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Havana to Varadero2016-05-04T20:38:55+00:00

Best Cuba Guide Forums General Havana to Varadero

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  • Avatarrbr
    Participant
    Post count: 1

    We have hotels booked in Havana and Varadero, but need to travel between Havana Old Town and Vardero beach hotel. There are two of us traveling together.

    Taxis seem very expensive.

    Viazul bus seems reasonable price.

    Is it ok to book this online?

    Will the bus arrive reliably on time?

    where do I pick up the bus in Havana?

    Where do I collect the bus tickets?

    Are these buses reliable and will get us to our destination or should we pay the extra for a taxi?

    When we get to Varadero, how far is the bus stop from the hotels?

     

    AvatarMario
    Keymaster
    Post count: 215

    Hi, here are some answers:

     

    Taxis seem very expensive.

    Yes, taxis are not cheap. But they provide door to door service, and they are considerably faster than buses. A taxi from Havana to Varadero cost about 95$. You can sometimes find a cheaper rate if you hunt around and find a driver who is going in that direction. If you speak Spanish, this would help. Or else, it’s 95$, the trip takes about 2 hours and they pick you up in Havana and drop you off wherever you want in Varadero. You can see if you can find another couple of people to come in the taxi and split the cost with the other couple. It’s not difficult to find. Around the Viazul station there will be dozens of people who could not get bus tickets, looking to share rides with other people.

    Viazul bus seems reasonable price.

    Yes, the Viazul is pretty cheap. A trip from Havana to Varadero is 10cuc per person. It takes about 3.5 hours if I recall correctly. It’s reliable. There is air conditioning. it’s a good ride. But you have to consider that you will need to get to the bus station (located at the corner of 26th and Zoologico in Nuevo Vedado – west of Vedado… in front of the Havana Zoo). The trip from Old Havana to the bus station should cost about 5cuc, but some drivers might want as much as 10cuc. Don’t pay more than that. In Varadero the bus usually makes a stop in the town of Varadero, along the main street. You could get off there and then take a taxi to your hotel. The taxi would cost about 10 to 15cuc. Things are more expensive in Varadero and it’s actually a pretty big place, so the drive to your hotel might be up to 20 minutes. The main bus stop in Varadero is at the corner of 36th and the highway. You can also find a taxi there. It would probably be about the same price to get to your hotel. So, for 2 people, the trip to Varadero, from Old Havana would cost on the low end, about 35cuc total. If your taxis are more expensive, it can cost about 45cuc total. It’s a good savings, but it takes more time than a direct taxi.

    Is it ok to book this online? 

    Yes. Book online and book as early as possible. There is a severe shortage of buses and too many tourists. Most people book weeks in advance. Once booked, you have about a 95% chance of everything going well. Sometimes reservations get bumped or scheduling problems happen. It’s rare. Usually things go fine. Always arrive to the bus station at least 30 minutes before departure in order to check in and check your luggage.

    Will the bus arrive reliably on time?

    More or less. I’ve never had issues. The bus is pretty good and modern and the drivers are reliable. Things happen, but mostly it is fine.

    where do I pick up the bus in Havana?

    Bus station located at the corner of 26th and Zoologico in Nuevo Vedado – west of Vedado… in front of the Havana Zoo

    Where do I collect the bus tickets?

    At the bus station. If you book online then you just show up on the day and time your bus leaves. But show up 30 minutes early or a bit more, just to be safe. You can go the day before to confirm that the station has your reservation. But I warn you, they don’t speak much English at the station, so you would have to find a way to explain that you are simply there to confirm they have your reservation.

    Are these buses reliable and will get us to our destination or should we pay the extra for a taxi?

    Depends how important your budget is. When I was younger, I always took the Viazul. It was my main mode of transportation. I also was on a tight budget. These days I tend to take taxis more just because I can make my own schedule, leave whenever I want, and the trip in a taxi is about half the time. But still, I try to find other people to come in the taxi to share the ride costs.

    When we get to Varadero, how far is the bus stop from the hotels?

    Usually pretty far. The bus terminal is close to the town, and the driver can even drop you off in the town, near the main park. But the large tourist hotels (the good ones at least) are located far away. Up to 20 minutes driving distance from the town. The Varadero peninsula is very long. It depends which hotel you are staying at, but I don’t think you would be able to walk from the station to your hotel, especially not with luggage.

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