Going on an Havana to Vinales day trip is one of the many things that comes to your mind once you are staying in Havana, Cuba. Or maybe you are also considering taking a taxi from Havana to Vinales, in any case, the fact is that El Valle de Vinales is quite close to the Cuban capital and is actually recognized as one of the most attractive tourist destinations on the island.
Tthe Valley is a favorite place for those who enjoy nature and adventure. It is one of the most visited areas by tourists and locals, due to the natural beauty and conservation of the environment. Being ideal also for those seeking active rest in the westernmost province of the country: Pinar del Río.
OUR BEST HAVANA TO VINALES DAY TRIPS
WHY IS VINALES SO INTERESTING?
Viñales is a cultural monument that covers an area of 741 square kilometers. It has a length of approximately 11 kilometers and a width of 5. This valley was approved in 1999 as a National Park and, in December of that same year, the Vinales Valley was declared by UNESCO a World Heritage Site, in the category of Cultural Landscape.
It is characterized by being a geological complexity due to the predominance of limestone rocks, shales, and sandstones. And as an ideal complement, there are the karst zones, the “Mogotes”. These “Mogotes” are of a great diversity of forms, which reach to measure, in some cases, hundreds of meters high. They are only comparable with those existing in China and the Malay Peninsula.
In the Viñales area, 47 archaeological sites are known. Of these, 19 are linked to aboriginal communities of the pre-Hispanic era of the history of Cuba, where evidence of their funerary rites can be found, and 28 are related to maroon slaves of African origin.
WHERE IS VINALES LOCATED
This wonder of nature, is located in the center and north of the municipality of Viñales, province of Pinar del Rio, the westernmost area of Cuba, in the Sierra de “Los Órganos”, exactly in the mountainous group of the “Guaniguanico” mountain range. The area is located at 183 km away from Havana which takes approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes by car.
HOW TO GO ON A DAY TRIP FROM HAVANA TO VINALES?
HAVANA TO VINALES DAY TRIP BY BUS
Viazul is the only bus operator in the island and provides 2 services a day, departing from Havana at 9:00am and 2:30pm. The price for the bus tickets is $12 CUC per person, but you have to take into account the taxi service that you have to pay from your accommodation to the Bus Station in Havana and from the Bus Station in Vinales to your finale destination in the area. On top of this the trip last 4 hours. We strongly suggest to use this option if you are planning to do a vinales tour from havana with an Overnight in Vinales.
VINALES DAY TRIP FROM HAVANA BY TAXI
This is the most used method to do a Vinales day trip from Havana, most of the travelers just pick up a taxi at the door of their hotels and others prefer to do some research on the internet to find a good rated and trustfully company that could offer this option. The price for the taxi could be as low as $100 CUC as so high as $160 CUC, and this is because the most of taxis in Cuba are private and do not have any taximeter, so in case you are thinking to pick up one at the door of your hotel, be aware to always negotiate the price with the driver.
A middle point at $130 CUC is fair enough either for the driver as for the traveler. In Havana 60 Classic Cars Tours we have a fixed price of $150 CUC for a taxi service from Havana to Vinales, our driver would pick you up at any point of Havana at the requested time and drop you at your desired location in the city of Vinales, besides to this all our drivers are friendly and professionals, you can stop on the way for sight-seen or just for taking photos.
PRIVATE VINALES TOUR FROM HAVANA
In Havana 60 Classic Cars Tours we have a wide experience doing private Vinales day tours from Havana, that is the reason why we offer in our programs different circuits according to our client’s preferences. With funny, high-qualified tour guides and a fleet of Classic and Modern Cars in mind conditions, we aim to provide an unforgettable experience to all those who want to discover the beauties of this region of Cuba. That is the reason why we have won not once, but twice the TripAdvisor Certification of Excellence.
WHAT TO DO IN VINALES?
MURAL OF PREHISTORY
Every day there are countless visitors to observe this unique work of art that retains its splendor despite the years and inclement weather. Created in 1959 on the slopes of the rock of the mound Pita by the painter Leovigildo González Morillo, as well as a scientist and director of Cartography at the Academy of Sciences of Cuba. It was declared a Cultural Landscape of Humanity, in the Sierra de Los Órganos, in 1999 by UNESCO.
It represents one of the largest open-air paintings on the planet, measuring 120 meters high by 160 meters wide and reflects the evolution of the life of man and animals in this region of Cuba through different figures for a set of twelve colorful pieces, blue, red, green and yellow.
For the realization of the Mural of Prehistory, it was necessary first to completely clean the stone from the vegetal layer and create a drainage system to avoid the accumulation of water between the stones.
This design was painted with a brush. So once it corresponds to touch up it will be done in the same way and is a long and complex process that lasts 5 years.
The entrance costs 3 CUC, although it can be seen quite well from outside.
CAVE OF THE INDIAN
The Valley of Viñales is an area bored by lots of caves, the best prepared for your visit is undoubtedly the Indian’s Cave. It is next to the road from Viñales to San Cayetano about five and a half kilometers from the city of Viñales.
The visit begins by crossing the underground river, first on foot (200m), followed by another area that can only be traveled by boat on the San Vicente River.
Beside the many stalactites and stalagmites, there are paintings and remains of utensils and burials of pre-Columbian Cuban cultures that have been found there.
To speak of the Valley of Viñales would never be complete without mentioning the tobacco, which for that area, belonging to “Vuelta Abajo”, is designated as the best layer. Among the most significant indigenous constructions in the Valley is the so-called tobacco house.
Typical Cuban hut that stands out among so much vegetation, It has a professional cigar maker, which shows the different stages of tobacco cultivation the drying process and it explains how this procedure is carried out.
Tobacco is one of the most famous plantations in this area because there is a chemically perfect soil for the leaf and a climate very consistent with the results.
You can buy boxes of cigars there, the prices depend on the quantity, although they range are between $25 and $60 CUC. In this same place, you can buy honey, which like coffee are harvested in the area, as well as the famous rum Guayabita del Pinar, typical of this region of the country.
Amazing walk through an ancient cave where slaves used to hide and survive once they escaped from the plantations. El Palenque de Los Cimarrones use to turn into a disco every Saturday. Interesting in visiting this wonderful place is that we would have the opportunity of walking 140m through a “Mogote” and if we are lucky enough we are going to find the slave’s ancestors waiting for us at the other side with fire.
VIEWPOINT FROM HOTEL LOS JAZMINES
Located before the arrival to the town of Viñales, the viewpoint attracts everyone who visits the area. Through it, beautiful views can be seen. And best of all, it’s free.
WHERE TO STAY IN VINALES
The accommodation depends on your needs and budget. Depending on this you can choose either a “Casa Particular” (Hostal) or a Hotel. The “Casa Particulares” in Viñales are economic lodging, very chosen by many due to their excellent services, their prices, and kind hosts.
And despite its rudimentary facade, all of them are equipped with air-conditioning rooms and of course hot water bathrooms. But the most attractive are the gardens and terraces so that the tenant can fully enjoy the green and relaxing atmosphere of the Viñales Valley.
BEST LODGINGS IN VINALES FOR 2020
NIGHT LIFE IN VINALES
During the night Viñales is magical, the atmosphere is centered in music venues. The most important is the Plaza de Polo Montañes, another place is the Patio del Decimista.
There is also a growing number of private restaurants called Paladares where you can taste excellent meals, among the most prominent is El Olivo, La Colonial, La Casita del Medio, and El Pomodoro.