Top ChoiceCafe in Varadero


The best coffee in Cuba outside Havana is ignored by most of Varadero's tourists simply because they don't know about it. The reason: this open-all-hours cafe-bakery is in Santa Marta, the small settlement at the...

Top ChoiceBar in Matanzas

Galería-Bar Artys

Matanzas has recently made a giant leap into a new artistic domain, thanks largely to places like this smart cafe-cum-art-collective on riverside Calle Narváez that plies tacos, pizzas and small tapas, but is...

Craft Beer in Varadero

Factoria Varadero 43 Cervecería

Specializing in large, super-chilled jars of house-brewed beer served a drunken stumble from the beach, La Factoria is related to a similar well-established brewpub in Havana.

Bar in Varadero

La Bodeguita del Medio

In recent years, Varadero has sprouted a copy of Hemingway's favorite Havana dive bar, aka La Bodeguita del Medio, a cool place where musicians strum in the courtyard and punters add graffiti to the walls inside...

Coffee in Varadero

La Isabelica Casa del Café

In the Miami-esque Marina Gaviota at the eastern end of the peninsula, you get a Miami-esque cafe. The Isabelica tries to impress Starbucks-starved tourists with its Ikea-like sofas and coffee-growing scenes on...

Bar in Matanzas

Ruinas de Matasiete

The city's famed drinking hole is a frenetic place housed in the ruins of a 19th-century, bay-facing warehouse. Drinks and grilled meats are served on an open-air terrace. In recent years, it has become a favored...

Bar in Matanzas

Kaiser Bistro Kuba

Dark, coolly air-conditioned and rather swish for Matanzas, this small, mod bar has tables that light up to show old city landmarks. Cocktails are incredible, ditto the espresso. For the peckish there are ham and...

Cafe in Varadero

Casa del Chocolate

New cafe specializing in hot or cold mugs of Baracoan chocolate, a concoction that manages to taste both sweet and bitter at the same time. There’s inside and outside seating, and assorted confectionery sold from...

Cafe in Matanzas


What begins as an old-school art-supplies shop and exhibition venue leads back into a courtyard reminiscent of bohemian Paris, where artsy culture vultures sit around slurping strong coffee and conversing...

Bar in Varadero

Calle 62

Set in the transition zone between old and new Varadero, this simple snack bar attracts clientele from both ends. It's good for a cheese sandwich during the day, and the ambience becomes feistier after dark with...

Cafe in Matanzas

Café Mambo Jambo

Hardworking little private cafe full of antique radios and old album covers that serves strong coffee, frapuccinos and basic snacks. Clientele is a mix of arty students and old ladies fresh from a makeover at the...

Club in Varadero

Palacio de la Rumba

Overall, the most banging night out on the peninsula if you like a drink or six. There's live salsa music at weekends and a good mix of Cubans and tourists. Admission includes your drinks. It's located by the...

Bar in Matanzas

Taberna Plaza la Vigía

Rum and draft beer rule the menu, while old-timers and young students make up the clientele in this old, stripped-down bar, a dusty relic in an otherwise grand building. The ultimate anti-Varadero escape.

Bar in Varadero

Bar Mirador

Bar Mirador

On the top floor of Mansión Xanadú, the dark-wood Bar Mirador is Varadero's ultimate romantic hangout where happy hour conveniently coincides with sunset cocktails.

Club in Varadero

Discoteca la Bamba

Varadero's most modern video disco is at Hotel Tuxpán, in eastern Varadero. It plays mostly Latin music and is considered 'hot.'