Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba | The Viking Abroad
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Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba

23 Aug Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba

Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba

Viñales is a great escape from the busy cities in Cuba such as Havana. The valley is perfect for horse riding and checking out the tobacco farms. Viñales is also great for biking to the very interesting Mural de PreHistoria. If you are staying in Cuba for just a week. I highly recommend visiting Viñales in two days at least.

How to get to Viñales

You don’t need to stress about booking a tour or anything. If you stay at a Casa Particular/Airbnb in Havana I guarantee you they can give you tips on how to get to Viñales and accommodation there.

The cheapest way to travel around in Cuba is with taxi colectivo. It is usually one of those classic cars and it can break down. But it is a part of the adventure. They will always find you a new driver if it happens. Cubans are very helpful and will never leave you stranded. The drive to Viñales is around 2 hours.

Where to stay

We booked our Casa Particular through our first Airbnb in Havana. They always know someone who knows someone who has another Casa Particular. Don’t worry about booking it well ahead. They have a bunch of them in Viñales, in the same street. You can just ask people in the street or even knock on their doors. They are very welcoming and friendly and happy to help. The fact that your previous Casa Particular are willing to help you get the next one booked is that they get a small percentage of the payment for that.

What to do 

Depending on when you arrive you can do a sunset horse riding through the tobacco farms, visit the caves or visit Mural De La Prehistoria. It is a short bike ride from central Viñales. Make sure you hire proper bikes! Read my story where we had to hitchhike a bike on a horse-farmer to get back to Viñales.  

Visiting Mural De La Prehistoria 

Mural De La Prehistoria is a massive public art painting which you can also see from the outside of the park. It costs 3 CUC to enter. You can also climb it.

Standing on top of Mural De La Prehistoria, Viñales, Cuba

You can probably tell I was terrified to stay on the spiky top. I don’t recommend it if you have slippery shoes or have vertigo. 

Tobacco farms

There are many tobacco farms you can visit. I got the chance to visit Finca Argoecologica just before we arrived in Viñales. I didn’t stay long, but it was enough to learn the drying process and the chance to buy good real and good quality Cuban cigars.







I booked my 4 hours horse riding through our Casa Particular. It was great to do it in the morning before the tourist crowds.


Starting to see the mogotes of Valle Valle del Silencio

You will most likely also get to visit a coffee farm to see their process and able to buy their products of teas and honey. Bring your CUCs!




Enjoy the views from both sides while you sit on the horse. No point looking down!



Make sure you book a trip where you get to see the Cigar rolling process. 







Make sure you get a drag!

This farmer dips it in local honey, it is amazing. 

The tobacco farmer will, of course, make you buy his cigars. I highly recommend buying it because it is very special, great taste and nothing like local fresh rolled Cuban cigars. Great for smoking or just as a souvenir. 

Visit Balcon Del Valle

Afterwards, I decided to walk around a little bit and went to Balcon Del Valle with a beautiful view of the mogotes and the sunset light from behind. You can eat and drink fresh juices there. I ended the night at Tres Jotas who has probably the best mojitos in town.

Have you been to Viñales or Cuba? Let me know what you did! 


Next step: How to plan a trip to Cuba 


Resources you should use in Cuba:

Lonely Planet Cuba (Travel Guide)

I don’t know what we would have done without the Lonely Planet Cuba book! It seriously was a life-saver. It answers all your questions about everything to prepare for your trip to Cuba. It tells you what to expect, what to see, eat, and do in the places you want to go and with a little description about each place.

Know you won’t have internet access everywhere in Cuba. Only at some specific places like parks etc and it is expensive and shit. You can’t just use google map or search for something on TripAdvisor. This book has done all the research for you. The book also has a detailed map of Havana, suburbs of Havana and also map of all of the other destinations. It also has contact details to recommended Casa Particulares! So make sure you get this book and buy it a few months before, so you can read through it and prepare yourself for the trip. This book will save you a lot of time and stress while you are in Cuba as well. You can get the book here: Lonely Planet Cuba (Travel Guide)


Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba Why You Have To Visit Viñales On Your Trip To Cuba


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  • Ambuj Saxena
    Posted at 10:52h, 15 August Reply

    Tobacco farms, prehistoric museum, trekking.. all sound such fun and immersive activities for a destination! I would love to take out 2 days as you have suggested to visit the Vinales and make it a point to do all the activities that you have talked about.

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:52h, 17 August Reply

      Hope you get to visit 😀 Thank you for stopping by 😀

  • Patricia
    Posted at 13:06h, 15 August Reply

    I’d so love to do this! My Spanish isn’t great, but my husband has enough of the language to get around usually. Hopefully, that would be enough to communicate. I’d love to take a sunset horseback ride to the tobacco farms and to try a bike ride (a proper one!). Exploring the caves and visiting Mural De La Prehistoria sound like great options, too!

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:48h, 17 August Reply

      I wouldn’t worry too much about the Spanish. Most of the Cubans who work with tourists know the basic 😀 Thank you for stopping by 😀

  • LaiAriel R. Samangka ( Thelittlelai: Beyond limits)
    Posted at 05:22h, 16 August Reply

    This is truly amazing! I haven’t had any chance to visit a tobacco farm and it is something that interest me after reading your blog post. I think this place has so much to offer, the public art painting is really stunning. They truly, had a brilliant idea where to display their beautiful painting. There are numerous breathtaking landscape as well that have captured my attention. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:46h, 17 August Reply

      I really hope you get to visit Vinales. Thank you for stopping by 😀

  • Candy
    Posted at 13:19h, 16 August Reply

    I went to Cuba earlier this year and am hoping to go back to visit Vinales. I love how you just have to wing it with transportation and accommodation, but like you said, Cubans are extremely helpful and caring so no worries at all:) The horseback riding looks like so much fun too!

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:44h, 17 August Reply

      True. They are so helpful. I want to go back too 🙂

  • Carmy @ carmyy.com
    Posted at 20:19h, 16 August Reply

    Okay my list for Cuba is just getting longer and longer! I’ve always wanted to see how cigars were rolled in person, it just seems like such as art in itself. how early did you go for your 4 hour horse ride?

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:43h, 17 August Reply

      I think we did it around 8 am or 9 am even. Cubans are not really up before that xD Unless they are a baker though 🙂

  • Sandy N Vyjay
    Posted at 20:55h, 16 August Reply

    Vinales is indeed a revelation. Comes as a refreshing change from the urban areas like Havana. I love the fact that you get to travel on one of those classic cars. The Mural De La Prehistoria is fascinating and of course the Cuban cigars look out of this world.

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 14:41h, 17 August Reply

      It is definitely a nice place to visit if you want to check out one more place in Cuba 🙂

  • Paige W
    Posted at 16:03h, 17 August Reply

    I’ve not heard of Viñales, but I’m dying to visit Cuba, so I’m glad I read this before making my way there. I would love to see the Mural de la Prehistoria. It’s so beautiful! I would also love to see how the cigars are made since that’s such an iconic part of Cuban culture.

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 16:06h, 17 August Reply

      I hope you get to visit Viñales, I’m sure you will love it 🙂

  • Amelie
    Posted at 09:50h, 20 August Reply

    We have not been to Cuba (yet) but your post advertises it perfectly ! I would especially love to visit one of those tobacco farms one day – it looks beautiful and so authentic. Thanks for this beautiful insight into Vinales 🙂

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 10:49h, 28 August Reply

      Thank you for stopping by 🙂 Hope you get to visit

  • Katherine
    Posted at 10:46h, 20 August Reply

    This looks awesome! So, full disclosure, I’m a bit of a baby when it comes to being in a taxi for a long amount of time. I get so self conscious about what I should talk about or if I’m being rude by not talking. Vinales seems worth the internal debate though 😉
    Just looking at the houses is awesome!

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 10:49h, 28 August Reply

      I know the feeling. Luckily you would share a taxi with others not only the driver 🙂

  • Chandrika
    Posted at 00:48h, 22 August Reply

    This looks like so much fun! Loving all the colours in the photos. And those fresh cigars sound must be really worth trying 🙂

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 10:48h, 28 August Reply

      Such a great place to visit 🙂 Thank you for stopping by my blog 🙂

  • Swati & Sam
    Posted at 06:16h, 29 August Reply

    Whenever some one says Cuba, I am reminded of vintage cars and colorful houses. The first couple of pictures have both. 🙂 Tobacco farms, horse riding, cigar rolling, it seems you had an amazing time. Never knew the fact that cigars were dipped in honey.

    • thevikingabroad
      Posted at 17:08h, 30 August Reply

      It is exactly how you imagine it to be 😀 the cigars in honey are delicious 😀

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