Tours

Cubatur, one of Cuba's state-run agencies, has very professional staff that can help you make arrangements for anything from a guided tour to a table at the Tropicana. The agency, or other similar service agencies, can be found in any of the main hotels where you will be staying. Havanatur and Cubanacán also have offices in many of Havana's top hotels and can arrange cultural and ecological tours as well as excursions to beaches. The staff does it all—from car rentals to plane tickets. Paradiso is a small company that offers cultural tours and guided excursions of all kinds.

Habana Tour Bus, operated by the Transtur bus company, is a modern double decker hop-on-hop-off type bus, like those you find in many of the world's top tourist cities. It offers three different routes and stops at all the major sites. Tickets cost CUC$5 per person and are valid all day long. A good starting point is the Parque Central, in front of the Hotel Inglaterra.

Cubanacán. This large company also owns and runs many of Cuba's hotels and is a great source for organizing accommodations, domestic travel, tours around the country, and excursions. They can also book tickets for some of Havana's top cabaret shows. Calle 41 No. 2213, e/Calles 22 y 24, Miramar, Havana, 11300. 7204–9605; www.viajescubanacan.cu.

Cubatur. A big travel and tourism agency, Cubatur can organize everything you need for your trip to or around Cuba. In Havana, they offer two main guided city tours, one concentrating on colonial Havana and the other on the more modern side of the city; there's also an additional one in an old classic car. Other tours include day-trip excursions to Viñales and Cayo Largo and an overnight trip to Santa Clara and Trinidad. Calle 23 esq. de L, Vedado, Havana, 10400. 7833–3569; www.cubatur.cu.

Havanatur. A variety of services are offered from car rentals to accommodations booking, themed tours around the entire island or tickets to the Tropicana. In Havana they offer one main city tour, which visits most of the major sights in the historic center. They also offer a separate Hemingway tour, as well as one to see the nighttime cannon ceremony at the Fortress of San Carlos Cabaña. In addition to this, a number of guided day trips are offered to Viñales, Varadero, and Cayo Largo. Their offices are located in many of the major city hotels including the Hotel Tryp Habana Libre, the Iberostar Parque Central, and the Meliá Habana. Calle 23 y M, 23 y P , Vedado, Havana, 10400. 7201–9874; www.havanatur.cu.

Infotur. The official National Tourist Office has branches all over the country, as well as a few places in Havana. This is a one-stop-shop tourism agency, where you can book lodging, transport, excursions, tours, and tickets for entertainment venues. It's best to speak to them directly for a full list of what they offer. The offices in Havana Vieja are better located, but the main office in Miramar is on Calle 28, e/3ra y 5ta Avenidas. Calle Obispo 524, e/Calles Bernaza y Villegas, La Habana Vieja, Havana, 10100. 7866–6333; www.infotur.cu.

Paradiso Turismo Cultural. This small company specializes in cultural tours and excursions of all kinds, including five main Havana tours, each with its own focus—aromas and flavors, rhythm and color, folklore and Santaria religion, Hemingway, or family. They also offer a variety of courses and workshops such as photography, painting, music, and dancing. Those who want to experience nightlife or live-music scenes, but would rather go with a group, should book with Paradiso, too. Ave. 5ta 8202, e/Calles 82 y 84, Miramar, Havana, 11500. 7214–0701; www.paradiso.cu.

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