Health & Safety Note: This adventure occurred long before the current COVID-19 pandemic. Please be aware of, and follow, all local safety and health guidelines if you choose to travel during this time.
Current regulations for American citizens traveling to Cuba can be found here.
Upon realizing our trip to Cuba was finally a reality, with flights and an apartment booked, I went into full research mode. I can’t help it, I like to plan. I like to know what there is to see, experience, eat, etc. in a new location.
I don’t necessarily need an to the hour planned out itinerary. In fact, that would actually drive me crazy. I do however like to go in with a list of things that are must do’s or a bit off the tourist beaten path, that you may not know about unless someone pointed them out to you ahead of time.
When researching a new location, the first thing I do, is go on Pinterest and do a search for the location I am going to. This will usually bring up a wealth of blog articles ranging from top ten lists, must see or must do lists and off the beaten path lists. I look at everything, and old school style in a notebook, I start jotting down things that look interesting to me so I can look into them further.
The other thing I do is go to the bookstore (yes, those still exist!) and go to the travel section. Being a visual person I much prefer a travel book with a lot of photos, versus a book that is all text. Descriptions are great, but I have saved myself great amounts of disappointment by searching for online photos of a location first. Many times what is talked about as this big fancy attraction, ends up being really small and run down, and not worth the hours trek out of the way to see it.