Escape the whirlwind of Havana with a day or two of horseback riding in western Cuba. Drive west into Pinar del Río Province. You’ll need a good map to avoid missing the turnoff for Las Terrazas — an experimental rural community with artists’ studios and nature trails. Your ultimate destination is Viñales, a delightful village that is a good starting-off point for your horseback adventure. Horseback riding options in this area are plentiful, and you’ll cover more ground on horseback than on foot. The scenery through these peaceful, rural communities is amazing. The Viñales Valley is known for its mogotes—fantastic limestone hillocks that rise up like the backs of gigantic beasts from the valley floor. In fact, the Hotel Los Jazmines is actually perched atop a mogote, with stunning views (try for a room in the original building) and delicious meals. Casas particulares – rooms for rent in private homes - are also a great option, and a good way to get to know the locals. Ask your host to recommend a guide for your trek or book from a local tour agency.