"All-inclusive" and "Cuba" are definitely two words that are often used together. Many travelers come here to experience the hot weather and they like staying at the many resorts that this country has to offer. While that will be great, it would be a better idea to stay in the city of Havana instead.

According to Cuba Travel, this capital city has a population of more than 2 million, and the Havana Carnival happens in the summertime, which would be an awesome time to go.


But no matter what month you book your vacation, there are some reasons to choose Havana as your destination instead of going for a resort. Here is why a vacationer traveling to Cuba might want to stay in Havana (over an all-inclusive).

Stay In The Area Of Habana Vieja

If you go to Cuba and stay at an all-inclusive resort, it'll definitely be a nice time as there's nothing wrong with staying at a place right on the beach that probably has at least one or two pools. But it won't be quite the same as staying in Havana.

One reason to stay in Havana is you can choose the area of Habana Vieja. As Getting Stamped explains, "This is the colonial heart of the city with stunning architecture, open-air plazas, unique museums and so much more." Doesn't that sound like a cool place?!

People also love this area because there are town squares. One of them is called Old Square (Plaza Vieja) and while there are restaurants here, a reviewer on Trip Advisor mentions that there is a microbrewery that would be interesting to check out.

If you stayed at an all-inclusive, you might not be super close to Old Square, or you might not make it over there, so this is another reason that staying in Havana instead would work out super well.

You Can Try Local Restaurants Instead Of Resort Food

As someone posted on Trip Advisor about the food at all-inclusive resorts, "Some have a bit more variety with a higher star rating, but it is generally bland, lukewarm and as mentioned repetitive." If you choose to stay in Havana instead of booking an all-inclusive resort, you can try local restaurants instead of the resort food. And that will be a much nicer way to experience the culture.

According to The Monkeys Travel Group, you'll want to try Arroz con Pollo ("chicken rice") and Chiviricos (which the website calls "Fried Dough"). Try this rice dish at La Casona de 17 Restaurant as many Trip Advisor reviews say it's really good there, along with flan. You could also try this popular meal at Barriete Habana (and it looks so good, it would be fun to try it at two different restaurants). As for the Chiviricos, you can find these at street food stalls.

Speaking of street food...  Another great reason to stay in Havana as you can walk around and enjoy the various street food that the city has on offer. Travel Awaits mentions trying maduros (fried plantains) and churros. It's hard to say if you could try these foods at an all-inclusive as they might be on the menu or the food might be blander than that.

RELATED: How Much One Vacation Day In Cuba Costs (If You Don’t Stay At A Resort)

Stay At La Villa Teresa For Amazing Architecture

If you stay at an all-inclusive resort in Cuba, you'll miss out on a really great hotel: La Villa Teresa. This Trip Advisor review praises the old-fashioned architecture: "La Villa Teresa is nothing short of spectacular, especially given its location in one of the grittiest cities on the planet. The immaculately restored historic and antique-furnished villa is flawless top to bottom, complete with antique carrara marble throughout."

You'll be able to see the city super well from here, which will be a great experience. It's also likely that this hotel would offer a better view than a resort that might just overlook the beach.

It looks like an old-fashioned mansion from the outside and also has a pool and a place to eat breakfast. Booking.com says that this hotel is 7 km away from the Old Square, which is convenient. This hotel would definitely make your trip to Cuba memorable and would make for a more interesting location than an all-inclusive resort.

Booking a vacation to Cuba? Instead of staying at an all-inclusive resort, why not stay in Havana? You'll be close to the charming Old Square, can dine on local street food and try some dishes at restaurants, and stay in this really cool old hotel.

NEXT: 10 All-Inclusive Resorts In Cuba That Treat Guests Like Royalty (5 With Bad Reviews)