Wow ! ok so Cuba was everything and more than what I expected. It is so true when they say to never judge a book by its cover or in this case from what others say about it.
I can’t begin to tell you how terrified I was to go to Cuba even though it had been on my bucket list. I got so ambushed by all the crazy things people would tell me from their experience that I already had this idea in my mind that it was actually nothing to what I actually saw…except one thing.
FOOD: let’s just say I survived off of ham and cheese sandwiches and candy I brought with me. However, on the very last day we did find 2 great restaurants they you can literally go to every day and stuff your face. will mention below.
Here are my tips and recommendations when you visit Cuba.
*remember this is my experience, my opinions. Your negative opinions about mine can click on the x above(won’t detail which side since I don’t know if you are using a PC or Mac…k bye)
- Yes, food is governed and spices aren’t on the shelves as they would be here, so you get what you can get.
Almost anywhere you can get ham and cheese Sandwiches but the best ones were from the Plaza Hotel and they are inexpensive and the best part is that there is WIFI !!! This is a big plus for anyone who need to stay in contact with the outside world.
We found two great restaurants during our last day there and for the best home cooked meals I would go to Zoilas down the street from the Plaza Hotel… I recommend the fried fish and the tostones.
Our favorite place was Lamparilla 361. it was like we were back home in the west village. Super duper aesthetically pleasing, drinks were fantastic, food was sooo good and the bill was decent. YOU CANNOT MISS GOING HERE !! you won’t get Cuba vibes but at this point my stomach was more important hehe.
2. Where to stay– Airbnb is your best bet to make sure accommodations for your sleeping arrangements are set. They are greatly priced and some even offer breakfast and call you cabs if needed from people they already have contact with. This is so helpful for safety and trust concerns. Government owned hotels are much more expensive and service isn’t the best as they are ran by the government… think DMV. lol
Our apartment during our stay was super clean, no weird bugs, and we had air conditioner, hot water, and 24/7 lights. I don’t know why I was so deceived by this one. lol I had the total opposite in my mind.
3. WIFI-if you have family back home like children and such like me then I recommend waking up early and heading to the phone company office to buy wifi cards that hold an hour each of internet. the most you are allowed to purchase per day per person is 3 so I would rack up for the day. Lines get really long during the day and they close early so you should take this one seriously. They are 2 dollars each so don’t let anyone up-sell you on the streets. If for some reason the calling company is closed , locals who are loitering are very helpful in directing you to someone who sells them on the low (slang for under the table).
The best signal is found at the parks. hotels aren’t the best. and those are the only places you will find connection. You cannot walk around and expect wifi. You must be stationed somewhere where there is a router or government antenna.
4. LOCALS ON THE STREET. there really isn’t anything bad to say about this because I truly understand the hustle. All the locals are soo pleasant, so educated and absolutely so well mannered. Cuba is a communist country so the people don’t have much access to the wants, rather than the needs that the government provides. Therefore, they go out and hustle the tourists…which I totally respect. There are soooo many of them outside trying to hustle you and trying to recommend places to eat because they get a percentage rate from the restaurant or places, if they end up taking you there. It’s your choice if you go but don’t be alarmed they don’t do it with ill intentions, they are helping you out by you helping them out make a little cash to bring home. If you say no thank you they will tell you to have a great day and even give the biggest genuine smile. I promise I have never met such kind educated humans in my life till I arrived In Cuba.
5. streets are super safe at night, crime is pretty non existent. we were walking around after 1am in the dark and all we saw were pleasant locals, tourists and bars. around the area.
6. ENJOY ALL THE DRINKS AND CIGARS YOU CAN !
7. Don’t forget to take all the photos you can, ride the vintage cars, and most importantly live through your own experience, thats the only way you can truly live the culture.
For a quick look at my time in Cuba, see my vlog on youtube. its short and sweet. will try to vlog more on my next trip.
Thank you again to my amazing clients who have become my dearest friends Glamdapper for including me in their adventures !