If you want real Cuban experience, then forget about hotels and resorts, stay with locals in one of many casas particulares across Cuba! Casa particular is house or apartment owned by Cubans and they rent out their extra rooms to travelers. We didn’t reserve any of our casas before, but as soon as you stay at one, then they know someone in the city where you go next and they can book it for you or you can find one by yourself when you get to the next city. Your choice!
There is many options, you can get room in very bad condition or in very good condition. Gotta admit some of our casas were great and then others weren’t so great. Some have fridge and tv in the room, most of them have private bathroom and some offer breakfast, lunch and dinner at casa which is amazing! About language barrier, yes most of them speak only Spanish, which is what happened in our case, but if you search on internet you can find some that speak English too.
Here are our casas and what we think about them!
Casa Mary in Havana
Consulado No. 263 e/ Animas y Virtudes, Centro Habana, La Habana
phone: (53) 7 860 0282 or 5 254 5531
Location of this casa is perfect. You have Paseo del Prado and Parque Central around the corner and just few minutes to old Havana. Every morning you can buy fresh fruits and vegetables just outside the house. Mary, her husband and the rest of the family are very nice, they understand a little bit of English, but it’s the best if you speak Spanish. They like to joke and they are going to help you with whatever you need.
They have 2 rooms, each of them with private bathroom, fridge and TV, plus they are building the 3rd room now.
Casa Mundo y Yusy in Viñales
Salvador Cisnero final No1 A Carretera al Cementerio, Vinales, Pinar del Rio
phone: (53) 525 09332 or (53) 582 03267 or (48) 684535
Vinales is a small town so nothing is far to walk. This casa is on a little hill and they have rooftop terrace where you can see nice sunrise and sunset while relaxing in rocking chair.
They can also organize all sorts of activities and trips for you. We went horseback riding only, but you have choice to go to Cayo Levisa, Cayo Jutia, caves, hiking, rock climbing…
They can also prepare breakfast or dinner for you which is absolutely delightful and huge portion.
Hostal Yuyo in Playa Larga
Playa Caleton, Cienaga de Zapata, Matanzas
phone: (53) 58 21 1780 or (53) 45 98 7465
This casa is located in Playa Larga, which is very relaxed little village. We loved this casa, rooms were newly renovated, with fridge and safe. Food was so delicious and huge portions, nice rooftop terrace too. Very close to the beach where they had live music some days. She can also organize taxi and guide for you to go bird watching or taxi to go snorkelling. Really the best choice in Playa Larga!
Hostal Delia & Nelson in Cienfuegos
Calle 41 #6001 B (Altos) e/ 60 y 62, Cienfuegos
phone: (53) 52 03 1321
They have one room with private bathroom and access to terrace. Owners Delia and Nelson are such a lovely couple. They also organize tours and taxi for you. We went to El Nicho waterfall and Guanaroca Lagoon to see flamingos. Delia is also amazing cook, you have to try her food, it’s bombastic! I would most certainly recommend this casa to anyone going to Cienfuegos!
Hostal El Chaplin – Pedro y Mireya in Trinidad
Vicente Zuyama No. 81 , e/ Ciro Redondo e Isidoro Armenteros, Trinidad
phone: (53) 53 41 9117 or (53) (41) 99 38 73
This casa was pretty old and in bad shape, but hosts were nice. Location was good too, but you have a lot of options in Trinidad so this wouldn’t be my first choice for sure. Rooms had only one window facing inside of the house and it smelled a bit moldy. So if you don’t find anything else then go for it, otherwise stay somewhere else.
* RENT A BIKE
Calle Maceo #409
phone: (53) 529 610 07
Very good bike rental if you want to bike to Playa Ancon or anyone else.
Hostal Dinorah in Santa Clara
Calle Central e/ 3ra y Danielito #74 Rpto Virginia, Santa Clara
phone: (042) 293 410
Dinorah was a great host, she met with us at bus station. Her casa is nice, but not that close to center of the city. Room was nice too with private bathroom, but she doesn’t offer food. It’s not too far from bus station.
Casa Mayra in Varadero
Avenida 1ra #4010 – Altos esq 41, Varadero
phone: (045) 611 924 or (53) 537 621 26
This casa was perfect, very nice room with private bathroom and fridge plus only one block away from the beach. You could see beach from the balcony. Mayra was very nice and helpful. Supermarket was just across the street and there is quite few restaurants near by. I would really recommend this casa in Varadero!
All our casas were nice and all our hosts spoke only Spanish, but you can get by even if you don’t speak it. Most of the rooms have fridges, they provide towels and linen for you. Some casas also offer food, portions are always ginormous and delicious. They usually organize transportation for you and casas in next city. We went to Cuba without reserving any of the casas, but I would recommend maybe to reserve at least first night so that you don’t struggle with finding casa, especially in Havana.
Prices for these casas are between 20 – 25 CUC!