If you really want to meet Cuban girls, you have to get your booty to Cuba!
There is only so much online dating can do for you. Of course, Cuban Americans are another option, but often they're not so different from the generic American girl. And if you're into the sensual, salsa-dancing, rum-sipping type, this is bad news.
Fortunately, Cuba is one of the most exciting destinations on Earth. Yeah, your main goal may be to meet Cuban girls, but the country itself is pretty dope, too.
After the revolution, it was as though they flipped a switch and froze the place in the 50's. The cobbled streets, the retro cars, the salsa bars, the rum, the top-quality cigars...yes, it is exactly like the postcards. So remember to look around and not just focus on girls.
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Havana: Tourist Traps And Hidden Gems
Havana is amazing, hands-down. It should be considered a crime to go to Cuba without visiting the capital. But while the city is just as gorgeous and lively as it is hyped up to be, how good are the girls?
Answer: Not very.
Havana gets millions of visitors every year. Locals get around $20-25 in salaries. Put two and two together and you get the infamous jineteras (and lately, jineteros).
Meet Cuban Girls For Free?
Jineteras are basically prostitutes and they're everywhere. The term came from a Fidel Castro speech where he said the girls of Cuba have everything they need. Those who chose to sleep with (or, as he said it, ride) foreigners did so for pleasure, not for money.
He also said there is no prostitution in Cuba.
Safe to say good old Fidel didn't get it right... At all!
Jinetera comes from the Spanish word for a jockey. But they do ride foreigners for money.
That being said, there is nothing wrong with paying for sex per se. As long as you stay safe (nobody wants to take an STD back from vacation), you'll find jineteras to be much better than expected. They're not the typical street whore, although you will meet most of them on the street.
Jineteras are warm and friendly, they're more like "girlfriend for hire" than a pay-per-hour whore. That being said, most Cuban girls, especially in tourist-dense areas, come with a price tag.
Havana Dating: Go Against The Flow
If you're determined to meet a sweet local girl who is not looking to make some buck from you, you'd have to work for it. Dating in Havana doesn't come with the usual shortcuts like Tinder. Your day and night game should be top-notch because local guys are already Latino lovers.
Beautiful girls are used to compliments. You'd have to be on your A game to beat local men at their own craft.
Your biggest advantage will always be your foreigner status. To non-jinetera women, you are a novelty. Use that to your advantage.
And, as you always should in touristy places, go against the flow. Wherever other foreigners go, go the other way.
Look For Students
Students are a particularly safe bet in Havana. You will meet tons of them in Vedado, close to the universities. Most uni students live here and they also party here.
You will meet them in the street, not in bars. Most locals party on plazas and street corners, sharing a bottle of rum with their friends, blasting their music and having full-on dance parties under the stars. It is pretty magical, whether you're there to meet Cuban girls or not.
Speaking Spanish is a must here. People are super friendly and you'd have no problem finding a party crew. It's one of the best ways to meet non-prostitutes and have a blast. Except you can't really do it without Spanish.
Lessons are fairly cheap, at around $2-5/hour. Ask your casa particular owner to recommend a teacher. Another program I like is Rocket Languages.
They are way more comprehensive and structured than Duolingo and they give you lifetime access to the program.
Trinidad: Lush Life At The Lowest Price
Cuba, in general, is very cheap. Even the most foreigner-dense areas of Havana are still fairly affordable. But in Trinidad, you'd be truly amazed!
And you will not be bored either. The historic centre is a UNESCO world heritage site (just like Havana) and cars can't enter. Roll the clips of beautiful cobbled streets and horse carriages. Trinidad is the stuff of dreams!
Make sure you visit the Museo Romántico opposite the Plaza Mayor. It's not that impressive of a collection but the panoramic view alone is worth your entrance fee.
Don't forget the beach either. There are miles upon miles of white-sand virgin beaches for you to explore. One of the best spots for pre-drinks (and early evening romantic strolls with your Cuban gal) is playa Ancon. The best sunset of the Caribbean!
Finally, how do you meet Cuban girls in Trinidad? You go to the plazas and join a friendly group. It helps if you can salsa dance and Spanish, once again, is a must. Don't hang out around other foreigners, it's best to fly solo or with one friend tops. It also helps if your friend is not hideous-looking and also speaks Spanish.
From there on, it's just about following your newly found friends. In the best-case scenario, they will take you to one of the secret, locals-only cave discos around Trinidad. A bottle of rum will only set you back around 5$ so prepare to dance the night away!
Cienfuegos: French Vibes Meet Latino Heat
Cienfuegos is something else.
Thanks to the French influence, locals are among the most cultured, educated, and European-like in the country. At the same time, they still have the Latino fire we all know and love.
Cubans themselves say it: the girls of Cienfuegos are the most beautiful and the smartest in Cuba.
The beach is another big reason to visit. They don't call Cienfuegos the pearl of the South for nothing. The bay, Bahia de Jagua, is something straight out of a Catherine Heigl movie set. Take a ferry across the bay to visit the Spanish fortress Castillo de Jagua to enjoy breathtaking views and innumerable photo opportunities.
When you get back, grab a bite at El Tranvia. It's a restaurant dedicated to old trams and one of the best spots to experience the authentic Cienfuegos atmosphere. Apart from their fun décor, they also boast some of the best traditional Cuban food in the city!
Baracoa: Off The Beaten Track And Beyond
Baracoa could not be more hidden. Most tourists don't even know about it. At 400 miles away from Havana, it's not exactly a place you stumble upon.
But make the journey and you will be rewarded with a glimpse into authentic Cuban life. You can meet Cuban girls anywhere but it never gets more untouched by tourist's hands than Baracoa. This also means fewer (if any) prostitutes and that you can't survive without Spanish.
On the plus side, Baracoa is super cheap and there is plenty to do. This is Cuba's oldest colonial town, founded in 1500, and plenty of the historic buildings remain. At night, head over to Plaza Independencia where all the buzz is centred. Grab a 1$ beer (or even cheaper), stretch your feet out, and look around for the girl you like.
Santiago de Cuba: Chaos And Beauty
Santiago is Cuba's second largest city and the cultural capital of the place. That being said, don't expect toned-down and cultured activities. Santiago de Cuba is, in fact, one of the most bizarre, chaotic, and charming places you will visit.
The citadel of San Pedro de la Roca is your must-visit for the day. UNESCO enlisted it as world heritage and describes it as:
The most complete, best-preserved example of Spanish-American military architecture, based on Italian and Renaissance design principles".
Safe to say it's a pretty nice place.
The beaches should be your other top priority.
Santiago boasts one of the most picturesque bays in Cuba.
At night, stop by the main square, which is always packed. The bad news is, no matter how "local" you dress, you will scream tourist. Expect to be approached by people all the time. As one blogger described it:
If it wasn’t taxi drivers then it was people wanting me to eat in their restaurant or go to the best salsa club/bar in all of Cuba. There was also the man that proudly showed me the best looking ‘women friends’ on his phone. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH!
The side streets are a little better. Just pick a cosy bar you like and drink the night away. The rum is cheap, music always fills the streets, and you will meet Cuban girls - plenty of them and beautiful ones, too.
What else is there to ask for?
Your Best Tips To Meet Cuban Girls?
And there you have it--five amazing cities to meet Cuban beauties.
Now it's your turn to tell me your best strategies for meeting, seducing, and dating Cuban gals. Share them with the community in the comments below!