If you just have one week to discover Cuba I recommend not to overload it with activity and traveling all around wanting to see everything. Usually there are so many impressions you will need a little to process them, also you are on holiday, so relax a little!
Let me tell you: Cuba is bigger than most people think! Traveling around takes time and is not so fast and easy as it looks on a map.
If you just have a Week take time stay in Havana, go to beaches close by and maybe take a little trip to Viñales and discover some unique nature!
This what a possible trip like this could look like:
Arriving and orientating. Whatever you feel like. I suggest to visit or the neighborhood you stay in or the old town at the first day. On my tours I usually take people the first day to neighborhood their BnB is in, so they know how to get around.
Or take them to Habana Vieja (Old Havana) to visit the touristic sights and take them to part of old Havana where people actually life.
Time to discover another neigborhood of Havana. Like Centro Habana or the Vedado. There will an article about what to do in the different neighborhoods!
Take a break go to beach! Best way to go to the beaches around Havana is the Bus that leaves from the Parque Central in Old Havana, near the Capitol.
It charges 5CUC (there and back) leaves every 40 Minutes and has air condition. The last one back to city leaves the Beach Santa María at 6 p.m..
The Playas del Este are beautiful beaches with white sand and blue water. I recommend to go to Santa María and get off at the first stop of Santa María, there you can rent an umbrella for 2 CUC the whole day and don’t have to worry so much about loosing stuff.
Also very nice is Tarará, it is not that long and big as Santa María, but very well maintained.
You can also take a Taxi to the beaches. They charge about 15- 20 CUC.
Leaving for Viñales. Take some kind of Transportation and go to Viñales. If you have the possibility to stop on your way, you should also visit Soroa and/or Las Terrazas. Those are beautiful places with nature and interesting things to visit like the Orquidario in Soroa where you can see about 300 different types of orchids.
The trip tp Viñales takes about 2,5 hours.
In Viñales you can take a trip around the Vally and one visit different spots like Caves and other sights. I recommend the second one for the first day.
There is a bus taking tourist around wich costs 6 CUC. But taxis take you around for the same price and they are usually more willing to wait. You can also rent a bike.
There will be a separate post about Viñales soon. Also with recommendations of BnBs and places to eat.
Take trip around the valley. You can do that by hiking or by horse. Ask the owner of the BnB you stay in, they usually know somebody that can guide you around and explain plants and anything about the valley to you.
Prices for the basic tours are about 15 CUC – 25CUC per person and take about 2-4 Hours. You can also ask for longer hiking trips.
Head back to Havana in late afternoon/ evening.
Back in Havana I suggest take that day for visiting museums like Bellas Artes and The Revolution Museum.
If you are not into that cross the bay and visit the Christ Statue, Che Guevara’s House and the fortress.
If you have time left visit the Arts and Crafts Market in the port of Havana. It is amazing even if you don’t want to buy souvenirs.
Of course this is just a suggestion. You can structure your trip however you want. But if do not really know what to do in that time, this plan worked out for many of my clients.
If you are interested in doing a tour in Havana to learn more about it: http://www.indie-tours.de. Private tours are about 40 CUC per day (not per person).