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Havana Beaches
May 5, 2017
The beach is my happy place. It is an endless reminder of the beauty of God and all that he created. The waves, the sand, the sound – I live for it. We were in Cuba for 7 days and we went to the beach four times! Havana itself sits on the coast, but doesn’t have a beach. However, there are two close by (less than 30 minutes), and Varadero (about 2 hours away).

Santa Maria Beach
This beach is less than 30 minutes from Havana. Round trip taxi for all four of us was $40 dollars. Often times the taxi driver that drops you off just waits until you are ready to leave, which is what our driver did. The beach did not disappoint. There were chairs and coconut drinks for purchase, and a beautiful backdrop I never get tired of.

When I planned the itinerary for Cuba, I did not have us visiting Varadero, which is considered the Cancun of Cuba. However, Charles really wanted to go after hearing about how nice it was, so we made it work with our schedule. We took a taxi from Trinidad to Varadero, instead of straight back to Havana. Almost as soon as we arrived in Varadero, the clear skies turned to RAIN. It rained while we have lunch, but stopped with enough time to enjoy the beach before heading to Havana. It was beautiful! It is a longer stretch then Santa Maria, so the entry we selected didn’t have chairs for sale, but it was still an enjoyable time. There were also tons of places to shop for cheap souvenirs, as Varadero is Cuba’s tourist capital!

  • Expect a "bare" beach and bring everything you will want with you! Santa Maria had chairs and one guy selling drinks. But it had no real food infrastructure aside from a smaller foot hut on the road that runs along the beach. Varadero had the food and tourist infrastructure, but depending on the beach entry no chairs/umbrellas, etc.
  • Transport: The cheapest way to get to both beaches is by Cuban bus. It is only a few dollars per person. The EASIEST way is to take a taxi. Santa Maria is a 30 minute drive, Varadero is 2 hours. Both are along the same coast,which is a simple and straightforward ride.
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