The best places to explore in Havana Cuba
Cuba’s fair capital is one of the most up and coming tourist destinations of 2016, in part thanks to the recent trade negotiations with the USA. Whether you’re looking to go sunbathing on the beach, brush up on your history, or sample some local rum, Havana offers something for everyone.
There’s lots set to change in the next few years, with Cuba Holidays reporting that US President Obama will be visiting soon to cement diplomatic relations. If you’re looking to follow in his footsteps, these are the best places to explore in Havana.
Playas de Este
If you’re looking to make the most of the hot Caribbean sun, take the bus or a vintage cab down to Playas de Este for the afternoon. Often heralded as one of the nicest Cuban beaches and one of the most beautiful places in Cuba, this quiet beach has soft sand and shallow turquoise waters ideal for sunbathing and splashing about with the kids. Grab a snack from the Paladars established by locals for a taste of homemade Cuban fare, or head to one of the salsa bars for a drink and a dance in the evening.
In the centre of Havana’s exquisite Old Town is the Plaza Vieja, a city square full of stunning architecture and tasty food outlets. If you’re looking to get your bearings, have a wander around the square and take in the fantastic sights and smells, with bars and food outlets housed in eclectic colonial era buildings. A trip up the Camera Obscura is well worth the 2CUC entry fee, which includes a presentation about the camera and the breathtaking views of the city.
There are as many museums in Havana as there are subjects of interest, so it’s easy to find something that takes your fancy. To get an insight into Cuba’s turbulent political past, head on down to the Museo del Revolucion for a permanent exhibition explaining the state of Cuban politics from the early 1900s to the present day. If you’re an arts lover, the National Gallery showcases work from national artists from the 17th century to today, while the National Museum of Music traces the African and Latin influences on Cuban salsa we know and love. Fancy something different? The Cigar Museum, Car Museum, and the Havana Club Rum Museum show the background of some of the country’s biggest talking points.
Jardin Botanico Nacional
For a bit of peace and quiet in a lush natural setting, look no further than the Botanical Gardens. Maintained by the University of Havana, the 600 hectare garden is home to a diverse range of indigenous and global plant life, including a fantastic collection of trees. It’s great for a picnic or a quiet walk in the sun, but a ride on the tractor train is the best way to see the whole park.
Check out also 41 reasons to visit Cuba as Havana is just one of them 🙂