Cuba is truly like travelling back in time. Most buildings are a bit worn out, but you will immediately get the feeling of time walking down the streets of Havana and when you will be cruising around the island in an old car from Americas 50s. The locals are friendly and have all the time in the world to talk, play music and watch the street life.
- Currency: Cuban Pesos (CUP) and Cuban convertible peso (CUC) (US$1 = 1.07 CUC)
- Capital city: Havana
- Main language: Spanish
- Best travel time: November to April, during the dry season
- For the newest information check this webpage (for Danes)
- Tourist visa: Most countries need a visa to visit Cuba. It cost approx. 25 CUC (US$25). It is valid for 30 days (90 days for Canadians), but can be extended for another 30 days which also cost 25 CUC. You passport need to be valid for at least 60 days (EU countries, incl. UK) or 6 months after departure from Cuba. You need proof of having travel insurance and a booking of the first two nights in a hotel
- Note: You will need to pay 25 CUC when leaving the country.
Accommodation: There are no hostels in Cuba. Instead you will find lots of hotels (especially near Varadero and other beaches) and casa particulares. Casa particulares are a popular option for accommodation in Cuba. You stay at the local Cubans in their home by renting one of their rooms. It is possible to share a room between two people and sometimes four people. Casa particulares cost approx. 20-25 CUC (30-40 CUC in Havana) per room.
Food: The restaurants in Cuba are owned by the government and are not very good. The best option is to eat in your casa particulares or in paladares (locally owned restaurants in private homes, can be hard to find). Eating locally cost about 6-10 CUC per person including soup, potatoes, meat (often chicken or fish), rice and tomatoes and/cucumber (sometimes you will also get dessert). Note: you can save money, if you buy food in the supermarkets/shops and cook it yourself, but there aren’t many groceries in the different shops.
Transportation: The most common way of transportation between cities is the bus. There are a tourist bus company, Víazul and a local bus Astro (the local bus is allowed to travel with two tourists per bus) and the prices. Go to the bus station early to make sure you get a ticket to your destination. You might also be offered to travel by taxi for the same or a smaller price than the bus. Taxis are really safe. It is also possible to get a lift from a local on smaller trips, but expect to pay for the trip. They are easy to find, just stand near the road. Remember to haggle for a fair price, ask your casa which price is fair.
Budget for Cuba:
If you will be staying in cheap accommodation, eat three meals a day (most of them self-made or bought in supermarkets), using a bit of money on transportation, then you should be able to live for approx. 35 CUC, this is based on two people sharing room. Note: Rum is really cheap in Cuba and beer isn’t that common.