What you need to know about a day trip from Havana to Vinales
Vinales Valley is a town located just a few hours away from the Cuban capital, where you can appreciate a unique landscape. That is why in Bed and Breakfast in Cuba www.bandbcuba.com we will like to tell you what you need to know about a day trip from Havana to Vinales. If you like to get to know this place but don´t have the time to spend the night there this is an excellent opportunity. Keep reading and start planning your adventure.
Getting to know Vinales Valley
Havana is an excellent place to stay and from there getting to know others important towns of this island. From the Havana Vieja, you can go to other great places like Havana Rivera, riding the train to Yumuri Valley, Jibacoa, Las Terrazas, Soroa, Varadero and much more.
Vinales is a small town from the Pinar del Rio Province in Cuba. It is in the north center of the island. This location is the most popular in the region. The town center has a great charm but around you will see other sightseeing.
If you are staying in Havana, but you have limited time to go around the island. That is why a day trip is an excellent opportunity to get to know this special town: Vinales Valley. You can choose from a variety of tours, the ones with everything include or other with fewer things.
The full day trip includes activities and places you don´t want to miss in Vinales, like horseback riding tour, a typical Cuban lunch. And of course amazing views of the landscape. It has mountains that are not so tall and belong to the Guaniguanico´s Mountain Range, the Mogotes. Also there you will find caves.
Also in there, you can do hiking, an entire excursion travelers an official tour guide of the National Park Vinales. This valley is a world mecca for hiking and rock climbing, the best months to do that are from December to April. The park includes the whole Valley it has a World Heritage status given by UNESCO in 1999.
The Vinales Valley has various hills, is a spectacle you will like to see, maybe a day trip won´t be enough but is a great way to know this town. You will appreciate the hospitality of the people there if you decide to stay in Casas Particulares in Vinales.
Tobacco and Vinales
The mogotes go around this beautiful valley with red soil and majestic palms trees. This area is important because there is the most fertile land in the island, its soil is rich in mineral and nutrients.
That´s why there are the tobacco fields that produce the best cigars in the world. They still use the traditionalist agriculture techniques to produce tobacco. And cultivate other products like coffee, onions, sugarcane, and fruits.
The tobacco plant is cultivated between the months of November and February. And once is picked up they cultivate yucca, corn among other plants until October.
What you need to know about a day trip from Havana to Vinales
You can choose between private and public tours. It all depends on your budget or preferences. Going on a private tour will give you the opportunity to be away from the big tourism agency and the crowded of typical tourism.
We recommend you going to Vinales from Havana in private tours because you will be able to get to know the real Vinales, the tradition, culture, and nature of this valley. You can get in touch with the locals. And there will be no rush because the schedule is well prepared with enough time to know the most important icons of this town.
Features of a day tour to Vinales
This trip takes two and a half hours to get from Havana to Vinales, and the same to go back. So it´s 5 hours total in private transfer. Then you will have between seven and ten hours to enjoy the town, it all depends on the company you prefer.
The tours include specialized guides in Vinales and there are multilingual. So don´t worry if you don´t speak Spanish there will be a guide that can understand you. Also in the amount you pay are include the entrance to the place you will visit, and normally a lunch in a farm and a cocktail.
The whole day tour cost around 100 dollars, including transportation, can be more or less depending on the tour package you choose.
Without transportation the amount is 50 CUC, if you choose a private tour you will pay the transport depending on the number of people, 1 to 3 persons is 150 CUC both ways. If you will like to do the trip in one of the classic cars it cost 30 CUC extra. And the transportation from 4 to 7 persons cost 200 total.
Kids are welcome in this kind of trip, but you should know that it will be a long day, so they will walk and go around and can get tired. But they will love the views, the natural scenario and of course de horseback ride.
It is recommended to wear comfortable shoes, ones that are completely closed because you will walk and go around the natural soil. You should wear long and light pants, but if you think that you will feel hot, prefer the short ones. In general, the clothes you wear needs to be light. You can bring swimwear just in case. Don’t forget to bring a cap or a hat, a bottle of water and sunscreen.
Can US travelers book a trip to Vinales?
You can book a tour to Vinales from the USA, you just need to contact the tour and tell them what you want and where are you going to be in Cuba. But as a United State Citizen, you should keep in mind that the US Department of State says that currently “Tourist travel to Cuba remains prohibited. You must obtain a license from the Department of Treasury or your travel must fall into one of 12 categories of authorized travel”.
The 12 categories listed by the US Government are: “Family visits, Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations, Journalistic activity, Professional research and professional meetings, Educational activities, Religious activities, Public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions, Support for the Cuban people, Humanitarian projects, Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes, Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or informational materials and Certain export transactions that may be considered for authorization under existing Department of Commerce regulations and guidelines with respect to Cuba or engaged in by U.S”.
Places to visit on a day tour to Vinales
According to the tour you book the places you visit may vary, but these are the most common ones:
- Los Jazmines Hotel, a special scenery with the most famous view of the Vinales Valley, to the Sierra de los Organos mountain range
- A traditional tobacco farm. The best things is that the tours choose the ones that are not full of tourist, are small farms, run by families. So you can learn from the real farmers the how is the life in the tobacco fields. And the process of cultivation of the leaves and final manufacture of the cigar. You will see all the steps in the process. At the end, you can smoke an authentic Cuban cigar.
- A tobacco sorting place. This is where de ladies and only the ladies work classifying the leaves for size and quality.
- Cueva del Indio o Indian´s Cave, this is a must in Vinales. It is a ride in a boat inside the cave and the surroundings. You will be able to appreciate the flora and fauna of this area.
- Historical Center of Vinales.
- Botanical Garden.
- The lunch usually happens in a paladar or a family-run restaurant. Includes typical Cuban food like ropa vieja, rice and beans, grilled chicken. There you can enjoy a mojito.
- Horseback riding for an hour in the Silent Valley or the Prehistoric Valley.
- Mural de la Prehistoria is a Cliffside of 120 meters wide, painted very colorful. It is a replica of a prehistoric painting on the Mogote,
- Cimarrones Park, this is a Cuban museum.
- Visit a rum factory.
Don´t miss this experience
The trip can be a long day, but it will be an experience you do not want to miss. It worth the time, energy and money you invest there. The tour guide will tell you amazing facts about Cuban history and culture, especially stories different from the ones you will hear in Havana.
This is everything you need to know about a day trip from Havana to Vinales. If you have any question about this or where to stay in Havana and other cities in Cuba please Contact Us.