Trinidad was just what we needed after Havana. It is a Unesco world heritage site and is referred to as Cuba’s colonial jewel; a small town of churches, mansions, and pretty colonial buildings located in a valley between the sea and mountains. Today many of the houses have been restored as casa particulares (private hotels) and paladares (private restaurants). Many of the mansions are now museums.
How we got there: We took the Viazul bus from Havana. The bus terminal is located at the corner of Ave de La Independencia and Calle 19 de Mayo (near the Plaza de la Revolucion). See their website here. It was a comfortable 5 hr drive and although there are no toilets on board there were a couple of toilet stops.
Related: Why you HAVE to visit Havana, Cuba. And what to See and Do
Highlights of Trinidad
We stayed 5 days in Trinidad and spent most of it just relaxing, walking around, visiting the museums, or just reading on the deck of our casa (more on that later). The best museums in order: 1) Museo Nacional de la Lucha Contra Banditos – details the revolution and the motives behind it. Great views from the tower over the town and surrounding countryside. 2) Museo Romantico – a mansions owned by a rich family. Nice views from the windows overlooking the main square (Plaza Major) and interesting to see how rich families lived. 3) Museo Historico Municipal – another mansion. Not a very well laid out museum though and I would not recommend except for views from its tower.
Our highlight however was staying in our first casa particular. Hostal Dr. Suarez y Senora Addys is run by a wonderful couple, Jose (who is a local doctor) and his wife Addys. They were fantastically warm and friendly and we had interesting chats with them on Trinidad, Cuba, and Caribbean life in general. In addition to our room (complete with private bathroom, minibar, and AC) we had a deck overlooking the town where Addy would serve us breakfast and supper. We feel that staying in a casa is the absolute best way to get to know people and get insights on Cuba. I totally recommend this casa (Cost: 30 CUC night, 4 CUC breakfast, 10 CUC supper – lodging and food over 5 days came out to an average of 60 CUC a day for 2 people which is a good deal in Cuba).
Lissette’s Tripadvisor review of Hostal Dr. Suarez y Sra Addys:
Forget about staying anywhere else. This is it. From the moment you walk in you will be welcomed with big smiles and a great Mango drink. I wasn’t sure that I would like the concept of the casa. I thought a Cuban version of a B&B where your are forced to chat about cats and the weather and worse be fed runny eggs & stale bread. None of that here. Dr Suarez Y Sra Addys are there when you need them and they never impose. The food is great so don’t bother eating out! I really felt I was home. It’s also nice to know there’s a GP in the house.
There are many things to do around Trinidad including 1) going to the beach, 2) hiking in the nearby mountains which have waterfalls that you can bathe in 3) going to the nearby Valle de los ingenios (the location of the sugar mills that made Trinidad rich).
Most international travellers entering Cuba will fly into Havana’s Jose Marti Int’l Airport (airport code: HAV). Another popular entry point is Varadero (Juan Gualberto Gómez International Airport. Airport code: VRA)
Related: Cuba Travel Guide: Where to Go and What to Do (including the Best Beaches)
Related: Cienfuegos. And Reasons we love Cuba
Related: 12 Surprising Places to See (that you may never have heard of)
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Bryony Clapperton (travelsandmore)
I loved every second of reading this. I felt so nostalgic looking at your photos. I loved my time in Trinidad and in Cuba in general. Check out my Cuba posts if you ever get the time.
Thank you very much Bryony! Great to hear that you are a Cuba fan. I’ll make sure to check out your blog.
Thank you for posting. Great photos. Can you tell me the name and/or contact info for the casa particular you stayed at in Trinidad? The one pictured here? Thank you.
Here’s their site: http://www.hostaldrsuarezysraaddys.com/
You can also email Addys here: [email protected]
If you go please let them know that we said Hi! They’re great people.
Me again! Were you able to rent a car to travel from place to place in Cuba? Is there a reliable bus system? thanks!
Hi Brittany. I replied on the other post. But here is the info for the bus company: http://www.viazul.com/. They were very good, we were impressed.
It’s been a few years and I really don’t know about car rental. But things changing fast in Cuba. If you do drive, very little traffic (but watch out for cows and such…)
Wow, Trinidad looks so beautiful! I only made it to Havana and Varadero when I visited Cuba last year but with more time, would have loved to have seen Trinidad and Vinales. Lovely photos 🙂
Thank you very much Shikha. It’s a place that we also want to re-visit one day. The whole area around Trinidad is filled with history and geographical highlights.
Sadly we didn’t have enough time on our Cuba trip to get to Trinidad but it looks like we missed out! Lovely photos 🙂
The Travel Sisters
Enjoyed your post and pics! We visited Cuba but did not a chance to visit Trinidad. Would love to go back and see Trinidad and more of Cuba.
Hope you do! Trinidad a really sweet place. Thanks for taking the time to comment!
We are contemplating visiting Cuba in the near future, but Trinidad wasn’t on the radar until now. Thanks for the post! Maybe we should also try staying in a casa if we go.
Trinidad was our highlight in Cuba, it is totally worth the visit. If only we had felt a bit better (tummy problems) we would have been more active – lots to see in the neighboring area. And wherever you go in Cuba a casa is worth it – you don’t get great value in the official hotels and the food is bad. A casa is like a B&B, great for meeting people and the price is right (plus good, homemade food).
Have fun if you go!
We’re going there in a few weeks time, can’t wait!
Cuba’s great, one of our favorite places. You just have to prepare for money & internet issues, Cuba is a 3rd world backwater when it comes to that..
Some of your photos are really special. You make Cuba look really really nice.
Thanks Cipri! We really enjoyed Cuba and it is quite a photogenic place! I’d like to take credit for great photography but it was just a matter of clicking away…
Looks like such a beautiful town w/ lots of character & very laid back.
Funny about you and the touts (I call them hawkers), I tend to do what the Mexicans do out here, completely ignore them haha. I felt bad at first but now it’s 2nd nature, though I will sometimes throw a ¡Vivo/Vivimos Aqui! to the tour/timeshare hawkers.
Lovely shots of Cuba – U never made it to Trinidad so good to see some pics. Aren’t the Cuban people lovely…
Thanks Suzannne! I agree, the Cuban people are great!
I have been to Trinidad twice and love that town. Oh, and the beach is one of the nicest in Cuba. Thanks for sharing and bringing back some lovely memories.
Thank you for your comment! We’ll be back one day and will definitely check out the beach.
Looks beautiful, though the hiking and waterfalls would interest me the most!
Thanks Jen – I had a slight touch of the shits and I didn’t want to stray too far. But yes, definitely the waterfalls and the Valle de los ingenios are worth visiting and we would go there if ever back in Trinidad.
I absolutely love all the different colored pastel houses. In our neighborhood, it seems everyone has white or gray houses.