Pastel hues, ’57 Chevys, neoclassical architecture — most of us imagine Cuba as a bubblegum-pink time capsule that smells like cigar smoke and coffee. And we want in.

Havana always steals the tourist spotlight, but to truly understand this destination, give yourself a week beyond the capital to explore the valleys of Viñales, Trinidad, and Veradero. Budget travel will be a bit more difficult than you probably realize — and there are other things you should know before you go, too, like how the island has two currencies or how toothpaste and WiFi is 100% pure luxury.

You’ll most certainly live differently here, but you’ll love the “Pearl of the Antilles” all the more for it. Especially once you try the rum.