Planning Your Time
The 250-mile slice of the island that makes up Central Cuba has at least a week’s worth of things to do. You’ll find a good transportation network here in this densely populated part of the country. The region doesn’t lie so far from Havana that you can’t make a detour from the capital. Santa Clara, Sancti Spíritus, and Camagüey lie along the the Autopista/Carretera Nacional. Other destinations here are no more than 60 to 90 minutes off the main highway. History lives on in well-preserved Cienfuegos, Camagüey, and, especially, Trinidad. Any of the three warrants a couple of days. Remedios, Santa Clara, and Sancti Spíritus make worthwhile stops, too, particularly if you’re interested in Cuban history. The spectacular cayos (Coco, Guillermo, Santa María, Las Brujas) off the northern coast give long-established Varadero a run for its money as a beach destination. If you’re staying on any of the islands or on mainland Playa Santa Lucía, you’re likely here on a resort package, which keeps you there for your stay. All resorts and tour operators offer day trips to give you a taste of non-resort Cuba.