Do yourself a favor and book your flight to Cuba. This country is rich in culture, art, food and endless wonders! In recent years, President Obama has established amicable relations with the Cuban government.
Preparations to travel has been made easier for Americans to visit. You may have heard that a visa is necessary to visit. That’s true, but it’s just as simple as purchasing your visa from your flight gate once you’ve picked up your boarding pass.
The travel visa is $50 and you’ll need to pay with a credit card at your flight gate. There are direct flights available to Cuba from the U.S. depending on which city you plan to visit. Some connecting flights are available in Florida and may be cheaper if you’ve booked with a airline promotion/deal. Currency exchange can be done at the airport. The exchange rate for 1 CUC(Cuban Convertible Peso) is .87 cents (USD). For every $100 bill converted you get 87 CUCs. 1 USD=1 CUC. Some feel it’s better to convert to Euros or Canadian dollars to CUCs, but the difference is marginal(those pennies add up tho!)
Airbnb your stay! In Cuba, “Casa Particulares” is pretty much the equivalent of Airbnb. These accommodations are available throughout the country and are very affordable! If you’re going with bae or friends have a guide on hand, but don’t be too strict with planning. Explore! Allow the locals to point you in the direction of their favorite places. Hop on a bicitaxi (pedicab) and let the driver show you around the city. From Revolutionary Square in Havana hop in a “Cocomovil” (a small vehicle shaped like a coconut) feel the wind in your hair. The car tours in the old fashioned Chevy’s and Ford’s are fun to ride around in and learn more about the city of Havana. It is always a good idea to do a little research on wherever you travel to gain a better sense of what to expect and where to visit once you land. The world knows Cuba for the Cuban Revolution lead by Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. The revolution started in 1953-1959, but the effects are seen in Cuba today.
Much artwork and landmarks found in Havana, Santiago and Cienfuego champion Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. These national heroes are praised for fighting for the plight of the non elite, poor and left winged Cubans.Their aim was to overthrow former president Batista and his right winged ideals and influence from the U.S. and create a communist/socialist society (or civil society) for the people of Cuba. The country is now a socialist state with provisions from the government to its citizens. Museo De la Revolucion in Old Havana is dedicated to exhibits and galleries that take you through that pivotal time in Cuban history.Take time to admire the vivid colors of the architecture in Havana and the city’s encapsulated 1950’s aesthetic. Take pictures! Make new friends and have an authentic mojito with them, enjoy live music, go to the beach, get lost( figuratively lost because wifi won’t save you)My top 3 tips for visiting Cuba are:Plan to visit more than one city if possible (Havana, Vinales, Veradero, Cienfuegos, Santiago, Trinidad etc.)Visit Fabrica De Arte, Cultural Arts Center with art exhibits, live music, international DJs, film and food! (Like seriously, go.)Party with the people of Cuba! In most cases, your trip will be better than you anticipated