Cuba is the Caribbean’s largest and most populous island – not least because it has been a socialist republic since the 1959 revolution, when Fidel Castro seized power. It is also a place of great natural beauty, with magnificent mountain ranges and fertile plains where sugar cane and tobacco grow. And it has some of the best beaches in the world.
A quarter of Cuba’s 11 million people live in and around Havana. Old Havana, with its square mile of colonial palaces, handsome plazas and charming cobbled alleys was, along with Mexico City and Lima, one of the three richest Spanish cities outside Spain. It has been designated by UNESCO as a city of world heritage.
Cuba has an easy-going, multi-racial population whose greatest enthusiasm is reserved for music. It is the home of the modern rumba, the mamba and the salsa.
The fact that it does not always deliver the fully-honed and polished version of modern-day tourism suits many of its visitors just fine.
CURRENCY: Cuban Convertible Peso’s (CCP’s)
TIME DIFFERENCE: GMT -5
VISA: A Cuban Tourist Visa is required and must be purchased in advance of travel from the Cuban Embassy.
VACCINATIONS: No compulsory vaccinations.
DEPARTURE TAX: 25 Cuban Convertible Peso's (CCP'S) per person payable on departure at the airport.
NOTE: Most credit cards are acceptable in Cuba; however it is NOT possible to use an MBNA VISA card, American Express or Diners cards. In addition, do NOT bring US dollar travellers cheques as they will not be accepted.
Cuban authorities are now asking passengers to present a copy of their medical insurance policy on arrival at immigration. The policy MUST ensure that cover is comprehensive and must cover medical evacuation by air ambulance.