5 Best Beaches in Cuba
With the US government loosening restrictions on travel to Cuba, mass tourism is bound to dominate the country in no time. Many travelers are now flocking to Cuba to see and experience it before it gets overcrowded by tourists. There are lots to see in the country — colonial towns, old-world flair, salsa bars, and of course beautiful, empty beaches.
Yes, Cuba is packed with incredible beaches — all pristine, untouched and waiting to be discovered. As a self-acclaimed beach expert, I’ve rounded up five of my favorite beaches in Cuba, hope you like them as much as I do!
Located 65 km from Viñales (in the province of Pinar del Rio), this may as well be heaven. The beach is simply perfect; 3 kilometers of white sandy beach, mangroves right on the shore, and crystal clear water. It is the perfect place to relax in the sun, go snorkeling or diving at the coral reef and even eat freshly fished lobster. Plenty of fishermen approach tourists there to offer to catch and cook some lobster.
Playa Maria la Gorda
Also located in the province of Pinar del Rio, this beach is especially famous for its coral reef that attracts divers from all over the world. At only 14 meters under the surface, divers can find black coral formations with fishes such as barracudas and red snappers.
Not far from Baracoa (in the province of Guantanamo), this beach is a local favorite and it is becoming increasingly popular with tourists – yet it is still relatively quiet and peaceful. Playa Maguana may well be the quintessential tropical beach: a long stretch of thin, white sand, lined by palm trees and a coral reef which can be easily reached. The sea is clear and inviting. I certainly did not miss a dip there!
Perhaps the best beach in Southern Cuba, Playa Ancon is only 12 km from Trinidad. It can be reached by bus, by taxi (opt for a coco taxi if you are looking for something cheaper) or even by bike. It is a lovely sandy beach with clear waters. The only downside of Playa Ancon is the many sandflies that become particularly aggressive at sunset and sunrise, so it is better to carry insect repellent.
Bahia de Cochinos
Not just a beach, but an entire bay! Bahia de Cochinos, known to the world as Bay of the Pigs, in the province of Matanzas, is an incredible place for snorkelling and diving. The water is perfectly clear, and visibility at its best. The area doesn’t really have sandy beaches, but it mostly has what is known locally as diente de perro (jagged rocks). I certainly did not care: the water is so clear that I spent my day exploring the coral reef. Top spots include Playa Gir—n and, at about 8 km from it, Caleta Buena, which is a lovely cove which is perfect for snorkeling as it is perfectly protected from the currents.
Have you been to Cuba? What is your favorite beach there? Share with us in the comments field below!
Claudia Tavani is from Cagliari (Sardinia) and is obsessed with traveling. A former human rights lawyer and academic, after devoting her life to the protection of cultural identity, in November 2013 Claudia decided to give in to her biggest passion and started traveling around Latin America, and she has hardly stopped since. Blogging came as a natural consequence, for Claudia wanted to let her family and friends be updated with her adventures. She blogs at My Adventures Across the World.