Wow, Mario – thanks for the prompt and detailed answer – it truly helps. No wonder your guide book is highly rated and appreciated by fellow readers. Will be happy to share our tips after the trip as well.
I’ve been to more than 50 countries and usually make road trips everywhere, but was hesitant to rent a car in Cuba after reading so many recommendations against this. Until Vazul buses got full and we booked cars before they were gone as well, as we want to see of-the-beaten track places and be independent with our schedule.
Would be grateful for your tips regarding 3 driving destinations to finalize my route:
is it worth time and effort to drive to Baracoa from Santiago de Cuba on a way to Holguin/Guardalavaca – we are doing a 2-week drive-around-Cuba trip with two economy size rental cars (i.e. not SUV/4W or very powerful engines). I’ve been reading a lot of most recent blogs and watching vlogs/youtube from 2017. My concern is (a) that roads will be very bad/washed away during hurricane and the area is mountainous and (b) the time to get there is comparatively high – is it that much different from other parts in Cuba (nature/food/etc) to justify the effort?
Cayo Jutias – is it accessible by a car? If not, which beach around Cuba is truly nice (a ka postcard paradise, but not in the tourist resort. We also plan to drive to Cayo Caco, partly for the beach, partly for the road itself). This Cayo Jutias beach was recommended by Cuban Travel reps during recent travel fair I’ve attended, but I’ve just read an article from a journalist, who went there by taxi 3 weeks ago and complained about extremely poor road conditions and 3 hours for a 50 km distance.
Isla de la Juventud – again, is it worth the effort to take the pedestrian (?) ferry to/from the island. I am intrigued to see the prison ruins, but it seems to be at least a full day effort, so, again, I wonder to do it, or to skip/postpone to the next time in Cuba (if ever).