Cuba - Advice, Hints, suggestions

Discussion in 'Travel' started by Bad_Crow, May 28, 2007.

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  1. Just about to break into some of my holidays for this year. Decided on Cuba. Well the other half as but i'm gonna agree it looks like a good idea.

    Has anyone ever been who could answer a few questions?

    Before the usual suspects start I don't need any info on the missile crisis.
  2. Do we still need MOD clearance to travel to Cuba?
  3. Had a mate who went think in some area's it can be very pricey for meals etc as they try and tie the tourist to certain area's
  4. Went there last year, what sort of questions do you have.

    You are still meant to inform your admin side of life that you are going IAW the JSP, and I didn't find that there was any expensive areas for eating to keep tourists.

    Very friendly place, they can't do enough for you, but bear in mind it is a third world country so its not the most luxurious of places and typically everyone does things at a different pace to us (As does everyone in the Carribean).

    Any more questions put them in the forum, I'll try and answer them.
  5. Sorry it's a bit late on this and you may have already gone. If so, ignore it.
    Most places in Cuba for tourists are all-inclusive so you needn't worry about finding somewhere to eat. Varadero, Guardalavaca etc have excellent beaches and this is where most of the tourist hotels are. Try to get into Havana for a couple of days. Really eye-opening. Avoid the south, Santiago etc, because it's a bit of a wasteland.
    Currency. They've had another downer on the dollar and it's illegal to use them again. Take a mixture of Pounds and Euros. These are good for souvenirs, cigars etc plus tips. Most of the guys serving you will be on about a fiver a month so foreign currency is always welcome. Give the barman 5 euros a couple of times throughout the holidays (no coins, though). You might find the guy carrying your bags is a qualified doctors because they only earn 40 quid a month so carrying your bags, and getting tips, means they up their standard of living.
    Food will be fairly basic everywhere. You will be eating like a king compared with the locals. In Havana, go to the main square (where the Ernest Hemingway bar is). Great place to chill. Be careful of going up side streets in Havana. The locals are some of the friendliest in the world but there are some dangerous places. Avoid the "Come with me and I'll get you a box of Montecristos for a fiver" come ons.
    DON'T criticise Castro. To most, he is almost a God and, if you're overheard slagging off the regime, you might find yourself on the next available plane out of the place.
    Enjoy. It's a great country stuck in the 1950's and extremely poor. How the heck the locals still smile and dance when all their food is rationed (1 egg a week, 1kg rice a month etc) beats me but they still manage it, and have a great time doing it as well.
  6. If you are going to hire a car to get around, take a decent map, GPS & compass as road signs etc are almost non-existant! Any other questions PM me.
  7. I've just paid for my hols to Cuba in May, we are going all inclusive and just for once the kids are staying at home. Since this will be our (me and wife) first holiday abroad on our own can anyone suggest what to do in Cuba, top level shagging taken as read, obviously.

    Apols for thread necromacy.
  8. I'm off in 4 weeks time for a couple of weeks, but it's a fly/drive. I'd go mental stuck in one place. I'm driving from West to East, then getting an internal flight back to Havanna for the return flight home.
  9. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    Depends where you're staying. Its a big place. Name of resort / town?
  10. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    Check if they are still using old Russian Tupelov prop planes. Not recommended for nervous flyers. By west to east I assume you mean Havana to Santiago? If so, both have some serious old coastal forts and well preserved cannon from the days of Ye Pyrates.
  11. Yeah, via all sorts of places.
  12. Dur
    Sirenis Playa Turquesa

    Calle Guardalavaca | Playa Yuraguanal, Holguin, Cuba

    I hope its nice, wife just cleaned my account out to pay the balance :p
  13. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    Havana is well worth a couple of days. Theres some lovely restored old hotels - Hotel Raquel is a restored Jewish hotel and central. Visit the Camera Obscura in the main square and see if you can train it on the secret service HQ - blacked out windows on top of the radio station over the square. Theres little or no crime in Havana and walking the streets late at night is OK. The Tropicana is an expensive show but well worth it. We hung out in Monseratt Bar and avoided all the Hemingway Bars (full of ******* tourists). Well worth paying $10 to an unofficial guide (they will approach you) for a walking tour of old Havana.

    The scam - a guy will approach you all chatty. "Where you from" etc. Then pull out a pic of a baby. "We are not allowed to buy baby milk in Cuba. Could you go to that shop and buy some for my baby?" Birds fall for it. Its a scam. The milk is convertible currency in the slums.

    Theres sod all road signs out of Havana so take a compass. Doesn't matter if you get lost - its an island. Will post owt else I remember that is useful - but its been 4 years since I was there.
  14. Anyone know what Cuban weather is like in early July?
  15. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    Darn Sarf, so a plane trip from Holguin to Havana - you'll need to book at least a night in Havana if you do it. You cant do there and back in a day. You can get a day trip on a bus to Santiago de Cuba which takes in Castro's birthplace. Great beaches and resorts but not much to do outside of them, which doesn't matter since they are all inclusive resorts. Guardalavaca means Guard The Cow. A totally useless piece of info there.