Destinations in Cuba

Matanzas (Varadero)

Matanzas, bathed by the waters of the bay of the same name and located 100 km east of the city of Havana and a little over 30 miles west of Varadero, this city has valuable tourist attractions and is a place worth visiting. The city, founded in 1693, is the capital of the eponymous province in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries it was the principal sugar export port and snuff and today still one of the main ports of the country.

Matanzas is also called the "City of Bridges" because crossing the mouths of the rivers San Juan and Yumurí and is bounded on the east by the river Canímar.

Also known as the Athens of Cuba, a city of poets and rivers, evoked his past to linguistic dualism, where the soul enraptured by her charms and abetted poetry merges with the confession of a beginning full of mourning and defiance is exacerbated.

Matanzas is also the birth place of the Cuban national dance "The Danzon" and of the "Danzonete"; it was and still is a prominent rumba dancing place, and the home town of numerous artists, composers, and intellectuals, who are responsible for the city's traditionally intense, thriving cultural life. At the head of the harbor, close to the downtown center, you'll find a couple of small stretches of beach, where there will almost always be a few locals swimming, fishing, and sunbathing.

Varadero

As Cuba's largest beach resort, it's no wonder that holidays to Varadero are a massive draw. Set on a 12 mile long peninsula with stunning white sandy beaches and safe crystal clear water, Varadero hotel rooms remain popular all year round thanks to the fine Caribbean weather. Although Varadero is the main beach resort in Cuba it is still not as commercialised as many other Caribbean locations.

The most popular Varadero hotels include the Iberostar Varadero and Paradisus Varadero.

Many of Varadero's hotels are set in extensive grounds that ensure there is a sense of seclusion and space for guests. The majority of Varadero's hotels are all-inclusive so they offer a variety of day and evening entertainment and include all meals and drinks - though you'd be missing out on the real Cuban experience if you spent all your time in the hotel.

At the end of the peninsula is a nature reserve named Punta Hicacos with secluded beaches, scuba diving sites and caves, including one with pre-Columbian cave paintings. The most famous building in the area is the Villa Xanadu that once belonged to the wealthy American Dupont family. Villa Xanadu is now famous as a French restaurant with beautiful views of the surrounding area, and well worth visiting on a Varadero holiday.

Golfers should visit the only 18 hole course in Cuba, hosted in Varadero and those wanting something a little different from their Varadero holiday should visit the aquarium, which is one of the many spots that allow swimming with dolphins in Cuba.

The Cuban capital Havana has a vast choice of evening entertainment with a range of restaurant and bar options, salsa bars, and cabaret shows. " Havana is approximately 2 hours from Varadero and makes a worthwhile day or evening excursion. If you would like assistance on your Varadero holiday, there are a variety of excursions available that can be booked via our local representative.