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I'm Tara.

I'm just a silly little girl who likes to go places and tell her silly little stories.

SLK documents the adventures I've had across 5 continents & who I've become on my journeys. 

You can read my full story here!

10 things to do in Cuba for less than $15

10 things to do in Cuba for less than $15

In certain countries, travelling on a budget is an art form. Besides the obvious {couchsurfing, cooking at your hostel, etc.}, it can sometimes be tricky to cut costs when you want to fully experience a new destination. That's where finding affordable activities comes in handy! 

Cuba wasn't the cheapest place I've ever visited, but after reflecting, I realise I stayed within my budget for a number of reasons. Sure, it helped my wallet out that I had no appetite, but there was plenty that I partook in that cost next to nothing. 

Here are 10 things to do for less than $15 in Cuba! 

1. Try a Cuban cigar

I'm not one to condone smoking {take care of your lungs and be considerate of the lungs of those around you, guys!}, but I tried my first Cuban cigar {cigar full stop actually} in Cuba and it cost me NOTHING! Apparently, it's very common when you visit a family plantation for the owners to give you a free cigar to 'test.' Word of warning, they may try to talk you into buying a full box of cigars {which is pricey}. My solution is to try the free cigar and then leave a tip as a way to thank them for taking the time to explain the tobacco process, etc. 

2. Take private dance lessons

Dirty Dancing 2: Havana Nights. Was it a work of cinematic genius? No. Did it make you wish you were sexy-salsa-ing with Diego Luna? Yes. It costs $10 for an hour dancing, though it's recommended you take two hours worth of lessons. If you're counting your pennies, it's good to know you can still shake your booty on a budget. 

3. Visit John Lennon Park

Not only is the park FREE, it's beautiful. At the time of my visit, the flowering trees were in bloom so the entire park was dotted with bright orange. You'll see a park bench with a statue of John Lennon sitting on it. It's located in a very 'local' area, out of the way of most tourists. I'm not a fan of the man himself, but I am a fan of 'free' and I also found it interesting to see such a Western cultural icon in a random park in Cuba. 

4. Watch fishermen reel in the catch of the day

Walking only costs you time and energy, which makes it one of my favourite FREE activities! Once you get tired of walking the coastline, there are many benches for you to stop and rest on. Luckily, free entertainment in the form of fishermen on little bobbing boats can be found rain or shine, no matter the time of day in Cuba! 

5. Visit Hemingway's old digs

Entry costs $5 to Hemingway's house. It will cost a bit to take a taxi from Havana to San Francisco town, where the house is located. A more affordable option is to catch the city bus, which will run you about $8. That brings your total to $13, which is still under your $15 budget! 

6. Visit the Plaza de la Revolución

Another FREE sight!  It's the 31st largest city square in the world ;) for those of you who like fancy facts. Pope Francis also held public masses in the plaza, which is another claim to fame for the area. Honestly, it's just a photo stop, but it's still worth checking out. 

7. Grab a coffee + write

Cuba being off the grid brings many perks. One of these such perks for creative types is that it's very conducive to writing. I sat in a cafe and wrote for hours in a little notebook. Whatever you're into, grab a drink at a cute cafe {I suggest one with a fan} and enjoy the quiet that comes without checking your e-mails or waiting to hear from someone or getting Instagram notifications.  Coffee will run you around $3 no matter what cafe you pick. 

8. Join in a game of football

Would you believe me if I told you I had the guts to play football with a group of teenage boys after they caught me taking pictures of them? Would you believe it eve more if I finished that story by telling you that after a few meager attempts at kicking the ball I was asked kindly to not play anymore? Maybe you'll have better luck! It was super fun and it only cost me my pride. 

9. Enjoy live music

For the price of a bottle of sparkling water {$2}, you can sit at almost any restaurant, bar, or cafe in the main plaza of Old Havana and watch live musicians perform. 

10. Go to the beach

I, admittedly, did not enjoy this one. I went to the beach, but my bike taxi driver then followed me onto the sand and wouldn't leave me in peace. I went to the public toilets, pretended that a friend called me on my phone {thank goodness for set alarms} and left the beach. Maybe I was overreacting, but something about him trying to sit on my towel with me and watching me get down into my bikini just rubbed me the wrong way. So much so, that I didn't even take a photo of the beach. Luckily, I wasn't too fussed since I'm not too much of a 'beach person' outside of New Zealand. My personal experience shouldn't taint yours. Beaches are pretty famous in Cuba and they are FREE

the art of getting lost

the art of getting lost

Vinales: my private tour of the Cuban countryside

Vinales: my private tour of the Cuban countryside