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No visit to Cuba is complete without a visit to Trinidad – Cuba's best-preserved colonial city and in its entirety a National Historic Monument (and UNESCO World Heritage Site). Founded by Diego de Velázquez in 1514, this charmer is a living museum lent added appeal by its setting of natural beauty: The hilltop town gazes down over the Caribbean and is backed by the Sierra Escambray mountains. At least two full days are required for exploring the cobbled streets and plazas, lined with 18th-century mansions and homes, many of them now museums. Trinidad's yesteryear lifestyle seems equally pickled in aspic. Mule-drawn carts and cowboys on ...

No visit to Cuba is complete without a visit to Trinidad – Cuba's best-preserved colonial city and in its entirety a National Historic Monument (and UNESCO World Heritage Site). Founded by Diego de Velázquez in 1514, this charmer is a living museum lent added appeal by its setting of natural beauty: The hilltop town gazes down over the Caribbean and is backed by the Sierra Escambray mountains. At least two full days are required for exploring the cobbled streets and plazas, lined with 18th-century mansions and homes, many of them now museums. Trinidad's yesteryear lifestyle seems equally pickled in aspic. Mule-drawn carts and cowboys on horseback clip-clop through the streets. When you tire of strolling the streets, head to nearby Playa Ancón, the most beautiful beach along Cuba's southern shore, or to the Sierra Escambray for hiking and birding in Gran Parque Natural Topes de Collantes. And if the steam-train is operating, hop aboard for a half-day excursion to the Valle de los Ingenios (Valley of the Sugar Mills). Trinidad is a center for santería (Afro-Cuban religion) and traditional music; you won't want to go to bed for fear of missing a vital experience.

Christopher Baker
About the Expert

Christopher P. Baker has authored guidebooks to Costa Rica, California, and various Caribbean islands for Frommer's, Lonely Planet, and National Geographic, among others.

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Christopher Baker for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Trinidad is a town in the province of Sancti Spíritus, central Cuba. Together with the nearby Valle de los Ingenios, it has been one of UNESCOs World Heritage sites since 1988.
  • Language: Spanish
  • Currency: Cuban Peso
  • Research: Cuba | Wikipedia | Wikitravel | Sancti-Spiritus
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Easter and Christmas for religious celebrations. Early spring for the best weather.