Planning to explore Cuba at lightning speed? The Caribbean’s largest island and at 777 miles (1,250 km) long is only 100 miles shorter than the UK. And while 37,000 kilometres of roads sounds promising, the going is never easy, or fast. But there’s excitement and serendipity in exploring this enigmatic isle whichever transport you choose. While journey plans could go awry, there’ll always be a story to tell at the end of a trip around magical Cuba.
Cuba with your own wheels
Want to get further and deeper down the island? Hiring your own wheels gives you the freedom to travel when and where you want. Follow your own route, leave and arrive when you want, find hidden beaches, and truly get off the beaten track.
Classic car taxis & modern drives
Don’t fancy driving yourself? Hire a classic car and a driver to take you around the island. It’ll take the stress out of navigating Cuba’s road network yourself and comes with a big plus: most drivers are full of chat, top tips and fascinating anecdotes. Learn a huge amount about the country’s history, hear a current take on Cuba today, and laugh at the latest jokes. Hire a classic convertible or hard top with a driver, or book a modern vehicle with a driver, air-conditioning and seat belts, plan your journey, and enjoy the sights. Your Cuban driver will take care of parking, petrol and potholes! Our Chauffeur Program.
Taking the plane, bus, or train in Cuba
Love taking public transport? Domestic flights in Cuba are few, and to popular destinations such as Baracoa, Santiago de Cuba, and Holguín. The schedule may change so we do not recommend a domestic flight on the same day as your arrival or departure international flight.
Independent travelers criss-cross the country on bus service Víazul. Services run from capital Havana to region of Viñales, and from Havana east to distant Baracoa, calling in at provincial capitals along the way. Extensions to this service see buses running from Santa Clara to beach hotels on Cayo Santa María pulling in at colonial towns Remedios and Caibarién en route.
Want to make plans in advance? Víazul offers an online booking platform. Reservations must be made at least seven days in advance. Know your route? Paying for tickets in advance avoids worries about seating availability.
Can I take the train in Cuba? Cuban trains are getting a makeover. There are no high speed express trains, no luxury Orient Express-style glamour wagons, or any certainty of timetable information, but the service has improved in recent years due to significant investments. It remains a challenging way to see the island but if you want to travel cheaply and well off the beaten track and have no time restrictions, it’s a raw adventure.
Roaming Cuba by bike
More reliable than the train is your own set of wheels. Biking Cuba is an increasingly popular way to explore the island. Bring your own bicycle into the country or hire a bike in Havana. Traffic is light so biking is easy but focus is required to dodge potholes and stray animals. If slow travel, getting to know the locals, and heading off down remote roads seems like an ideal way to vacation, bicycling Cuba is a wonderful option. Most homestays have space to keep your bike locked up overnight.
A little less fit than you’d like? Cuba introduced electric bikes in 2018. Super fun day tours are available around Havana and longer two-week trips down to the Viñales Valley and across to the Bay of Pigs, and pretty colonial Trinidad are available, too. It’s a brilliant way to see the island and more options are opening up for touring all the time.
Campervans in Cuba?
Who doesn’t love an off-beat adventure in a motorhome with friends and family?
Cuba debuted campervans two years ago. A network of water and electricity across the island services the Fiat Ducato 3000 campers in 20 locations. There’s freedom, too, to pull up and camp overnight anywhere in Cuba making for truly wild exploration of the entire island. Explore options and prices here.