A holiday to Cuba with kids can suit all ages and inclinations: Grandparents will be able to regale the youngsters with stories from the history books; parents can enjoy the odd mojito on the patio of an atmospheric bar older kids can tackle a salsa class or learn to scuba dive and younger ones can relax in the homely atmosphere of a casa or paddle in the shallow waters of one of the many beaches.

With a lovely mix of activities on offer, here are our Top Ten ways to really make the most of your family holiday to Cuba.

1 – Travel in style

No trip to Cuba with kids would be complete without the obligatory classic car photo, so synonomous they are with the Havana street scene. Take an airport transfer in a gorgeous old American Chevy and arrive in style. Or enjoy an open top city tour in one – don’t forget to pose for a photo of you in the driver’s seat. With no air con or seat belts it is not for everyone but a huge amount of fun all the same.

Cuba with kids classic car ride

An airport transfer by classic car is a fabulous way to start a Cuba holiday with kids

2 – Aerial adrenaline

Take to the skies on a zip wire. With opportunities in Vinales, Las Terrazas and the Valle de los Ingenios outside Trinidad, this is a wonderful way to enjoy the stunning Cuban countryside whilst getting the adrenaline going. Toddlers can even go in tandem with the guides.

Cuba with kids - young boy preparing to go on zip wire

Zip-lining is fun for all ages, including the grown ups!

3 – Chill’in

Sit back and relax over a rum cocktail in one of the music bars of Plaza Vieja in Havana or on the steps outside the Casa de Musica in Trinidad. Both fab spots for kids being spacious, outdoors and pedestrianised. Also pepper your road trip with lunch stops in gorgeous colonial towns along the way. With food as a bribe, even the most disinterested of children will make it round an old plaza or a tour of grand neo classical buildings. Cienfuegos, Santa Clara and Remedios are ideal spots to break your journey between major sites.

Havana Playa Vieja - Cuba with kids top 10

Plaza Vieja, Havana, a great spot for the family to soak up the Cuban vibe

4 – Horses or bullocks…

Hop on a (well-behaved) horse or for younger children and non-riders how about a bullock cart ride through the lush plantation scenery around Vinales. If you’re holidaying in Cuba with kids, don’t be surprised to find yourself puffing on a local cigar (without the nicotine) whilst sipping on a mojito before 9.30 in the morning. Children will learn not only about tobacco production and the coffee process but also witness an extremely rural side to Cuban life. And possibly experience their first drop toilet…

Teanager riding a horse on a Cuba of kids holiday

Riding in Vinales

5 – Tasty nosh

Dine on some wonderful food in some really spectacular locations. Cuban food is much maligned but we find the casas by far the best places to enjoy really good home cooked food. Sample crab, lobster and prawns freshly caught off the Zapata Peninsula at one of the casas on the beach in Playa Larga. Or enjoy rooftop dining at Casa Milagrosa with the gorgeous buildings of Trinidad and the mountains of Topes de Collante as a backdrop.

The organic finca just outside Vinales may well provide you with your most memorable meal. When a hummingbird greets you instead of a maitre d’ you know you’re somewhere special. Plate after plate of food emerges from the kitchen (there is no menu) and you can gorge yourself on the terrace overlooking the neat rows of crops whilst the children run around the garden happily.

Reservations essential.

Lobster and chips on a Cuba with kids holiday

Simple lobster and chips on the beach… yum

6 – Do ‘nada’

Cuba with children can be relaxing, we promise. Take a ferry to a Robinson Crusoe island and do ABSOLUTELY NADA. Cayo Levisa. Powder white sand, unbearably clear aquamarine sea and a pace of life that is horizontal. Bliss!

Cuban beach with white sand and turquoise sea - Cuba with kids

Beach bliss…

7 – Feel the beat

Take a salsa class. Go on, no one back home will see you. Get the whole family whirling round the room and reenact a Strictly session. A huge amount of fun. Your children will be hugely proud/embarrassed/amused. [Read Helene’s Postcards from Cuba blog for more about the joys of latin rhythms].

Cuban dancers illustration - for Cuba with kids post

Book some family fun on the dance floor…

8 – Take a dip

Head to the mountains outside Trinidad and hike to a waterfall for an invigorating dip in a natural pool. Take a picnic and enjoy scenic views and lush greenery. El Nicho is a favourite and also the San Juan Falls in Las Terrazas.

Vinales waterfall - Pinar del Rio

Cool off in a natural pool after a gentle family hike to one of Cuba’s scenic waterfalls

9 – Boats and caves

If you decide to pick the Varadero region for a beach break, there are some great activities within about an hour’s drive. Our top two family favourites are the boat ride along the Canimar River, near Matanzas, and the stalactite-filled Bellamar Caves, the longest and deepest in Cuba.

Father and son boating on a Cuba with kids holiday

Canimar River boating trip

10 – All-inclusive

Spoil the kids and give them what they want – an all-inclusive resort on the beach with amazing pools and facilities. With buffets and entertainment galore, they’ll love you for it.

All-inclusive hotel treat on a Cuba with kids holiday

Melia Resort, a family favourite at Santa Maria

We found travelling to Cuba with kids allows you to enjoy a much slower pace of life, Cuban-style. With an international airport that only serves rum and beer you’ll need to just go with the flow here.

Hasta pronto (see you soon)!

Cuba with kids

You can include any of these top 10 ‘Cuba with kids’ activities in our example Cuba itineraries – see Highlights of Cuba and Cuba in Two Weeks.

Check out our Cuba family holidays section for more ideas and see our Places to Visit in Cuba page and When to go to Cuba. For up to date health advice on travel in Cuba, visit the NHS travel website.

For a detailed report from Stubborn Mule’s Helene Cooper, check out her Postcards from Cuba blog.

Liddy Pleasants, MD Stubborn Mule Travel
We’d love to hear about your holiday to Cuba with kids so do send us your reviews and opinions – info@stubbornmuletravel.com.