Top 19 Cuba Beaches

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Cuba lies at the meeting point of three main bodies of water; the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. As such, it has a wide variety of stunning beaches along its 3,570 miles of pristine coastline, each with their own unique atmosphere to enjoy.

From the bustling beach resort town of Varadero to the spellbindingly beautiful coral reefs of Cayo Coco, to the old worldly feel of the capital, Havana, there truly is something for every kind of beach-lover on this historic island.

Cuba doesn't just offer world class beaches. The centre of the island is home to beautiful, green rolling hills, full of hiking and biking trails making Cuba an ideal destination for anyone looking for an active, outdoors-based holiday.
But if you're a pure sun worshipper who loves to sit back and relax on buttery soft, golden sands with a rum cocktail or two, Cuba is definitely for you too.

So whatever kind of beach loving traveller you are, there's definitely a patch of sand somewhere in Cuba with your name on it. Check out the top-rated options with our list of the best beaches in Cuba.

  • 1. Playa Paraiso

    Playa Paraiso
    © sergey02

    Playa Paraiso is a fabulous stretch of beach where soft, powdery white sand runs parallel to a turquoise sea, all under an almost eternally clear blue sky. It is sandwiched between Playa Blanca and Playa Sirena beaches to the east and west respectively. These and a number of other top-rated beaches are dotted around the resort island of Cayo Largo, just off the Cuban southwest coast. Access to the island… read more »

  • 2. Playa Varadero

    Playa Varadero
    © Dalgis Lopez

    Within easy reach of the Cuban capital, Varadero Beach is just two hours west of Havana along good roads. The near-white sand stretches out into the Caribbean Sea on a thin peninsula of land for a staggering 20 kilometres (12 miles).

    Also known as Blue Beach (Playa Azul) because of the colour of the sea at this point, which laps it with warm waters all year round. No surprise then that… read more »

  • 3. Cayo Santa Maria

    Cayo Santa Maria
    Eric Marshall

    Connected to Cuba's main island at Caibarien by a long causeway, Cayo Santa Maria is one of a series of small islands lining the country's northern shores from Matanzas in the west to Camalote in the east.

    Little more than a sand bank which rises just four metres above the waves of the Caribbean, Cayo Santa Maria has exquisite white sand beaches totalling 13 kilometres in length, alongside warm turquoise shallows… read more »

  • 4. Playa Sirena

    Playa Sirena
    gian luca bucci

    Playa Sirena is a white sand beach located within the Caribbean Sea waters of Cayo Largo, a small island off Cuba's southern coast with its own international airport. Dotted with mature palms and thatched tiki-style parasols providing plenty of shade, Playa Sirena (or Siren Beach) is the largest and best-equipped of Cayo Largo's beaches accessible independently of the island's resort hotels. It has a length of around two kilometres, and… read more »

  • 5. Playa Bueycabón

    Playa Bueycabón
    DnTrotaMundos ☮

    Playa Bueycabón lies approximately 20 kilometres from the centre of Santiago de Cuba along highway 20, on Cuba's southern Caribbean Sea coastline. Located in a deep bay with calm waters as a result, Playa Bueycabón rarely becomes crowded, ensuring a feeling of tranquillity.

    Those looking to absorb some vitamin D can make use of the sun loungers and thatched parasols which dot its smooth yellow sands, before joining the local vendors… read more »

  • 6. Playa Pilar

    Playa Pilar
    © Andromachos Dimitrokallis

    The one kilometre of finely-graded white sand of Playa Pilar sits on the northwest coast of Cayo Guillermo, itself off the northwest coast of Cayo Coco. Part of the cluster of keys which stretch along Cuba's north coast, Playa Pilar makes for a perfect escape, given its sparkling blue shallows. Protected by an offshore coral reef, which is a stunning attraction for snorkellers and scuba divers of all ages,… read more »

  • 7. Playa Rancho Luna

    Playa Rancho Luna
    © Jan Pešula

    Close to Cienfuegos, Playa Rancho Luna is widely held to be one of Cuba’s most attractive beaches, with its popularity rocketing as a result. Here, soft fine sand meets the turquoise waters of the Caribbean, while lush indigenous vegetation lines its edges including several tall palms. Additional shade comes in the form of semi-permanent thatched umbrellas.

    Playa Rancho Luna has long been known in diving circles because of its bustling coral… read more »

  • 8. Playa Coco

    Playa Coco
    © Rickybolgia

    Roughly one kilometre from El Baga Natural Park, Playa Coco is located on the north coast of Cayo Coco, a small island off Cuba. Connected via a causeway crossing the Bahia de Perros waterway, the beach is formed from a narrow strip of powdery white sand lining a wide bay.

    Meeting crystal clear shallows unobstructed by submerged rocks, Playa Coco is suitable for sunbathing and swimming. An offshore coral reef allows… read more »

  • 9. Playa Maguana

    Playa Maguana
    Christopher L.

    Approximately 20 kilometres north of Baracoa in the far east of Cuba, Playa Maguana has golden sands which run for about a kilometre. It is edged by a thick carpet of tropical planting studded with only occasional buildings. Equally well protected from its coastal side, an offshore coral reef prevents oceanic waves sweeping Playa Maguana while providing a habitat for colourful fish which can be seen when snorkelling.

    Enjoyed by local… read more »

  • 10. Playa Ancón

    Playa Ancón
    Martin Cígler

    Just 20 minutes from the town of Trinidad by a ride in one of Cuba's stylish vintage taxis, Playa Ancón forms an idyllic ribbon of white sand running alongside the light blue waters of the Caribbean Sea.

    Tall palms provide natural shade from the sun, while other forms of native vegetation provide a home for the iguanas which can often be seen basking on sand which extends uninterrupted for four kilometres.

    Rarely… read more »

  • 11. Playa Santa Lucia

    Playa Santa Lucia
    carlos adan

    Playa Santa Lucia tops out at an impressive 20 kilometres long, making it one of the largest beaches anywhere on Cuba. Approximately 100 kilometres from the country's third-biggest city, Camaguey, its sands line the country's northern coast.

    Although large, Playa Santa Lucia remains mostly undeveloped, allowing beachgoers to enjoy the natural beauty of the island at its best. This ranges from thick native vegetation to habitat for flamingos and a coral… read more »

  • 12. Playa Santa Maria

    Playa Santa Maria
    Alexander Berezhnoy

    Playa Santa Maria sits at the end of the road from Camaguey. Situated within an area rich in mangrove deltas, it has become a haven for Cuba's endemic birdlife.

    Beachgoers are generally impressed by what they find at Playa Santa Maria, which comprises light-coloured sand drifting down to stone-free shallows which sparkle in the sunlight. However, largely occupied by beachfront properties, some may find they get a feeling of being overlooked,… read more »

  • 13. Playa Damajayabo

    Playa Damajayabo
    Christian Pirkl

    A short distance east of the city of Santiago de Cuba on the island's southern Caribbean coastline, Playa Damajayabo is an uncrowded virgin beach comprising greyish sand and smooth pebbles. On its sands natural shade is cast by the trees and plant cover which edge the beach. This slips gently into rich blue waters arching across a wide bay.

    Surrounded by low hills with little signs of a human presence, Playa… read more »

  • 14. El Francés

    El Francés
    Christian Pirkl

    Playa El Francés can be found on Cuba's southern Caribbean coastline a short distance west of the city of Santiago. Stretching back from warm waters to Highway 20, it is easily reached by road, allowing locals and visitors to spend time on this pristine piece of golden sand.

    Approximately 500 metres long, Playa El Francés curves ever so slightly around its bay, while mature trees provide some natural shade for beachgoers.… read more »

  • 15. Playa Juraguá

    Playa Juraguá
    Christian Pirkl

    Sitting deep within the D of a small bay to the east of Santiago de Cuba, Playa Juraguá may not be the island's broadest stretch of sand, but it is nonetheless a fantastic place to escape to when the Caribbean Sea beckons. Here a coastline peppered with small rocks evolves into a largely stone-free run of clean sand which continues for around 500 yards.

    A grassy area also provides the ideal… read more »