Hot, passionate Cuba attracts with endless powdery beaches, subtropical weather and fascinating history. A mix of exotic cultures, the country has been influenced by Africa, Spain, Jamaica, France and even China, resulting in a colourful mix that defines everything from its music to its people. A bronze goddess of a country, Cuba needs to be visited and a lot.
Cuba has so many layers, once you get under one of them you only discover there is more and more to it. Revolutions, high temperatures and a mix of vibrant cultures have shaped this red-hot country – there is so much more to it than just strong rum and flavoursome cigars. Endless white beaches, lush forests and rugged mountains define the landscape, while the warm, friendly people are the salt of this country. A love affair in Cuba is a love affair with Cuba – passion is in the atmosphere from the magnificent sands of Playa Sirena to the lush fields of the Alejandro Robaina Tobacco Plantation, the hotness of the air is only matching the alluring warmth of the locals. The pine trees and limestone cliffs of Valle de Viñales are as quintessentially Cuban as Havana’s ocean-side boulevard of Malecón.
If Cuba was a time of the day, it would be the sunset: as the sun kisses the old creamy facades of the buildings one last time, gently touching the ocean goodbye, the whole country bathes in its warm, golden shades in a dance that defines a nation. Glorious indeed.
When to go?
As Cuba is based near the equator, you can count on hot weather all year long. However, rainy season goes on from May till October, with September and October experiencing hurricanes so they are best avoided. Therefore, the peak tourist season in Cuba runs from December to May when it is dry and generally not as hot as it is in summer (average temperatures throughout the season start from 21 and end at 26 degrees Centigrade in May) .
If you are going snorkelling and enjoy some diving, August is the best time for you as the water is at its warmest with an average temperature of 30 degrees. It is also incredibly humid and hot, so choose wisely (average temperature of 27 degrees). Avoid June unless you love getting soaked while also boiling (after all Cuba is a thing of extremes!).
What to do?
Cuba is perfect for diving as one of the world’s largest reefs is here – to swim around this underwater beauty, head to the north coast. Visit one of the national parks here showcasing the wonders of local wildlife – Parque Nacional Alejandro de Humboldt is a must as it is boasting “one of the most biologically diverse tropical island sites on earth” according to Unesco (it is also a World Heritage site).
Tobacco plantations and museums aplenty tell the story of Cuba – tobacco and revolutions both have played significant roles in shaping the region. Speaking of which, Plaza de la Revolución, conceived by French urbanist Jean Claude Forestier, is a must visit site in Havana. Of course, you cannot go to Cuba and not go to the beach: sugary, white sands mesmerise with beauty as the sun reflects in the crystal clear warm waters of the ocean. From Playa Jibacoa to Playa Sirena, you cannot go wrong here – the powdery beaches are endless.
Cool, where to stay then?
Quite a lot of choice here. For undisturbed 5-star luxury consider Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa in Guardalavaca with its bungalow-style buildings and peaceful romantic atmosphere. Sol Cayo Coco in (you guesses it) Cayo Coco boasts 4-star facilities, two swimming pools and a tranquil atmosphere, while Iberostar Daiquiri also has two pools, plus three a la carte restaurants to offer to its guests. Then 3-star Villa Tortuga in Varadero is a more affordable option with its lovely sparkling pool encircled by palms – a perfect place to lounge on all day long.
Have you been to Cuba? Share your stories with us, we would love to know it all!