Seeing Havana is obviously a must while in Cuba. But the truly vibrant and vivacious Cuban capital is pretty intense and obviously there’s a lot more to Cuba than just Havana. Located at a reasonable distance (around a four-hour drive) from the capital is the Colonial town of Trinidad, offering laidback countryside vibes, beautiful white sand beaches and insanely turqoise seas. I also met some of the nicest, warmest and most hospitable people I’ve ever met in my entire life in this UNESCO World Heritage Listed town! Here’s a list of five things that you should definitely do whilst staying in this region.
Dance salsa under the stars
You know that word-association game where someone says a word and you have to say whatever pops into your head as fast as you can? If I were to play this game and someone would say Trinidad the first thing I’d think of is salsa.
Located just next to Plaza mayor (the town’s main square) is Casa de la Música, where both tourists and locals come to dance salsa alfresco under the stars and listen to live salsa music. Visiting this place was truly memorable, trying to master the fast-paced steps of the rhythmic salsa whilst admiring those a little more talented than myself, feeling the Caribbean breeze play with my hair and gazing up at the stars in the night sky. Travel tip: Sunday is the best night to visit this place.
Photo: Dancing salsa at a local birthday party we randomly got invited to in Trinidad, Cuba.
However, the best salsa experience I had in Trinidad and one of the undisputable highlights of the whole trip to Cuba was being invited by a local to come celebrate his birthday in his backyard. We had a lovely BBQ, drank mojitos, danced and listened to his talented friend sing – I can’t believe how hospitable these people were towards us!
Explore the streets of Colonial Trinidad
Trinidad is famous for its Colonial architecture, which is often described as the most beautiful and well-preserved Colonial architecture in Cuba. Walking around the cobblestone streets, admiring the colourful buildings and soaking up the relaxed atmosphere is a perfect way to spend an afternoon.
Photo: The UNESCO World Heritage listed Trinidad charms its visitors with colourful Colonial architecture.
Enjoy a beautiful sunset on the beach
I’ve heard people say all sunsets look the same. Personally, I couldn’t disagree more! I believe every single sunset is completely unique. However, there are some areas in the world, where you’ll have better odds of witnessing those really spectacular displays of colour. People (okay, okay I) might call these sunset-friendly destinations. Trinidad definitely classifies as one of these! Situated on the West side of the island of Cuba, this is an excellent spot to see the sun sink down into the Caribbean Sea.
Visit a cigar factory
I’m very much against the whole tobacco industry and am in no way promoting the consumption of cigarettes, cigars or any other tobacco products for that matter. However, having said that, an undisputable fact remains that together with tourism tobacco processing is Trinidad’s main industry. Naturally, tobacco has played an important part in this region’s history. So if you, despite the health hazards, happen to enjoy the occasional cigar then I believe this is definitely a fitting place to have one. In the town of Trinidad you’ll have no problem finding a place that sells cigars – from the fancier boutique-style shops to the more unofficial vendors selling from their own homes in the back alleys. Visiting a cigar factory gives you an exciting insight into how this product, that Cuba is world-famous for, is made.
Go chasing waterfalls horseback riding
Trinidad is more than cobblestone-clad streets and Colonial buildings. The region offers some beautiful natural landscapes and gorgeous small waterfalls. If you’re at all into horseback riding I highly recommend visiting the waterfalls by horse, it really gives you a feeling of being connected to the nature around you. The area has several different ranches that offer horseback-treks or hacks. You’ll most likely have the option of going for a swim, refreshing!
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