Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Cuba doesn't have a ready supply of antibiotics (or, for that matter, almost any medications including OTC for such common ailments as headache, nausea, diarrhea, etc.) so the wise traveler will have their own Imodium, ibuprofen, Pepto Bismol, Cipro...and please bring your own hand sanitizer, toilet paper, and wipes. Could save your trip!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Decent bug spray is a must if you're going to be in the countryside.
Miscellaneous: I was told that condiments (salt, pepper) were unavailable, but that wasn't the case in Havana. Maybe if you're out in the wilds?
US travelers would do well to convert at least some of their dollars into Euros or Canadian dollars to avoid the government's 10% tax (on top of the 3% exchange fee), which is not imposed on the other currencies.
- Women's Travel
- Family Travel
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: you dont need many clothes, light cotten is the best. i wore sandels all the time,it was to warm for shoes.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: toiletpaper and lots of it.if you on medication bring enough in your handbag in case your suitcase get lost
Photo Equipment: bring lots of film and batteries you need them
Miscellaneous: allways carry some fresh water around with you
- Women's Travel
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Gifts are very much appreciated. We gave some of ou clothes, shoes, toiletteries to someone, and he gave us 2 bottles of the best rum and a box of cigars for it as a thank you.
school supplies & toys for children
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: bring your vitamins supplies.
- Budget Travel
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Cuba is HOT in the summer months, aka June-September... bring your beach clothes: avoid jeans and bring comfy dresses, skirts, tanks, shorts, several pairs of flip flops, comfy shoes for walking and at least one (or many more) pair of going out partying at the clubs shoes. Cubans dress well! I also recommend bringing a few handkerchiefs or face cloths. I carried one around with me at all times to dab the constant sweat from my face- no one likes a sweat moustache!
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Make sure that you bring all toiletries that you envision needing on your trip - shampoo, soap, conditioner, face wash etc. and the like are 1) hard to come by, even in Havana; 2) where available, more expensive than you would pay for back home.
Bring your own sunscreen (again, it is hard to find and expensive even in Havana) as well as your choice of after-sun lotion - something to keep your moisturizing, stop peeling and to soothe reddened skin.
Bring a pack of mini-Kleenex packs... toilet paper is a rarity in Cuba so carrying a little packet on you at all times will save you when you need to go to the lou in public.
Photo Equipment: Medical continued... I never get tummy problems in Cuba - the water is potable (contrary to some peoples thoughts on the water having parasites- buy bottled or boil just to be safe) and the government outlawed pesticides, antibiotics and other chemicals for agriculture many years ago so the stuff is pretty organic and safe to eat (I got sick coming back to Canada where the food was full of chemicals- my body noticed the difference and I gained back the weight I had lost in Cuba). However, bring tummy soothers just in case (dioval or tums chewables, Zantac for real tummy upset, ibuprofen for aches and pains).
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Bring a beach towel or come ready to buy one at the market (about 5-10 CUC). I brought my own large sarong type towel- its thin enough that it dries quickly, packs up super light and small and can act as a beach blanket, towel, body warming when taking super cold AC buses...
Miscellaneous: Make sure that you come with a good amount of cash (Canadian dollars or Euros are best, forget the US dollars) as well as reliable credit cards (Visa is best as Mastercard is hard to use). Travelers cheques are a safer option but I only know of you being able to cash them at the Hotel Nacional cambio office. They are open until 10 pm daily, charge a commission. Make sure your bank cards, credit cards, traveler's cheques are not issued by an American bank or an American-affiliated bank!
I discourage you from bringing random items and giving them out on the street to Cubans- this encourages begging (especially of children) and people come to expect these types of handouts. If you have friends or family to donate to, then do that; alternatively, some things are useful to leave for the women who will clean your house (we had a maid at our casa particular) or contact an organization that can hook you up with a hospital or school and donate your items to them directly, instead of on the street. PLUS, it can be offensive to people to just dole out items. Cubans are also very proud people and many don't appreciate people treating them like they need charity.
Luggage and bags: Usually when I prepare my luggage, I amke sure to have a tishirt and underwear and some soks in my hand luggage, just in case the big one does not arrive.
Also this time, I put the emergency shirt and underwear in the hand luggage, pity that i forgot to put any underwear in the big one.result one pair of boxer for all the trip.First thing to do In havana so was the hunting of boxers that in spanish I have been told, are calzoncillos.
One morning around supermarkets, markets and asking people where to find them and no result, I could find swimming suite but no calzoncillos.Final result, I had to wash my underwear every night and get it dry in the monrning untill I got to the seaside where I could use the swimming suite!
Luggage and bags: Dont carry tomuch with you and try not to look like a tourist ( hihi if its possible)
Take with you some soap, toiletries, medicines and pencils.
Gifts everywhere are very appreciated and will help you to get rid of beggers.
Always carry bottle of water!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Pack very high factor sun screen as you can hardly buy there and it can be very very hot in the summer.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring with you pens/colouring books/shoes/toothpaste ect ect.. you can trade these with the locals for various services as the shops don't stock that much of those things and the people will be very grateful to reciecve them from you..
- Family Travel
Luggage and bags: If U're backpacking, no need any suggestions, U know already what to bring.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: I suggest U should dress lightly, especially in summer. It is recommended to wear clothes made of cotton, linen or rayon; such as pullovers, shirts, T-shirts, shorts and comfortable shoes (sandals or running shoes).
For winter, a light wool jacket or sweater and cotton pants can be enough for the occasional cold nights.
Sunglasses, a hat and sun lotion are very necessary, as well as repellants against insects, especially if you travel to a beach area.
In some places, it is demanded to dress casually elegant (theaters, concerts and music halls, ballet presentations, luxury restaurants), so your wardrobe must include some appropriate clothing for the occasion.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring toilet paper with U or just go buy it the first day U go out. Many don't have it so better to have with U. Take the basic 1st aid health care.
Photo Equipment: If U've an analog camera, bring enough films, here there aren't good quality ones. Bring also special packages or suitcases to prot4ect your equipment from heavy rain, dust, sun and heat.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Hiking, cicling or caomping si not well developed in Cuba so if U plan to do some of this types of agroturism, better take all U need with U. There are few places where U can rent tents or outdoor gear.
- Hiking and Walking
- Family Travel
Luggage and bags: Backpack or moneybelt
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: If you intend to walk a lot, take a good walking boots because you will face irrregular and dirty streets and irregular street borders. Cotton socks will be better to you.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Higienic paper and medical suppliers to prevent diarrhea and a general purpose antibiotic. (before leaving, give your medical supplies that you will not need to your hosts - they will need it more than you)
Photo Equipment: Take with you enough photo films because they are expensive in Cuba and it could be difficult to get the film you want there.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Sunscreen
Miscellaneous: Take with you earplugs if you will be in a "casa particular". Cubans can begin a salsa party at any moment ;)
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: - Definitely a good pair of walking sandals: you'll be walking for hours everyday.
- Comfy loose cotton clothing: the weather is very hot and humid
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: - toilet paper: other than your hotel bathroom, you won't be able to find them anywhere else.
Miscellaneous: - Bottle carrier: you'll need a large bottle of water to survive the heat, but it'll be too heavy to carry it around just with your hands.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: When using bathrooms in most restaurants in Havana you will either not find toilet paper and in some cases running water in the bathroom. Bring along enough toilet paper for the day and you might even want to bring along some Wet Ones or some of that antibacterial waterless cleaner.
Do not be surprised if the bathrooms are a bit scary compared to our standards.
Luggage and bags: Don't need to take heavy bags, here with little backpack or small handbag U're done. U don't need clothes to protect form cold or anything like that
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Be sure to take, some shorts, bath suit, comfortable shoes (maybe a pair of sandals), maybe u'll need an umbrella if u come in summer time, lot of rain can catch u in the street.
Photo Equipment: Don't forget you camera! Here U'll find beatifull places to take pictures and of course, take some photographic rolls with u, here they're expensive.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Mosquito Repellent!!! Mosquito Repellent!!! Mosquito Repellent!!! don't even forget that if you're planing to stay in a camping.
Luggage and bags: TRAVEL LIGHT!!!!
Havana is HOT and Humid. Do not take anything you do not need, just what you can fit in a backpack.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Light weight clothing, a showerproof jacket and a sun/rain hat. It rained every afternoon that I was in Havana (July-August 2001). Clothing that dries quickly would be really useful.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Take a medical kit. Cuba has planty of hospitals, and you will be seen and dealt with promptly. However, due to the shortage of international currency (and the US blockade!), needles, syringes are re-used! Although they are undoubtably sterile, they can be rather blunt.
LOADS OF mosquitto repellant!!!! And vinegar to treat the bites with.
Photo Equipment: A manual camera would be best, as recharging could be a problem. Batteries are not easy to find and are expensive too. Digital camera users would have to take plenty of memory cards.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Mosquittos are a real problem outside the city. take plenty of Jungle Formula. Once that has run out, I have it from a local source that rubbing a halved apple on the skin will repell the pests. Once bitten, treat the bite with vinegar.
Miscellaneous: Anything that would be useful to Drs, Teachers etc. You can make a donation at any surgery, hospital or school. Even the most basic things like pens, pencils and paper will be appreciated
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Packets of gums are great tips in museums and hotels. So are dollar store make-up kits, nail polish & remover, manicure kits.
Miscellaneous: In my efforts to learn Spanish holistically, I started buying People En Espanol. I saved them all up, took them with us & gave them to various people - they loved them! This fast-food-literature of the gossipy/social/fashion kind, connected to the outside bright life, is very appreciated.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: A pair of confortable shoes, a pullover for the air conditioning, sunglasses. It's better if you wear long trousers and a t-shirt. Shorts and singlets without sleeves are good at the beach, but they can be unaccetable going around the city.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: All the medicines that you need.
Photo Equipment: Stock up on colour negative films. There is so much to photograph!!