Cuba is definitely one of the destinations most visited by all those tourists who love to bask in the sun lying along the sandy beaches enjoying the beauty of the sea with the colors from “postcard”. But many may not know that the four islands that form the Republic of Cuba have more than 4,200 islands with many beaches, many of which still lack of tourist facilities.
In Cuba, in fact, there are over 300 beaches, most made of very fine sand, which covers more than 600 kilometers of the surface, a joy for tourists who annually visit these beautiful places. For all those who want to design a true “escape from the cold winter” and continue to dream of the warm days of summer, a holiday in Cuba is just what makes them best!
Now let’s see 10 beaches definitely worth visiting once arrived on the island. Ten dream location, some of the most well known, others less famous, but all unforgettable for the variety of their colors, the fine white sand, the clear sea and the vegetation that, in some cases, extends to the edges of the sea.
In the archipelago of Los Canarreos, Batamano between the Gulf and the Caribbean Sea, between about 350 islets is the small, narrow barrier island of Cayo Largo, surely one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. The 27 km of fabulous beaches of Cayo Largo promptly fill the brochures of tour operators around the world, a very steady stream of tourists who leads this small island definitely at the top of the charts of the most popular Caribbean places in the world.
The island has the distinction of being crossed by a road that allows easy access to all the most beautiful beaches. Among the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean certainly it deserves a about Playa Paraiso Notes that despite its location, yet offers visitors small corners of peace and serenity. It is useful to know that Cayo Largo was the first destination of Cuba open to the international holiday tourism and even now, with an airport and continuous links with the mother island, is popular with an elite tourism thanks to the presence of the Navy Puertosol of where they land numerous yachts and sailing boats.
When in 1942 Christopher Columbus put his eyes on the Holguin coast, described it as “the most beautiful place where you can lay eyes” … and had not entirely wrong: the northern province of Cuba, where is Guardalavaca , it is definitely a place to recommend strongly to see and, not surprisingly, is the third most visited destination in the country.
At about six centuries later, the emotion that welcomes tourists who visit for the first time is the same: a sight to see with bated breath about three kilometers of fine white sand that is reflected in a crystal clear turquoise sea . The waters of this beautiful beach, calm and temperate, are ideal for snorkelling: the reef is about 300 meters from the shore and is rich in flora and fauna in various colors. Thanks to the constant wind, Guardalavaca is also much loved by sailors who allow pleasantly transported in small beaches and equally interesting to visit nearby bays.
Backed by a beautiful park full of vegetation, advice from tourists also visit the largest Necropolis Aboriginal Indians of Cuba, definitely a place not to be missed.
Pilar Beach – Cayo Guillermo
Photo: Thorsten Rinne
What about the islet frequented by Ernest Hemingway when staying in Cuba? Simply fantastic!
Pilar Beach, known for its sandy dunes among the highest in the Caribbean, owes its name to the boat that the writer was usually leave the beach when he decided to visit the island.
Placed at the end of a spit of land, this beach, which is fortunate to have an ever fresh sand even after many hours of sunshine, it has a sandy bottom ideal for swimming peacefully accompanied by colorful fish. Pilar Beach is one of the most popular beaches of Cayo Guillermo, the small coral island of Cayo Coco, Ciego de Avila reached by a causeway about 17 kilometers. This archipelago offers about 22 kilometers of white sand like talcum powder, surrounded by dense vegetation has become, over the years, the natural habitat of beautiful pink flamingos, herons and pelicans.
Playa Las Coloradas
Photo: data smog
Exceeded Santiago de Cuba, not far from Niquero, near a mangrove forest is Playa Las Coloradas. This magnificent beach is located in an inaccessible area and is linked to real Cuban history: right on its sandy, December 2, 1946 Granma landed, the historic blue and white boat they were traveling from Mexico, many fighters including Fidel Castro and Che Guevara, beginning the season of the guerrillas to overthrow the Batista regime.
Wonderful beaches, I recommend you visit the Museum Las Coloradas, part of the Parque Nacional Desembarco del Granma, a UNESCO heritage site with its 27,000 hectares of forests, cliffs and coral reefs. For this reason the beach is only accessible by one of the many resorts that are located along its coastline or after purchasing a day pass that allows you bathing.
Playa Las Coloradas gets its name from the color of the lagoons and lush vegetation. This magnificent beach, as I mentioned earlier, has behind him a truly unique ecosystem formed by huge cactus, avocado, parrots of many colors, partridges and hard to find shells in other parts of the Caribbean. This is the part of Cuba most untouched and exciting, far from the bright lights of Varadero, but perhaps undoubtedly the most beautiful … Here the Cuban government has, in fact, chosen the eco-tourism route giving the opportunity for visitors carry out activities such as hiking, bird watching and also take part in conservation programs; in short, a real nature holiday!
Maria La Gorda
Legend has it that Mary was a young Venezuelan kidnapped by pirates and later abandoned on an island. Later, the woman opened a local on a beach where she used to cook delicious meals for all visitors … it is said was not exactly skinny! Here is revealed the name of this magnificent beach: Maria La Gorda, the fat to be precise!
Located at the western end of Cuba on the Guanahacabibes Peninsula, it is located right on the coast bordering a nature reserve kingdom of deer iguanas and lizards. The more than one hundred thousand hectares of the reserve have been transformed by UNESCO in a protected park, where there are no hotel facilities and accessed only after obtaining a permit from La Bajada Ecological Center.
Maria La Gorda is undoubtedly a paradise for divers. Near the beach there are, in fact, about 50 dive sites suitable to admire the largest colony of black coral island, a truly exciting show! In order to enjoy these wonders placed in the depths of the abyss, you can stay in the only hotel located directly on the coast, the Hotel Maria La Gorda, with its rooms facing directly on the beach, guarantees an excellent starting point for all lovers of diving.
Playa Maguana – Baracoa
Photo: Francesco Chillari
At about 20 km from the city of Baracoa, the oldest city of Cuba, in Guantanamo province is the little tourist Playa Maguana. This beach is characterized by dark sand, a beautiful coral reef and the presence of the mountains down to the sea. Also for this reason, the vegetation in Playa Maguana seems to reign over all creating a very naturalistic atmosphere: surrounded by magnificent palm trees, it is the typical Caribbean beach!
To reach the beach you can book a taxi or wait for the means that run frequently to carry all those Cubans who work in the various tourist facilities around the area. The road is panoramic: passes over a long bridge that spans the largest river of Cuba (the Toa River) and offers the possibility to admire the famous chocolate factory founded by Che Guevara. On the beach there is only one small hotel consists of about 20 wooden huts in perfect Robinson Crusoe style, ideal for a holiday of privacy and relaxation.
Playa Rancho Luna
Playa Rancho Luna Cienfuegos beach, characterized by fine white sand with palms and caleta grape. Located in a dozen kilometers from the city, this beach is served with all the amenities a demanding tourist can require: restaurants, bars, bathing facilities equipped and even offers the opportunity to meet fishermen who show pride the day fishing loot ( lobsters, squid, etc.).
One special feature: a short distance from Playa Rancho Luna, near San Antón (10 km east of Cienfuegos), you reach the Botanical Garden La Soledad. Within this park you will find in addition to a well equipped library, also a huge plantation of cactus and palm trees, and all the major varieties of mariposas, the Cuban national flower.
Playas de l’Este
Photo: Anuchy Cid
Playa de l’Este is actually not a single beach, but a group of beaches that follow each other just outside Havana. This continuous stretch of white sand is very fine, in fact, only 20 kilometers from the city center and about 40 kilometers from the international airport. Getting to Playa de l’Este is very simple: from Havana follow Monumental Street and then turn left to the narrow Via Blanca, from here you get to visit all the beaches in succession.
In fact, the Spanish word that best characterizes this eastern area of Havana is, in fact, Habana del Heste and includes within it the areas of Alamar, Boca Ciega, Tarara, Santa Maria del Mar and Guanabo. Most of the hotels are almost all concentrated in Santa Maria del Mar and offer to those staying you the chance to enjoy a great beach and a sea of glass while being not too far from Havana, the city must visit for its important history.
Photo: Didier Baertschiger
Long and narrow in its extension of more than three kilometers of coral beach, Cayo Levisa is a virgin island of the archipelago of Los Colorados which is only four kilometers away from Palma Rubia, on the coast of Cuba. The area around all ‘island, thanks to the urgent request of the Ministry of Tourism and the Cuban Fisheries, has become recently a Natural Park, a protected area for the presence of the manatee, the Cuban name of Manatee, a mammal today endangered.
Since it is a pristine place, this island is particularly suitable for those who want a quiet vacation surrounded by beautiful nature. Cayo Levisa is considered, also, heaven for divers because it has several dive sites that allow you to explore unique coral formations and admire the many colorful fish. The marine landscape of this beautiful island, together with the neighboring Cayo Paraiso and Cayo Arena, is characterized by huge sponges and foltissimi black coral branches.
Exciting and unforgettable are diving along the walls more than 50 meters deep where you can meet beautiful specimens of Barracuda and night excursions that are sure to give wonderful emotions. The island has a unique eco-resort consisting of just 45 bungalows built on the beach: the Explora Cafe.
Here, finally, one of the best known and most visited tourist resorts and beaches of the Caribbean. The Varadero beach, also called Playa Azul (Blue Beach), is located in the Province of Mazantas and is one of the largest and most visited beaches in Cuba. When they speak of Varadero, the Cuban people always say: “No es Cuba, son los Estados Unidos! ” ( “It is not Cuba, it is the United States!”), And this should make you understand the purely touristic character of the place.
Varadero, though, is much more: there are not only luxury 5-star hotels, golf courses, water sports, craft markets, discos where you can dance salsa and wherever Merengues, the double-decker bus or the train with which you can visit the city, the catamarans that take you to go hiking in virgin islands, there is above the second reef in the world by extension and is truly unique! Those who visit Varadero also has the opportunity to immerse themselves completely in the rhythm and in the traditions of the Cubans who, with their joy, they are able to involve everyone with their frantic pace.
As you have seen, Cuba and its smaller islands can offer a wide range of opportunities to suit every type of holiday you think of organizing: you can choose to immerse yourself in the chaos of Caribbean nightlife choosing the best known Cayo Largo, Cayo Guillermo and Varadero or indulge in a relaxing trip in the pristine nature preferring to Playa Las Coloradas, Maria la Gorda and Cayo Levisa. In both cases, do not hesitate too long, the months from December to April are undoubtedly the best in order to enjoy these wonders!