Drink daiquiris like Hemingway in El Floridita
Follow in Hemingway's footsteps with a pub crawl to his favourite haunts, having a daiquiri (or three) at El Floridita and a mojito at La Bodeguita del Medio. Follow up with a visit to his suite at the Hotel Ambos Mundos, where he penned part of For Whom the Bell Tolls.
Feel the beat in Santiago de Cuba
Experience the country's best musicians and dancers hard at work in Santiago de Cuba. Don’t miss Ballet Folklorico Cutumba – their Afro-Cuban performances are simply spectacular – and the city’s annual carnival, a vibrant celebration of colourful costumes, choreography and traditional conga music.
Find your revolution spirit at Museo de la Revolución
Visit the Museo de la Revolución for a historical context of modern Cuba. Outside is the Granma, a cabin cruiser built for 12 people. In 1956, 80 exiled rebels (both Castros and Ché among them) came perilously close to sinking the overcrowded yacht, as they sought to return to Cuba.
Meet a mummy at Museo Emilio Bacardí
Visit the Museo Emilio Bacardí in Santiago de Cuba (“the heroic city”). It contains the rum magnate's collection of antiques and fine art and the Moncada Barracks, where Fidel Castro launched an abortive uprising in 1953. The Castillo El Morro is now a museum of piracy.
Notice the novelties at Palacio de los Capitanes Generales
Head to the Plaza de Armas in Old Havana for a glimpse of colonial majesty at the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, former residence of the Spanish Crown's representatives. Now the Museo de la Ciudad, treasures include a leather cannon and a throne room built for the Spanish monarch but never used.
Party in Havana
Live the high life in Havana's Vedado district. The Hotel Nacional has hosted gangsters and film stars and is well placed for a mojito, as well as carnival processions along the Malecón. For a taste of the traditional, try a chilled daiquiri in one of the leafy patios of the Old Town.
Scuba dive at Treasure Island
There are 30 dive sites at Varadero alone and more reefs around Isla de la Juventud – the inspiration for Treasure Island. The island offers few crowds, bountiful marine life and the chance to wreck dive. One of the world's biggest reefs is offshore at Cayo Coco, and the underwater eye candy at María la Gorda is spectacular.