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Sun, Sea, and Sand on Our Favorite Beaches in Cuba

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Cuba, the Caribbean’s largest and perhaps most charismatic island, is a sun-seeker’s paradise, bursting at the seams with vibrant culture and some of the most idyllic beaches you’ll ever set foot on. Indeed, the island is home to some of the most stunning beaches in the world. However, with over 300 to choose from, each with its own unique personality, picking the perfect sandy spot can be tricky—especially if you also need to factor in your choice of all-inclusive hotels.

From the province of Holguin to the northern coast and the Hicacos peninsula, here are our top picks. Pack your bags, bring your spirit of adventure and let Cuban beaches change you, one grain of sand at a time.

What part of Cuba has the best beaches? It’s hard not to say Varadero Beach!

Meilleurs resorts à VARADERO - Melia Internacional - best resorts in Varadero

Imagine a stretch of sugar-white sand so long it seems to merge with the horizon. Welcome to Varadero Beach, Cuba’s beach belle. Spanning a whopping 20 kilometers, it’s not just a beach; it’s a destination in its own right. The azure waters here don’t just compete with the world’s best – they set the standard.

Varadero is more than just a pretty face; it’s versatile too! With its numerous luxury all-inclusive resorts, Varadero dances to the beat of every traveler’s drum. It’s a fantastic launchpad for exploring the rest of Cuba, including the rhythmic streets of Havana.

Best beach vacation near Havana: Playa del Estes

Playa del Estes, affectionately known as Havana’s beach backyard, is a 10 km stretch where the city’s rhythm meets the sea’s tranquility. It might not be as postcard-perfect as Varadero, but its proximity to Havana and those dreamy Caribbean waters make it a star in its own right.

Santa Maria, the jewel of this beach collection, is where you can mingle with locals, especially when the weekend rolls around. Affordable beach lounging options and a $5 hop-on-hop-off bus from Havana make this an irresistible day trip for sun, sea, and sand.

Playa Ancon

Head south and discover Playa Ancon, a hidden gem near the charming colonial city of Trinidad. Here, the adventure goes beyond sunbathing – think snorkeling among black coral and exotic fish, or fishing and diving. While the temptation to stay beachside is real, consider basing yourself in Trinidad. With its vibrant culture and convenient beach bus service, Trinidad is where your Cuban story really comes to life.

Best beaches in the Cayos

Meilleurs tout-inclus à Cuba - Tryp CAYO COCO - Beach Resorts in Cuba

Ah, the Cayos – Cuba’s tranquil northern treasure trove on the northern coast. A 13 km paradise where all-inclusive luxury meets Mother Nature’s finest work. Ideal for those who love their beach time peppered with a side of serenity, the Cayos are where you can truly switch off and unwind. Just remember, beyond the resort life, the Cayos are more about nature’s embrace than cultural escapades.

The best beaches in Cayo Coco

Cayo Coco, for example, is often regarded as the best beach destination in Cuba. Located on an island in the Jardines del Rey archipelago off the north coast of central Cuba, it’s easily accessible thanks to an artificial road called the Pedraplén, which connects it to the mainland.

As far as Cuban beaches are concerned, Playa Pilar and Playa Prohibida in particular are always huge crowd-pleasers! The former is famed for its stunning dunes and calm, shallow waters perfect for swimming and snorkeling. Meanwhile, the latter offers a more secluded and tranquil experience, surrounded by lush mangroves and an abundance of wildlife

The best beaches in Cayo Largo

From idyllic white-sand beaches with crystal clear waters, to rocky shores lapped by turquoise waves, Cayo Largo has a beach for those that love activity and watersports, for those who prefer to relax and do absolutely nothing, or even a beach for those that want to go au naturel.

Playa Blanca, Playa Sirena and Playa Paraiso are among the most popular and best cuban beaches.

The best beaches in Cayo Guillermo

This particular caye is home to stunning Caribbean panoramas, especially in Playa El Paso, Punta Rasa and Playa Playuelas. The latter is flanked by the top LGBTQ+ resort in Cuba, Gran Muthu Rainbow Hotel.

This area offers pristine white sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a welcoming atmosphere, making it a perfect destination for relaxation and adventure. Whether you’re lounging on the soft sands, exploring the vibrant marine life through snorkeling in the coral reefs, or enjoying the lively nightlife, you’ll find endless opportunities to create unforgettable memories.

The best beaches in Cayo Santa Maria

Playa Perla Blanca, a quiet and picturesque gem, is a must-visit. Playa Las Caletas, Playa Canon, and Playa Cuatro Punta are other unbeatable options in Cayo Santa Maria. For a more active beach experience, Playa de las Gaviotas is perfect for water activities.

Why not book a catamaran excursion to see the beach from a different angle?

Beautiful beaches near Holguin: Guardalavaca

And then, there’s Guardalavaca in the province of Holguin. If it was good enough to impress Christopher Columbus, it’s certainly worth a visit! This 1500-meter stretch of beach near Holguin is a picturesque postcard come to life. With rolling hills, lush greenery, and a mix of tourists and locals, it’s a beach that truly reflects the heart of Cuba.

The comments and contributions expressed are assumed only by the author. The recommendations, intentions or opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Transat AT Inc. or its affiliates. See terms of use of the Air Transat website.

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