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Beaches

each in Cuba

Cuba is renowned for its spectacular beaches, which are kissed by the Atlantic Ocean on the north coast and the Caribbean Sea to the south. The country offers sun-seekers more than 300 beautifully clean natural beaches spread out along 588 km of its expansive 5,700 km coastline. Swimming and diving in the calm, clear waters can be enjoyed year-round thanks to a pleasant, subtropical climate. In fact, Cuba averages an enviable 330 days of sunshine a year.

Cuba's beaches are unique for the varied tones of their sand, from dazzling white at Varadero to glittering gold at Holguin’s Guardalavaca, to distinctive black at the remote Playa Duaba near Baracoa. Stunning cliffs and limestone rock formations frame the beaches along the higher parts of Cuba’s coastline, such as Playa Siboney near Santiago; while lush mangrove thickets line the lower-lying beaches, like Cayo Levisa in Pinar del Rio.

Varadero Beach is the country’s most famous, with 20 km of pristine white sand melting into the tranquil turquoise waters. Further east, famed author Ernest Hemingway was enchanted by the towering dunes of Playa Pilar, perched on Cayo Guillermo in the gorgeous Jardines del Rey archipelago. Just south of Trinidad you’ll find Playa Ancón, which is arguably the best beach on Cuba’s southern coast. It features sparkling white sands leading into glistening, clear Caribbean waters that are perfect for snorkeling.


Baracoa

Playa Maguana

Playa Maguana

Sink your feet into the shining white-gold sands of this beach, located 22 km from Baracoa. Protected by a coral reef, Playa Maguana is popular with local families and visitors alike. There’s a small village here, should you choose to spend the night.

Playa Nava

Baracoa Playa Nava

This remote beach is located off the beaten path, 6 km west of Playa Maguana. It’s a good bet if you prefer to sun in seclusion.

Playa Duaba

Baracoa Playa Duaba

The striking black sand makes this beach worth a stop. It also features a bust of War of Independence hero General Antonio Maceo.

Bahía de Baracoa

Bahía de Baracoa

To the west of town, a gray-sand beach wraps around the sparkling turquoise bay, beautifully framed by a mountain range.


Camagüey

Cayo Sabinal

Cayo Sabinal

Escape to this gorgeous, unspoiled coral key lined with mangroves, marshes and lagoons and watch clouds of butterflies flutter above the lush landscape. Be sure to spend an afternoon at Playa Los Pinos, a standout amid the key’s many beaches, located 22 km from the town of Nuevitas.

Playa Santa Lucía

Playa Santa Lucía

Bask in the sun and shimmering golden-white sand at this 21-km stretch of beach, bathed by warm turquoise waters. Its long coral reef is home to a surprising variety of marine life. Santa Lucia’s inland ecosystem is well preserved, allowing flocks of roseate flamingos to thrive here.


Cayo Largo

Cayo Iguana

Join the colourful iguanas basking in the sun on this peaceful key located just north of Cayo Largo.

Playa Tortuga

Sea turtles lay their eggs in the sand at this beach located northeast of Cayo Largo’s main resort area.

Playa Mal Tiempo

Savour the seclusion at this remote beach featuring plenty of nature-watching opportunities.

Playa Paraíso

Sip a Caribbean cocktail in the sand at this sunny southern beach that has a charming beachside bar.

Playa Sirena

One of Cuba's most beautiful beaches, Playa Sirena's shimmering stretch of white-sugar sand melts into the blue Caribbean waters. This picturesque enclave on the western side of the key is close to Cayo Largo’s all-inclusive hotels, and offers easy access to water activities like windsurfing and kayaking.


Cienfuegos

Playa Rancho Luna

Playa Rancho Luna

Located just 18 km south of Cienfuegos, this beach resort hosts the Faro Luna Diving Centre, two hotels and a local Delfinario, a dolphin park where you can swim alongside the gentle marine mammals.


Granma

Marea del Portillo Beach

Marea del Portillo Beach

This quiet beach is perched on a cove and framed by the stunning Sierra Maestra mountain range.


Havana

Jibacoa

Jibacoa

Snorkel among the colourful reef formations, gallop on horseback along the shoreline or bike through the nearby hills at this pristine beach located 45 km from Havana.

Santa Maria del Mar (Santa Maria Beach)

Santa Maria del Mar

This scenic beach is located within the Playa del Este stretch. Enjoy the soft, white sands and a leisurely lunch at the beachside Marazul Hotel.

Playa del Este

Playa del Este

Soak up the rays along this 15 km stretch of white-sand beaches, a mere 20 minutes from downtown Havana. Clear, aquamarine waters are ideal for underwater nature-watching.


Holguin

Playa Caletones

Enjoy fun in the sun with local families at this inviting beach west of Gibara.

Playa Blanca

Holguin Playa Blanca

Continue west of Playa Pesquero to stunning Playa Blanca. It is widely believed that Christopher Columbus landed near here in 1492. Don’t miss the Parque Nacional Monumento Bariay, featuring a large monument erected in 1992 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the famous explorer’s arrival.

Playa Pesquero

Holguin Playa Pesquero

Wriggle your toes in soft, golden sand, take a dip in the ocean, or catch some rays poolside at one of this beach’s four luxury resorts.

Playa Esmeralda

Just 5 km west of Guardalavaca lies sparkling Playa Esmeralda, a crescent-shaped beach surrounded by lagoons, lush greenery and the nearby Bahía Naranjo Nature Park.

Guardalavaca

This exquisite stretch of white sand is Cuba’s third most-popular tourist destination. It’s just an hour’s drive from the city of Holguín, and comprises three enclaves: the upscale Playa Pesquero, Playa Esmeralda, and Guardalavaca. Guardalavaca’s economic resort options and range of family-pleasing activities make it an ideal destination for those traveling with kids.


Jardines del Rey

Playa Flamingo

With its turquoise waters and shimmering white sand, this undeveloped Cayo Coco beach will feel like your own little secret. Your only encounter may be with the graceful pink birds this beach is named after.

Cayo Coco

Jardines Cayo Coco

Cuba’s fourth-largest island has nine beaches across a 22 km stretch of pristine white sand. The vegetation-rich cay is home to 150 different species of birds, including the ever-graceful flamingo.

Playa Pilar

It’s hard to imagine a more spectacular beach than this one, on the western shore of Cayo Guillermo. Towering dunes of the fine, soft sand are among the tallest in the Caribbean.

Cayo Guillermo

Connected to Cayo Coco by a causeway, Cayo Guillermo spans 13 square km, with 6 km of sun-kissed beaches. The sport fishing here is unrivalled anywhere in Cuba.

Cayo Sabinal

This is the southernmost and least ‘discovered’ island of the Jardines del Rey, situated just north of the Bay of Nuevitas.


Las Tunas

Playa La Herradura

Enjoy the peace and quiet at this golden-sand beach, perched on the eastern shore of Bahía de Chaparra, 30 km from Puerto Padre.

Covarrubias Beach

The white sand glistens along this 10-km stretch of shoreline on the north coast, 90 km from the city of Las Tunas. You’ll find six beaches here: Blanche, Bonita, Rocosa, Covarrubias, Real Covarrubias and Malagueta. The quiet enclave is less than a kilometer away from the coral formation that leads into the keys of nearby Jardines del Rey.


Peninsula de Zapata

Playa Larga

Playa Larga

This beach is also situated on the Bahia de Cochinos, north of Playa Girón. Its central location makes it an ideal base for eco-tours around the Zapata Peninsula.

Playa Girón

Playa Girón

Enjoy the quiet at this peaceful beach that’s an easy day trip from Varadero, located on the eastern side of the Bahia de Cochinos (Bay of Pigs). Its clear, sparkling waters attract avid snorkelers and scuba divers.


Pinar del Río

Cayo Jutías

Cross a short causeway to reach this 'undiscovered' beach, 65 km north of Viñales.

Cayo Levisa

Escape to this tiny island lined with coconut trees and mangroves. Sink your feet into the island’s smooth white sands, or venture into the warm waters to explore the pristine coral reefs.


Santa Lucia

Playa Los Cocos

This beautiful beach at the western tip of Playa Santa Lucía offers views of the Colón lighthouse on Cayo Sabinal (just across the Canal de la Boca), and flocks of pink flamingoes in the lagoon behind the beach.

Playa Santa Lucía

Enjoy the sun and shimmering white sand at this 21-km stretch of pristine beach that is well-served by a variety of good hotels and resorts. Santa Lucía’s ecosystem is carefully preserved, allowing flocks of pretty pink flamingoes to thrive here.

Cayo Sabinal

Cayo Sabinal

Escape to this gorgeous, unspoiled coral key lined with mangroves, marshes and lagoons and watch clouds of butterflies flutter above the lush landscape. Be sure to spend an afternoon at Playa Los Pinos, a standout amid the key’s many beaches, located 22 km from the town of Nuevitas.


Santiago de Cuba

Playa Cazonal

Santiago Playa Cazonal

This popular beach features warm, clear waters ideal for swimming, with plenty of trees to offer shade.

Playa Caletón Blanco

Santiago Playa Caletón Blanco

Gaze at the majestic Sierra Maestra mountain range as you stroll barefoot through the smooth white sands.

Playa Siboney

Playa Siboney

A lovely stretch of sand and surf at the foot of stunning cliffs, Playa Siboney is a great spot to see local families at play.


Trinidad

Maria Anguilar

Maria AnguilarThe warm waters off this beach, on the Ancón Peninsula, are perfect for swimming and snorkeling.

La Boca

La BocaMingle with the locals at this rocky beach off the beaten path. It also boasts striking views of the Escambray Mountains.

Ancón Beach

Bask in the shade of the pines lining this picturesque beach located just 13 km from Trinidad. It is widely recognized as the best beach on Cuba’s south coast, thanks to its dazzling mountain views and fine, white sand.


Varadero

Playa Mayor

Playa Mayor

Arguably the most well developed beach in Cuba, this dazzling stretch offers plenty of hotel and resort options for every budget.

Karabelas

Karabelas

Get off the beaten path and visit this remote beach located on the east side of the expansive Peninsula.

Playa Larga

Playa Larga

This beach is also situated on the Bahia de Cochinos, north of Playa Girón. Its central location makes it an ideal base for eco-tours around the Zapata Peninsula.

Playa Girón

Playa Girón

Enjoy the quiet at this peaceful beach that’s an easy day trip from Varadero, located on the eastern side of the Bahia de Cochinos (Bay of Pigs). Its clear, sparkling waters attract avid snorkelers and scuba divers.

Varadero Beach

Varadero Beach

Sink your feet into the immaculate white sand along the 21-kilometre stretch of Cuba’s trademark beach. The serene waters are always inviting, with an average year-round water temperature of 24ºC-26ºC.


Villa Clara

Playa Las Salinas

Playa Las Salinas

This unspoiled beach is located next to Villa Las Bruias.

Perla Blanca

Perla Blanca

Bask in the rays on this sunny beach situated on the tip of Cayo Santa María.

Playa Periquillo, Cayo Santa María

Playa Periquillo

Follow the causeway across the lagoon to get to this warm and inviting beach. Divers can explore the colourful coral reefs and shipwrecks dotting the shallow waters.