Help me plan a trip to Cuba!
August 16, 2012 1:22 PM   Subscribe

Cuba vacation! Leaving from Montreal, mid-late October.

Yet another travel vacation question! I'm trying to plan a 7-10 day Cuban couple's vacation in mid-late October, leaving from Montreal, Canada. Where should I look?

We've both been to Varadero, Cuba, with day trips to Havana before, and loved it. What I liked about Varadero was the stunning beach, and that my hotel was a close walk into town (I don't like being sequestered on a resort). It was great to be relatively close to Havana and being able to see the historic sights of a city with such rich history. And finally, the price was right. I'm tempted to return to Varadero, as it's been 7 years since I've been, and go back again to Havana as I don't feel I saw nearly enough of such a fascinating place.

So, my question is, are there other spots in Cuba that echo what I liked about staying in Varadero? Or should we just go back to Varadero and spend some more time relaxing and seeing more of Havana? My main criteria is: decent hotel on the beach (3 to 4 stars), cheap, a few things to see walkable from the hotel, and the possibility to do interesting day trips (historic sites, stunning landscapes, and/or unmissable glimpses into Cuban life). Not so interested in things like cigar factory tours or swimming with dolphins.

Places that have popped up on my radar to see include Cienfuegos and Trinidad, any ideas of where to stay nearby to see these places? I've also seen the areas of Holguin and Guardalavaca come up in my hotel searches - anything interesting to do in these resort areas?

So, hivemind, should I book another trip to Varadero? Somewhere else in Cuba? Or even somewhere else in the Caribbean? I also welcome recommendations for sites for comparing the cheapest prices (I've been using Thank you in advance for all your suggestions! :)
posted by exquisite_deluxe to Travel & Transportation around Cuba (1 answer total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Not an answer to your question, but a side point: going in October, you're at risk of having your holiday really negatively affected by the weather. It's hurricane season, and though you're statistically likely to miss a hit by a hurricane, there'll be tropical weather systems drifting through the area frequently. These are huge masses of cloud that can mean 3 days straight of torrential rain, then afterwards beach water all churned-up and unpleasant for several more days, and a really bad mosquito problem caused by the standing water in puddles. If you could wait till November, consistently pleasant weather would is a surer bet.
posted by Paquda at 1:49 PM on August 16, 2012

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