There are so many things to do in Trinidad Cuba for travelers!
Whether you prefer a leisurely day strolling through the old historic city streets, lounging at the beach, or setting out on a frisky hike, Trinidad has something for everyone.
One of the most beautiful colonial cities in Cuba, Trinidad has declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988 and is one of the most popular travel destinations in Cuba.
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Vlog From Trinidad!
What Is Special About Trinidad Cuba?
Trinidad is a “screenshot” of a Cuban town from the colonial era, as it stayed the same for centuries and fell off the modernization wagon when the sugar industry plummeted in Cuba!
Make sure to check out the old city’s cobblestone streets lined with colorful colonial architecture, as well as Plaza Mayor, Trinidad’s main square surrounded by quaint cafes and shops.
If you want to stay a few days, check out the top-rated casa particulares in Trinidad here!
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History buffs should also make sure to explore the Museo Romantico, which showcases artifacts from 19th-century Cuba!
Valle de Los Ingenios is another popular destination, offering visitors the chance to explore the remains of abandoned sugar plantations.
If you’re looking for things to do near Trinidad Cuba, the surrounding area is filled with natural beauty. Just outside of town, you’ll find Topes de Collantes National Park, a stunning nature reserve with hiking trails, waterfalls, and rivers.
Cuba Trinidad Map
Captivating Tours In Trinidad Cuba
If it is your first time traveling in Cuba, or to Trinidad in particular, you might consider joining an organized tour or two to make the most of your time in this historic city.
The cool thing about tours in Trinidad is that quite a few of them are FREE – and you can enjoy the knowledgeable guides taking you to the good places and telling all the fun stories only for a tip at the end (if you liked the tour)!
1. Join A FREE Walking Tour Of Old Trinidad
You will begin your guided walk through Trinidad’s past at Plazuela de Jigüe, where you will hear about the city’s captivating origin.
As you wander around Trinidad Old City, listen to fascinating stories and legends of this place.
Explore Desengaño Street as well as some of its oldest communities with our free walking tour – an ideal way to get a genuine glimpse into life in Trinidad!
By journeying through the quaint and seldom-seen areas of La Popa, Loma de Los Chivos, La Chanzoneta, and Mano del Negro, you will have a chance to immerse yourself in an authentic Cuban experience that is not found in any guidebooks.
As you explore these offbeat neighborhoods within the city limits known for their vibrant history, you will also discover renowned remnants of the past such as the old Santa Ana Church which only retains its doorway today.
Editors Top Tour Choice Trinidad:
2. Explore Topes De Collantes National Park
For this amazing top-rated tour to Topes de Collantes natural park, a 4×4 vehicle will collect you at 9 am from your casa in Trinidad.
You will first be taken to a beautiful lookout point, El Mirador, 1600 feet above sea level with breathtaking views of Valle de Los Ingenios, Trinidad, and the Caribbean Sea.
After learning about its history, you’ll head off towards one of Cuba’s most expansive preserved reserves – Topes de Collantes!
Here you will have an opportunity to get an impression of everyday life for those living within the community that exists here, an unforgettable experience!
You will visit a coffee plantation where three varieties of coffee beans are grown: arabica, robusta, and Liberian.
Afterward, head over to Vegas Grande for an frisky hiking route that will get you close to the local wildlife and plants of this region.
After trekking through nature trails full of splendor, you can cool off at the gorgeous freshwater waterfall before you dig into traditional Cuban dishes in a quaint restaurant, before you set off back to your casa after a long day!
3. Go Horseback Riding In The Parque El Cubano Natural Park
Right at 9 am, you’ll be picked up from your casa in Trinidad and hop aboard the bus to meet your horse for the day. You will get all the necessary equipment and instructions (so don’t worry) before you head off on horseback toward Parque El Cubano.
As you and your horse enter this stunning natural park of Cuba, get ready to discover some of its most beautiful plants and wildlife species like the Cuban emerald hummingbird or even the national bird -the Cuban trogon- that inhabits these areas.
Midways or so, you will pause at a breathtaking waterfall for an hour and a half of blissful rejuvenation in the natural pool beneath its cascading waters before we continue to a nearby eatery for lunch.
Finally, it’s time to bid farewell to your horse as you [[travel back]]to where this excursion began – Trinidad.
4. Walking Tour Of Santa Rosa Valley
Begin your journey outside the guide’s home, where you can relish the mesmerizing views of Santa Rosa Valley from his terrace. Next, set out on a hike to La Pastora and encounter ancient gate towers at Quinta de Santa Rosa.
Continue along the railway line to an old tile & brick factory situated among farmer residences with vast crops stretching as far as your eyes can see!
On this journey, you will explore some of the cattle-rearing farms and enjoy a revitalizing swim in one farmer’s pond.
As you make your way back to Trinidad, take in the breathtaking scenery of the Táyaba River before heading up La Pastora and Dos Cañones hills for an unparalleled view.
At its end awaits the grand entrance into colonial Trinidad – making it a tour you won’t soon forget!
5. Take A Classic Car To Playa Ancon
Experience the sensation of stepping into a vintage Hollywood movie as you are chauffeured to Playa Ancon beach in style in an iconic classic American car.
You’ll be picked up at your casa between eight and nine in the morning (return around 5 pm), for the around 15 minutes drive out from Trinidad to the famous Playa Ancon.
Then lower your shoulders and chill on the beach for up to eight hours of sand and tropical waves! Did you know that this region is also home to captivating shipwrecks and an abundance of vibrant coral reefs?
You might want to spend the day in proximity to one of the beach restaurants (there are not a lot of them). Grill Caribe, Restaurant Poseidon, Paladar Conde Becker, or Ranchon Ancon.
You can also easily hail a taxi in Trinidad, negotiate a price (around €10 one way), and head out to Playa Ancon cheaper, but in less style!
On Ancon Peninsula there are also several large hotels, or you can book a casa particular out here if you prefer to stay outside Trinidad town.
6. FREE Tour To La Vigia Hill At Sunset
You will start this walking tour on the main square of Trinidad next to the statue of Terpsichore outside Hotel Iberostar Heritage Grand Trinidad.
From here you will stroll past several important historic sites in the city before you embark on climbing the hill.
Walk through Carillo Square and other historic locations in the center, before the uphill journey to the top of La Vigía Hill.
On top, your efforts will be rewarded with picturesque views of the sun setting over beautiful Trinidad!
7. FREE Pub Crawl Of Trinidad
Even though Trinidad isn’t Havana, there’s still exciting nightlife to explore! Your free bar crawling evening begins at the Royal Prison with a visit to the Santa Ana factory.
In this renowned brewery, you will get to see the entire production process, which is sure to be fascinating.
After that, you continue crawling on to Las Ruinas de Segarte, and Casa de la Trova (trubadeur house), two central bars in Trinidad that both have interesting histories worth discovering!
Then the vibrant Palenque de Los Congos Reales for the best Afro-Cuban music before you move on to Casa de la Música (there is one in every Cuban town) to shake loose a little!
Your last stop for the night is La Canchánchara, super famous for its traditional cocktails, which you can sample as well!
Other Must-Visit Attractions In Trinidad Cuba!
If tours are not for you, you might still have got a few ideas for exploration on your own from the tour information above.
But there are lots more things to do in Trinidad, and many of them you can easily explore on your own!
8. Plaza Mayor
You obviously need to walk by the Plaza Mayor in Trinidad, the heart of the city, and an incredibly charming spot of historic importance.
The charming and quaint Plaza Mayor has sloping terrain, garden beds divided by paths and white wrought-iron fences.
Cobbled roads that encircle the area, decorative features including lamps posts made from ironwork along with statues of English greyhounds are adorning the plaza.
The buildings around Plaza Mayor date from the 18th and 19th centuries when trade in sugar from the Valley of the Sugar Mills (Valle de Los Ingenios) and the slave trade brought great wealth to the whole area.
Many buildings surrounding the plaza used to belong to the rich landowners in the city. To add to this picturesque setting are columns adorned with terra-cotta finials which gives the area a particular ambiance.
9. Sample The Cuban Food
Typical Cuban food ranges from bistec to seafood to the famous ropa vieja, pulled pork Cuban style – or just something simple like the Cuban Mixed Sandwich.
The national dish of Cuba, Ropa Vieja is a flavorful stew composed of shredded beef, tomato sauce, onions, and peppers. A cup of cold beer adds the perfect accompaniment to this hearty meal when served with yellow rice!
10. Visit La Boca Village and Playa
Ideal for water sports and scuba diving, La Boca Beach by the La Boca village offer a chill beach day on dark sand and rocky beaches.
This beach is aptly named “the mouth” due to it being where the river meets the Caribbean Sea in the little village of La Boca. Here you also find several casa particulares and restaurants, like El Ojo del Toro and Ocean Terrace.
During the summer months, this area tends to be crowded, but for the rest of the year, you’ll find ultimate relaxation here!
11. Stop By The Holy Trinity Church In Trinidad
Located nearby the Plaza Mayor and the Casa de la Musica lies The Holy Trinity Church. This building was built between 1817 and 1892, taking over an earlier church established in the 17th century.
When you step inside, you’ll be surrounded by a stunning combination of Victorian and Gothic architecture with a grand altar that is gracefully adorned.
At 11 am, the doors open for a few hours and reveal beautiful wooden carvings at the altar as well as two unique pulpit structures that you won’t find anywhere else. The grand structure stands tall in its majestic square and will leave visitors with plenty of lasting impressions.
12. Take A Boat Tour To Cayo Iguana
Just 15 nautical miles from the Ancon Peninsula lies Las Iguanas Key (Cayo Macho de Afuera), an oasis nestled in the brilliant blue waters of the Caribbean Sea.
A leisurely walk reveals a vibrant blend of wildlife, iguanas, and jutias sprinting through lush foliage, as well as hidden coves with tranquil spaces to take a dip. Come explore this small paradise for yourself!
Enjoy the stunning scenery of a voyage on an opulent catamaran, or explore vibrant and untouched coral reefs with amazing marine life.
To complete this heavenly journey, indulge in delicious marina rice and lobster dishes that will tantalize your taste buds!
TravelnetCuba has excursions to Cayo Iguana.
13. Have The Signature Drink At La Canchanchara
La Canchánchara, nestled in one of Trinidad’s oldest houses, is a tourist go-to and must be visited.
Named after its signature cocktail, a sweet concoction comprised of honey or molasses, lime juice, and fortified sugarcane eau-de-vie (or rum) served with whimsical straws made from real straw – the atmosphere here is truly special.
As Cuban music plays all day long in the cozy patio area surrounding this much-loved spot it may just feel like you’ve stumbled upon your own hidden gem!
14. Enjoy Casa De La Musica Live Music
If you’re looking for a truly unforgettable experience, take a few steps from Plaza Mayor to La Casa de la Música where vibrant salsa music comes alive each night.
Test your rhythm bones to the beats on top of the grand staircase, locals and tourists alike flock there in the evenings.
You can sit on the stairs and just enjoy the ambiance, or join in with those already ruling the dance floor!
15. Have Dinner At Los Conspiradores
Just on the side of the wide cobbled stone stairs up to Casa de la Musica in Trinidad, partly hidden by a huge tree bustling with flowers you find Los Conspiradores!
I had dinner here in December 2022, and it was amazing in all aspects. The service was great, the pasta was al dente, the wine superb, and the ambiance unsurpassed!
Make sure you get a table on the second floor (although the courtyard is stunning too), where you have a view of Plaza Mayor – and the live music from Casas de la Musica
16. Visit The National Museum And The Bell Tower
Overlooking the Plaza Mayor is the iconic yellow bell tower of Museo Nacional de la Lucha Contra Bandidos, a former convent of San Francisco de Asís.
Since 1986 it has been transformed into an exhibition filled with photographs, maps, and items that tell stories about resisting counterrevolutionary forces. The breathtaking view from its bell tower is simply not to be missed!
Take a walk downstairs to visit the museum exhibiting photographs, newspapers, maps, weapons, and other artifacts recounting the fight against counterrevolutionary bands. A souvenir shop is also conveniently located nearby for you to pick up some memorabilia.
17. Stop By Museo Municipal At Palacio Cantero
Initially, the Municipal Museum – also known as Cantero Palace – belonged to the Borrell family from 1827-1830 until it was bought by a German doctor named Justo Kanter or Dr. Justo Cantero.
Legends say that he acquired a vast sugar plantation after poisoning a slave trader and marrying his widow soon after. If you’re looking for a history lesson about Trinidad, this is the right place!
Displaying exhibitions since 1980, this museum shows stories of struggle and wealth through various documents, artworks, and artifacts from the age of slavery to its fight for independence in recent years.
The gallery gives you insights into the sugar industry’s prosperity, but also the struggles people faced during trying times.
The wealth of Kanter’s legacy is blatantly on display in the Neoclassic-style rooms that are divided into four parts. Together they illustrate the city’s history; of the community, of battles, and of the sugar trade.
18. Explore Sierra Del Escambray
From the provinces of Sancti Spíritus, Cienfuegos and Villa Clara rise the majestic Sierra de Escambray – or Macizo de Guamuhaya.
This mountain range is a natural reserve for Cuba’s fauna, boasting lush valleys filled with rivers and magnificent waterfalls, as well as tropical forests to explore through its winding trails. It truly offers an unparalleled experience!
Pico San Juan, otherwise known as La Cuca is around 1100 meters tall, and i you make it to the top here you get a majestic view of the historic Trinidad.
Among the Sierra de Escambray, you cannot miss El Nicho, an enchanting freshwater paradise where you can dip in waterfalls and natural pools with clear blue waters amidst lush vegetation!
19. Visit Valley Of The Sugar Mills.
Valle de Los Ingenios, or Valley of the Sugar Mills, is one of the most important and prosperous areas in Cuba at the height of the Sugar Era.
In 1988, UNESCO promptly designated the Valley a Heritage of Humanity. Within its confines lay 77 archaeological sites that led to the emergence and evolution of the Cuban sugar industry in the Spanish colonization period.
Eleven farmsteads can be found here; some are restorations while others have been reduced to ruin over the years.
There are three surviving sugar mills with machinery and tools in place at this old factory, along with remnants of one slave settlement in these rustic townships.
You can also see an old warehouse and two bell towers in this incredible historic collection from centuries ago.
20. Go Fishing At Zaza Lake
Lake Zaza is the largest man-made reservoir in Cuba, and also the host of periodic trout fishing tournaments.
It is developed on the course of the Zaza River, which flows from Sierra del Escambray to the Tunas Channel in the Caribbean Sea and is Cuba’s second-longest river after Rio Cauto.
Zaza Lake is famous for excellent trout fishing, and programs that promote the practice of this sport. One of the largest freshwater fish in the world, arapaima gigas, was introduced to these waters in 1980!
Trinidad Cuba Ultimate Travelers Guide
If you want to know more general information about Trinidad, you can read everything about the colonial city here.
Read on to get answers to a lot of practical information about Trinidad, and also answers to a variety of frequently asked questions from travelers planning a Trinidad Cuba holiday!
How Far Is Trinidad From Havana
Trinidad is situated on the southern coast of Cuba, around 195 miles southeast of Havana. The drive from Havana by taxi takes around four hours, and the Viazul bus around 7 hours ($21, book online).
Getting to Trinidad
You can take a bus from the Viazul bus terminal in Havana is located at the corner of Avenida de La Independencia and Calle 19 de Mayo close to the Plaza de la Revolucion for $21 (online booking, price in dollars).
If you are not flying into Havana or Varadero, Abel Santamaría Airport (SNU/MUSC) is the closest and most convenient international airport to Trinidad.
Located in Santa Clara, around 60 miles away from the heart of Trinidad this airport has an array of domestic and international flights.
A taxi collectivo from Havana to Trinidad, which is a taxi you share with other people, would be around 35-45 per person in December 2022. You can get help at your casa or hotel to book a taxi collectivo.
A taxi privado just for you from Havana to Trinidad will probably be around €150-200.
Also read: 14+ Amazing Things To Do In Vinales Valley Cuba 2023!
How Long Time Do You Need In Trinidad Cuba?
If you are a “fast traveler”, you can get the highlights of Trinidad Cuba in one day, on a day trip. However, to get to know the city a little bit, I recommend you set aside at least two days for this unique Cuban colonial gem of a city.
If you are anything like me and prefer slow travel, you can easily explore Trinidad and the surrounding areas for three to four days.
Then you will have time to lounge on the beach, explore the city’s museums, walk the Vigia Hill and enjoy the view, go horseback riding, and visit the Topes de Collantes Natural Park – to just mention a few fun and interesting things!
Where Should You Stay In Trinidad?
There are a few nice hotels in Trinidad if you prefer to spend your nights in the high-end of the specter.
The Iberostar Grand Hotel is located in the historic center of Trinidad and gets an average review of 4,5 on TripAdvisor. This hotel is close to most things, and around a 7-8 minute walk from Plaza Mayor.
Iberostar Grand has an ambiance of somewhat old-fashioned elegance and offers various amenities such as luxurious suites, gourmet cuisine, and modern services like wifi (but not for free).
There is also a myriad of casa particulares for rent in Trinidad, that you can book online before you get there, or just walk the streets and find one!
Trinidad Cuba Packing List
For Trinidad, you should pack similarly to how you pack for any Cuban destination, with emphasis on that it is a Caribbean island, super hot in the summer, and pleasantly hot in the winter months.
The particular thing to be aware of when packing for Cuba is that items that are hard to buy in Cuba are normal over-the-counter pharmacy products and sanitary products.
You should bring all cosmetics, toiletries, and medicine you normally or sometimes use for your holiday in Cuba. If you are unsure of what to pack, you can read all about packing for Cuba here.
How Much Does It Cost To Travel In Cuba?
If you travel by bus where possible, traveling in Cuba is quite cheap.
The second cheapest travel option is a taxi collectivo, which any casa host or hotel can help you book.
Or you can go all-in on the extravagant side, and book a private taxi to take you around, which is quite pricy for long-haul trips if you are alone.
Within city limits, if you want to try to make sense of the local “guagua”, city buses, that is super cheap! Only between 1-5 CUP one way, but be aware, there are long and painful queues, and the itineraries are unpredictable at best.
Are There Beaches In Trinidad Cuba?
Trinidad Cuba attractions also include some of the most stunning beaches in all of Cuba.
Among the best beaches near Trinidad, Cuba, is Playa Ancon with some of the best swimming and snorkeling spots nearby, while María Aguilar is perfect for a day of sunbathing.
How To Get A Visa For Cuba?
A tourist visa for Cuba is also often called a Cuban tourist card. Getting a visa for Cuba is a formality, you do not have to apply for a Cuban travel card, you simply buy one.
You can easily do this from the Cuban embassy in your country, from a travel agent, or from an online provider like Easy Tourist Card (that I use).
Some airlines also sell or provide a Cuban travel card, check with your chosen airline if that applies to you!
How To Get Online In Trinidad?
As in the rest of Cuba, there are public wifi zones where you can connect to the state internet provider in parks and some hotels.
In 2023, there are also a variety of casa particulares that offer wifi to their guests, often for a fee. Check with your casa particular or hotel if they have wifi on the premises!
You can buy an Etecsa scratch card in the Etecsas store in Trinidad, connect to wifi, and log in using the username and password on the card.
You can also buy a sim card (often referred to as a tourist sim card) in the Etecsa shop, which will allow you to connect to the 4G net of Cuba (which is scarce and slow, but present in city centers).
You can read all about the internet and wifi in Cuba here.
Is Trinidad Cuba Safe?
If you wonder whether Trinidad is safe, let me reassure you that the whole of Cuba is a very safe destination for tourists – and this includes Trinidad.
This is partly because punishments for crimes against tourists in Cuba are very strict, even for petty crimes.
Still, be normally vigilant, don’t flash your valuables, keep your bags and purses closed, and take a copy of your passport to bring around with you.
Violent crimes against tourists in Cuba are very rare.
What Are The Prices In Cuba?
There are also two prices for goods and services in Cuba, one for Cubans (adapted to their super low level of monthly salary which is around $300), and one for tourists which is a lot higher.
Shops in the touristy zones will typically have higher prices, and you can take on the challenge of haggling the prices down a bit – if you want to spend the time and energy!
Read more about the Cuban currency and money in Cuba before your trip.
What Is Special About Trinidad?
The most unique feature about Trinidad Cuba is that the town is like a “screenshot” of a Cuban colonial town frozen in history!
As it became a forgotten backwater after Cuba was priced out of the sugar trade over a century ago, the whole of the historic city of Trinidad has remained almost untouched.
Trinidad was implemented on the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the 80ies because of this, and today you can get a glimpse of colonial Cuba by visiting Trinidad.
Is Trinidad Cuba Worth Visiting?
Trinidad is one of the most beautiful historic towns not only in Cuba, but in all of the Caribbean, and its historic charm and beauty are just one of the reasons Trinidad is worth a visit.
What Is The Best Time To Visit Trinidad?
The high season in Cuba in general is December – January, as well as the summer months, but in the summer the weather in Cuba is unbearable hot and humid.
The best time to visit weather-wise is in the dry season before the rains sets in which will be November through April. Personally, I prefer March through May, as temperatures are nice, and there is not a lot of rain.
Late August through October also has wonderful temperatures, but expect afternoon showers, and the occasional tropical storm!
Can you go to Cuba in 2023?
Yes, you can visit Cuba in 2023, and that includes American citizens. For most travelers, all you need is a ticket, Cuban tourist card, lodging, and travel insurance.
For American citizens, you also need to buy the slightly more expensive pink tourist card, and refrain from staying in Governmental owned hotels, and shopping in Governmental stores.
If you are unsure about how to travel from the US to Cuba, you can read all about that here.
Wrap-Up Things To Do In Trinidad Cuba
I am sure you have got one extra little problem with your travel planning after reading this article – to prioritize!
But what a luxury problem, you can look forward to exploring this charming and special city in Cuban history, and the magnificent area that surrounds it with stunning beaches and beautiful national parks.
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