I usually object to layovers because I prefer to quickly arrive at my destination. I have recently begun to see the benefits of having a layover while traveling. It allows you the opportunity to see multiple cities/countries in one trip. Can you believe that some airports offer free layover tours?
When visiting other countries, I prefer to see the culture and hang out with the locals. They often know the best places to eat, things to do and it allows you to learn more about the place you are visiting from there perspective. I planned tours and activities but the greatest time spent in Cuba was spending time with Cubans.