Are you wondering if traveling to Cuba is a good idea for kids? This island country is totally safe and a fun destination for travelers of all ages! And one of the things we’ve learned taking children to Cuba is that they often bring a surprising perspective along with unique observations that could help you appreciate the charming island even more.
If you’re worried about safety or accommodations — don’t be. Cuba is relatively well-developed in many areas and even rivals many top-notch destinations in the Caribbean and Latin American in terms of safety, infrastructure, attractions and activities. An added bonus is the hospitality of the Cuban people who will make you feel right at home even with little ones in tow.
If you’re going to take the leap and travel to Cuba with kids. Here are some things that you should know.
Of course, you can stay in resorts and hotels in Cuba. However, if you’d like something more “homey,” Cuba offers a housing option known as the casa particular. In the same vein as an Airbnb, these are homes rented to travelers on a temporary basis.
The good news is that this form of accommodation is nothing new to the island. Casa particulares were officially approved by the government for rental in the 1990s. Since then, private Cuban citizens have opened their homes to tourists all over the world.
Having a place with home-like accommodations including a kitchen, dining area or even washing machine can make a big difference for parents traveling with little ones. The convenience of a rental home will make it easier to retreat to someplace quiet with all the creature comforts of home for the downtime your kids might need on a vacation like this.
Food & Water
Cuban cuisine is not only delicious but also versatile. You can get kid-friendly versions of many foods you’d find anywhere else like pasta, fruit, rice, chicken, or french fries. Cubans are used to tourists, including picky eaters like some kids can be.
Again, this is where Cuban hospitality will shine. Many establishments will work with you to find something children can eat — even if it means creating a custom dish.
If your child has food sensitivities, it might be best to carry along as many snacks as possible in case there aren’t an abundance of allergy-friendly foods. Even though many restaurants will do their best to accommodate you, there may be times where they simply do not have something available.
Finally, if you are concerned about the safety of Cuban food for your kids, you should be just fine if you stick to eating at commercial establishments and are cautious about how items are washed. (Make sure they washed anything raw on your plate with bottled water.) Be cautious when it comes to consuming street foods from a kiosk, food cart or coolers sold by local peddlers. Avoid drinking tap water and ask your host to supply you with bottled water instead.
Cuba’s national healthcare system is very efficient with well-trained practitioners in many medical disciplines. When you travel to the country, you are required to purchase travel insurance. Most airlines and tourism companies will arrange your health insurance along with the proof you need to keep handy while in the country.
Should something happen to you or your child that requires medical care, you would be admitted to one of Cuba’s care centers for treatment.
Depending on when you visit, the heat in Cuba, along with the humidity, can sometimes be overwhelming. There are some safety precautions you can take such as limiting the amount of time spent outdoors and in direct sunlight and making sure to apply sunscreen liberally, wear hats, and drink plenty of water.
Activities & Culture
While we’ve addressed some of the logistics and safety concerns, you probably want to know, “Will Cuba actually be fun for my kid?” The answer is a resounding, “Yes!” Cuba is likely a very different world than you child has ever seen or experienced before.
There are many things to explore and discuss from so many angles — from culture, to language, animal and plant life and even architecture — there will be plenty of sights, sounds and activities to soak in for tourists of all ages.
If you’d like to explore Cuba with your kids, consider booking a Private Getaway or tour with insightCuba. There are plenty of options and themes to choose from to help your trip to Cuba become a favorite family memory.
Written By: Aja McClanahan