When you arrive in Havana you feel like you have stepped into a time warp, there are no fast food chains or amusement parks - what you get is 100% Cubano from the 900 plus landmarks to the cameo buses and vintage cars.
It will take you more than one trip to Havana to see all it has to offer.
There are an abundance of castles, cathedrals, museums and Plazas to see each one more beautiful than the next. In Habana Vieja (old Havana) you will find the Presidential Palace, Cathedral Square and Hemingway’s La Bodeguita del Medio. The cobblestone streets are lined with unique art galleries, buildings and Cuban women smoking cigars.
You will also find bars and restaurants on every corner with live bands to serenade you while you enjoy a cool drink and if the mood takes you, which it probably will, have a dance too.
In central Havana you will find one of Cuba’s oldest cigar factories, Tabacos Partagas as well as the Capitolio. The fort, El Morro, is always well worth a visit as the view from the top is nothing short of spectacular especially at sunset when the canons are fired.
If that’s not enough you have some of the best dance schools and companies based in Havana from ballet to Afro Cuban folkloric.
The waterfront of Havana known as el Malecon is stunning. During the day you can walk and walk admiring the architecture, parks, monuments and most of all, the ocean whilst taking advantage of cooling sea breezes. If you want to take a break you can grab a bite to eat and a drink along the way or even stop at the one of Cuba’s most beautiful hotels, Hotel Nacional. At night the balmy weather brings out the tourists and locals alike and you get a completely different experience. Now it’s the sound of music, laughter, singing and what you see are people dancing and having fun. The combination delights your senses and produces an energy that invigorates your soul. If you tire of walking there are always coco taxis to be found which are a cool way to get around.
If you haven’t already worked it out, Cuba’s love of music and dance is everywhere! You can dance whenever and wherever, from the many bars and restaurants along the streets to the nightclubs including Casa de la Musica where live Cuban bands play matinee sessions as well evening you can get your fill of the best Cuban music and dance to your hearts content. If you want to dance under the stars then head to1830 or Marina Hemingway. If you’re lucky you may even come across a street party and if you do, don’t be surprised if the locals ask you to join in. If Rumba is more your thing then go to Palenque, Callejon del jamel,Las vegas orPalacio de la rumba where you will be blown away by this very sensual dance.
Havana is a city not to be missed but beware you may not want to leave...