The beaches in cuba are world famous, most notably for the fascinating sea life that inhabit the warm waters just offshore. Multi-coloured, exotic fish abound in the beautiful blue waters of the Caribbean. Two of the most popular beaches are Cayo Coco and Playa Ancon where sunbathers on holiday in Cuba flock on a daily basis to soak up the sun and enjoy the Caribbean lifestyle.

     

    Things To Do on Cuba Holidays

    There are so many things to see and do on Cuba holidays so you're sure to find something to please everyone, whether you're on a family holiday, a romantic break, or on your own. Try the Acuario Nacional, a great aquarium full of fascinating fish species, or get a glimpse of Cuban history with a visit to the Capitolio Nacional. This was built as the residence of the Cuban Senate and House of Representatives in 1929 and is a fine example Cuba's exquisite architecture.

    And what holiday would be complete without a spot of shopping? Cuba has a great array of shops, from designer boutiques to fantastic markets and little craft shops where you can buy original jewellery and great presents to take home for friends and family.

    Culture

    Much of the architecture in Cuba dates back to the 18th Century. One of the most stunning examples of this architecture is the Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, a beautiful old convent now used as a church and museum. It was built in 1734 and attracts crowds of tourists on holiday in Cuba so make sure you get there early.

    If it's culture you're after, Cuba holidays more than deliver. As with all the Caribbean islands, carnivals are a major event in Cuba. The Carnival de la Habana at the end of July is a gloriously colourful affair with street performers, processions, music, food and costumes. Carnavales Santiago Espirituano also takes place in July with floats and dancing and seemingly endless supplies of food and beer!

    Book a Cuba Holiday now!

    Cuba is a fantastic place, brimming with colour and culture and full of great places to visit and fun things to do. If you want to experience all the charm and beauty of this fabulous island, check out On the Beach for some great deals on cheap Cuba holidays. Take a look today and you could be enjoying the sunshine in Cuba before you know it!

    Cuba Resorts

    Cayo Coco

    Cayo Coco

    Located on the beautiful Jardines del Rey archipelago, Cayo Coco is a paradisiacal island nestled just off of Cuba’s north coast. Boasting some of the…

    Read more on Cayo Coco Travel Guide