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Varadero to Havana - Anything to see along the way?

Varadero to Havana - Anything to see along the way?

Old Jan 24, 16, 10:08 pm
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Question Varadero to Havana - Anything to see along the way?

Hi everyone,

so I've been able to find a casa particular in Havana and have my one night in Varadero at a resort before returning to Canada.

Anyways the casa has offered to set up a taxi to pick me up at the airport in Varadero for 100CUC.
While I'd be ok with taking the bus otherwise, doing so means I get into Havana at 730 as opposed to 3-4ish max with the taxi. I land at 130pm.

While I'm leaning towards not doing the taxi route, before deciding, I'm curious if there's anything worth stopping off to see/photo shot along the way to Havana.

For the return to Varadero though, I would be taking the bus.

Thanks in advance!
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Old Jan 25, 16, 8:13 am
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CUC 100 sounds a little steep. That said, not much seems to be available at VRA so unless you can get to Matanzas to find a ride at the bus terminal.

I also think that it's going to take you a lot longer than 1:30-2:30 to get from VRA to Havana assuming a 1330 landing time (flying in on WS?)

I took a taxi from VRA to Matanzas (bargained it down to CUC 20 from 25) and the bussed from Matanzas to Havana the next day (reservations on the bus are strongly advised - we didn't reserve but got the only 2 unreserved seats available as we were first in line).

As for what to see, not really too much. I think there is Cuba's longest bridge that the bus does not stop at (does stop at some rest stop for a few minutes). Don't think there is too much otherwise.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 8:46 am
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100 CUC is steep, the rate is usually about 80 CUC I think and 20 probably will go into the Casa owner's pocket.

I have done this many times in a private car. You can probably get something below 80 but you'll have to search and bargain.

Also Viazul leaves from Varadero and its cheap just like YVR Cockroach said.

Solwayscuba charging 95 Euro one way for a transfer
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Old Jan 25, 16, 5:43 pm
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Originally Posted by YVR Cockroach View Post
CUC 100 sounds a little steep. That said, not much seems to be available at VRA so unless you can get to Matanzas to find a ride at the bus terminal.

I also think that it's going to take you a lot longer than 1:30-2:30 to get from VRA to Havana assuming a 1330 landing time (flying in on WS?)

I took a taxi from VRA to Matanzas (bargained it down to CUC 20 from 25) and the bussed from Matanzas to Havana the next day (reservations on the bus are strongly advised - we didn't reserve but got the only 2 unreserved seats available as we were first in line).

As for what to see, not really too much. I think there is Cuba's longest bridge that the bus does not stop at (does stop at some rest stop for a few minutes). Don't think there is too much otherwise.
Ya. I'm in westjet.
If I do the bus it's $12 USD so I'd buy that ahead of time and take it right from the airport.

I presume to negotiate a deal I'd have to make it to the bus terminal or is it something I can try my luck at from the airport?
Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
100 CUC is steep, the rate is usually about 80 CUC I think and 20 probably will go into the Casa owner's pocket.

I have done this many times in a private car. You can probably get something below 80 but you'll have to search and bargain.

Also Viazul leaves from Varadero and its cheap just like YVR Cockroach said.

Solwayscuba charging 95 Euro one way for a transfer
Any suggestions on where to being searching? All i've been able to find is 135 CUC.

I'm leaning towards viazul since it is diry cheap but thought I'd ask since waiting at the airport pretty much means I lose a day sadly since I only get into Havana at 730ish

Is there wifi at the airport at least? (wishful thinking, I know)
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Old Jan 25, 16, 6:56 pm
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No Wi-FI at airport. I strongly recommend booking the BUS on viazul.com as the seats do sell out. Make sure you book Varadero Airport to Havana.

The Bus does not take long. If you arrive at 1:30Pm and get the Bus at 4:30pm. Personally I take the car, it usually takes about 2 hours.

The only option you have is to negotiate when you land in Varadero, see what they say, but at the same time book the bus. So if you get a cheap rate for a taxi then just take the taxi. I usually pay 80 CUC so if you get a rate of 80 CUC or less then book the cab.


http://www.transfersincuba.com/search-results

www.viazul.com

Last edited by djjaguar64; Jan 25, 16 at 7:21 pm
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:16 pm
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Does the Viazul bus still leave VRA at 1630? Yeah, that is a long time to wait unless your WS flight is late.

I'd suggest doing what I did. Go to Matanzas for the afternoon, spend the night there, and head to Havana by Viazul the next day, You'll come out ahead financially.

Not much infrastructure at VRA unfortunately and I doubt there is wifi or internet access of any sort but things may change/have changed (e.g., no public wifi in April 2015 but in more places now).
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:22 pm
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Sorry I made a correction, I was under the impression that you land in VRA at 730am. There is a 4:35pm bus from Varadero.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 8:10 pm
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
No Wi-FI at airport. I strongly recommend booking the BUS on viazul.com as the seats do sell out. Make sure you book Varadero Airport to Havana.

The Bus does not take long. If you arrive at 1:30Pm and get the Bus at 4:30pm. Personally I take the car, it usually takes about 2 hours.

The only option you have is to negotiate when you land in Varadero, see what they say, but at the same time book the bus. So if you get a cheap rate for a taxi then just take the taxi. I usually pay 80 CUC so if you get a rate of 80 CUC or less then book the cab.


http://www.transfersincuba.com/search-results

www.viazul.com
I guess I could always possibly luck out and maybe find a ride share for less, but at 80 CUC (plus bus) the end cost is the same as the "cheap" taxi and bus (total cost)
Short of a deal of course.
Originally Posted by YVR Cockroach View Post
Does the Viazul bus still leave VRA at 1630? Yeah, that is a long time to wait unless your WS flight is late.

I'd suggest doing what I did. Go to Matanzas for the afternoon, spend the night there, and head to Havana by Viazul the next day, You'll come out ahead financially.

Not much infrastructure at VRA unfortunately and I doubt there is wifi or internet access of any sort but things may change/have changed (e.g., no public wifi in April 2015 but in more places now).
I can't go to Matanzas since I have a booking in Havana for the evening, but good to know!
Guess I'll read at the airport and/or people watch.

I hope I get checked luggage at least...
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Old Jan 26, 16, 7:01 am
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Is this your first time to Cuba? If you have a reservation then go directly to HAV. Also since your flight lands pretty late in VRA, I mean there is no rush to get to HAV anyway as half your day is gone. Just enjoy the bus ride, and yes there is a lugagge compartment, do book now.

I usually opt for the 6am flights if I am connecting to HAV via VRA. Have my favourite cab driver pick me up.
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Old Jan 31, 16, 9:58 am
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
Is this your first time to Cuba? If you have a reservation then go directly to HAV. Also since your flight lands pretty late in VRA, I mean there is no rush to get to HAV anyway as half your day is gone. Just enjoy the bus ride, and yes there is a lugagge compartment, do book now.

I usually opt for the 6am flights if I am connecting to HAV via VRA. Have my favourite cab driver pick me up.
I guess I took too long to book it because it's gone.

I sent an email to the casa lady to ask if she can do 80 CUC, so we'll see...

at least I was able to book the return portion though.

Any other suggestions in the event she's not willing to budge down to 80?

I mean is it crazy for me to "risk it all" and hope to find someone at the airport that's also going to Havana? Seems like along shot sadly...
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Old Feb 1, 16, 10:44 am
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Originally Posted by iceblueshoes View Post
I guess I took too long to book it because it's gone.

I sent an email to the casa lady to ask if she can do 80 CUC, so we'll see...

at least I was able to book the return portion though.

Any other suggestions in the event she's not willing to budge down to 80?

I mean is it crazy for me to "risk it all" and hope to find someone at the airport that's also going to Havana? Seems like along shot sadly...
Don't spoil the casa lady, 30 Euro's is the rate. If not stay at Vedado hotel.
I wish you good luck to share a ride with someone at VRA, you are going to have a challenge.
Casa's work on a first come first basis. I know many who booked and when they arrived no casa. The owners need money in hand and whomever arrives first gets the casa.
Why not book Vedado hotel is you are willing to pay 80 per night?
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Old Feb 4, 16, 5:13 am
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
Don't spoil the casa lady, 30 Euro's is the rate. If not stay at Vedado hotel.
I wish you good luck to share a ride with someone at VRA, you are going to have a challenge.
Casa's work on a first come first basis. I know many who booked and when they arrived no casa. The owners need money in hand and whomever arrives first gets the casa.
Why not book Vedado hotel is you are willing to pay 80 per night?
Sorry, I meant the bus is gone (sold out) to Havana.

My hotel is fine. I've been communicating with the casa lady via email. She's charging me 35 CUC/night in the historical centre which is where I want to be.

Should I try to get a ride share at the airport or take a cab to the bus station?
I'm thinking I'd have better luck at the bus station perhaps, but has anyone done this?
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Old Feb 4, 16, 7:16 am
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Originally Posted by iceblueshoes View Post
Sorry, I meant the bus is gone (sold out) to Havana.

My hotel is fine. I've been communicating with the casa lady via email. She's charging me 35 CUC/night in the historical centre which is where I want to be.

Should I try to get a ride share at the airport or take a cab to the bus station?
I'm thinking I'd have better luck at the bus station perhaps, but has anyone done this?
I would not recommend it, that is going to the bus station, if the bus is sold out its sold out.
Dish out the cash and pay for a cab you have no choice. I think CAD$1 will give you 60 centavos. Good Luck and enjoy Cuba.
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Old Feb 5, 16, 5:02 am
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Originally Posted by djjaguar64 View Post
I would not recommend it, that is going to the bus station, if the bus is sold out its sold out.
Dish out the cash and pay for a cab you have no choice. I think CAD$1 will give you 60 centavos. Good Luck and enjoy Cuba.
Thanks,

I guess I'll cut my losses and email the casa lady and have her set up the airport transfer.
You win some, you lose some.
Beats walking to Havana though. lol

Plus less likely she'll end up selling my room to someone else if she made the airport transfer reservation! --- I hope!
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Old Feb 15, 16, 2:57 am
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When is it you are travelling?

Viazul you have to book a minimum of 7 days in advance. There is a Viazul office at the Airport, but was not open when I was there

You should also check to see where the bus is full to? Check Varadero-Havana, Varadero Airport to Havana, Mantanzas - Havana. It may be open from Mantanzas

Myself and 4 other people caught Viazul at 1230 from the Airport, no advance booking Jan 27. The bus was full. We stood to Mantanzas and then had seats from Mantanzas to Havana

Depending on incoming flights, you maybe able to grab one of the buses that the package tours use. Ask the various tour company reps right after you get out of the airport.

You can also check there may be others from your flight waiting for the bus. If you are waiting, ask around and may be able to split a taxi.

On your way back Havana - Varadero on Viazul, you should be able to take another bus right from Viazul station to your resort. I think it is 3 or 4 CUCs
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