By Plane -- The Juan Gualberto Gómez International Airport (tel. 45/24-7015; airport code VRA) is located 18km (11 miles) west of Varadero, roughly midway between Matanzas and Varadero. Direct charter and scheduled commercial flights arrive in Varadero from Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Cancún, Nassau, Montego Bay, and most major European hubs. The major international carriers servicing Varadero include Air Canada, Air Europe, Condor, Martinair, Monarch, Edelweiss, Sobelair, Lauda Italia, Air Lib, Eurofly, Corsair, Star Airlines, Sky Service, and LTU. A taxi between the airport and Varadero costs CUC$25. If you coincide with a Víazul departure, it will cost you CUC$6 to the bus station and an additional CUC$2 on another Víazul bus to your hotel. Cubana (tel. 45/61-1823) has an office at Av. 1 at Calle 55. Aerocaribbean (tel. 45/61-1470) is based at Av. 1 at Calle 23.
By Bus -- Víazul (tel. 7/881-1413 in Havana, or 45/61-4886 in Varadero; www.viazul.com) has four buses daily for Varadero, leaving Havana at 8am, 10am, noon, and 6pm. The trip takes 3 hours to Varadero. The return buses for Havana leave Varadero at 8am, 11:25am, 3:30pm, and 6pm. The fare is CUC$10 each way. Víazul also has a daily bus from Varadero to Trinidad via Santa Clara leaving at 8:15am (6 hr.; CUC$20 each way). The bus to Trinidad via Cienfuegos leaves at 2:55pm (4 hrs; CUC$20). The return buses leaves at 9am and 2:50pm. The bus to Santiago leaves at 9:25pm (15 hr.; CUC$49 each way). The return bus leaves Santiago at 8pm. The bus station is located at Calle 36 and the Autopista del Sur.
In addition, most of the hotels and tour agencies in Havana can arrange transportation on periodic transfer buses to Varadero, including a pickup at your hotel. In a similar vein, all of the hotels and tour agencies in Varadero can book you on similar buses heading back to the hotels and airport in Havana. The fare is CUC$25 to CUC$35 each way.
By Car -- Varadero is connected to Havana by a modern, four-lane, coastal highway, the Vía Blanca, that begins as you exit the tunnel connecting Habana Vieja with Habana del Este. It's a straightforward, scenic drive to Matanzas. The highway then threads its way through Matanzas, generally hugging close to the coast, and continues on the final 40km (25 miles) to Varadero. About 13km (8 miles) outside of Varadero there's a tollbooth (CUC$2 per vehicle each way). The trip generally takes around 2 hours. A taxi from Havana to Varadero costs around CUC$80-CUC$100; a taxi from Matanzas/Cárdenas costs around CUC$20.