Eastwards, less than half an hour from the city centre, through the bay tunnel, lie several beaches of fine sand, stretching for 9 km: Bacuranao, El Mégano, Santa María del Mar, Boca Ciega and Guanabo. Tourist accommodation and facilities of various types are dotted along the coast.
This French heritage city, called the Pearl of Southern Cuba, is famed for its beautiful architecture and how it blends in with the natural surroundings of the bay it hugs and the nearby Sierra del Escambray mountains.
The city’s earliest part is a special place where the colonial architecture and layout are preserved. Nestled next to a beautiful bay, it’s known for its welcoming squares, promenades along the sea, restaurants serving typical Creole dishes, busy bars and cafés playing traditional Cuban music as well as museums, art galleries and shops selling local craftwork.
Havana Cathedral is one of the most important examples of colonial architecture in the Caribbean and Latin America. Its unique style blending together European heritage and Creole influences has turned it into a highly prized building that has been visited by dignitaries of the Catholic Church.
The city’s first fortifications are still preserved today in perfect condition. Particularly of interest is its peculiar moat, the collection of historically valuable objects and a striking view of the entrance to Havana Bay.
One of the iconic places in Old Havana is undoubtedly this small restaurant, the home of the famous Cuban mojitos; visiting here to try the most delicious flavours of Creole cuisine is a must. Thousands of visitors have left their signature on its walls while enjoying the constantly cheerful atmosphere that reigns here.
This charming bar in Old Havana was immortalised by the US writer Ernest Hemingway, who used to go there to drink one of the most exquisite and refreshing cocktails they prepare: Daiquiri. Since then Floridita has become known as the home of the Daiquiri.
This unusual museum next to Havana Bay will explain the long historical and cultural process that led to the making of the most famous Cuban rums. Ranging from the work performed by slaves in the mill to produce cane sugar in the 19th century to the most contemporary blending and ageing processes, the route is full of authentically Cuban aromas and flavours.
The city’s port is one of the areas most steeped in history. A wealthy trade emporium during the colonial era, the target of corsairs and pirates and invaded by English troops, its waters, quays and walls hold legends that locals and visitors are eager to discover.
The outcome of a community project, the Callejón de los Peluqueros, or Hairdressers’ Alley, is an original bazar of local businesses, restaurants and bars with a unique atmosphere. On the edge of Old Havana, it’s a perfect place to discover the peace and quiet of the famous Ángel quarter.
The long wall running along the coast for almost seven kilometres is certainly one of the most representative areas in Havana. This waterfront promenade affords impressive views of the city and the sea from the bay entrance to the River Almendares. Both during the day and at night, it’s a place where people get together and also a traditional part of the carnival route.
Old Havana is brimming with galleries and the workshops of well-known artists and the promising young talent of Cuban art. The Experimental Graphics Workshop, the Servando Cabrera Silk-Screen Printing Workshop, the Wifredo Lam Contemporary Art Centre, the Visual Art Development Centre and the Carmen Montilla Gallery provide a rich canvas of visual arts in Cuba.
This cultural project has become one of the most important spaces on Havana’s cultural scene in recent years. Galleries, stages for concerts and theatrical productions, fashion shows, screening of films and documentaries are just some of the options you can find in an old oil factory repurposed by Cuban artists.
This popular park is the city’s hub. The starting point of the Paseo del Prado avenue, it is surrounded by important buildings, such as the Gran Teatro de La Habana, the National Museum of Fine Art, iconic hotels and boulevards, such as the streets Obispo and San Rafael.
One of the most famous of the many popular bars that Havana was known for in the 1950s. Its elegant wooden counter and music turned it into the favourite hangout of prominent musicians and cultural figures.
This building is one of the most essential symbols of the Art Deco architectural movement in Cuba. Its exclusive and exquisite design make it a real work of art whose highlights are its glass and iron work.
The former Presidential Palace is one of the colonial city’s major museums. It has a valuable collection of items and testimonies linked to the birth and development of the Cuban Revolution in the mid-20th century.
Two imposing buildings, one dedicated to universal art and the other exclusively to Cuban art, form the National Museum of Fine Art, which brings together notable international collections and the best visual arts in Cuba.
One of the standout experiences you can have in Havana is learning how authentic Cuban cigars are made. The island’s best tobacco is taken to these world-famous factories and turned into the different shapes and aromas of the cigar brands Cohíba, Montecristo and Romeo y Julieta, to name a few.
This community project led by the Cuban artist José Fúster has transformed the life and ambience of Jaimanitas, a coastal district in the outskirts of Havana. Houses and public spaces full of colour deliver an unusual experience in this city.
This long street goes through the modern district of Miramar, an extension of the city after crossing over the River Almendares. Besides its splendid central avenue, it offers exclusive restaurants, bars, shopping areas and the hotels in the western part of the city.
One of the most significant places in the history of Cuba in the past 60 years is the Plaza de la Revolución square in Havana. This place for gatherings, parades and marches has been the setting for the most momentous speeches made by the island’s political leaders as well as major concerts, cultural and sport events. The José Martí Memorial and the magnificent view from the highest vista point in the city are some of its other attractions.
This is the largest cemetery in the Caribbean area. Its sculptures and environmental design have turned it into a highly-prized reference of Cuban heritage. Some of the country’s famous historical and cultural figures are buried here.
Havana’s ice cream parlour is one of the capital’s must-visit places. Here locals and residents come together in a setting that is another reference of modern Cuban culture on one of the city’s busiest streets.
Located between Old Havana and Vedado, this project pays homage to the African heritage of Cuban culture. Folk music and dance groups delight visitors with typical Afro Cuban dances and songs in a colourful setting full of sound.
This amazing castle, whose lighthouse is one of Havana’s symbolic images, rises up on the eastern side of the bay. Initially designed to protect the port entrance, today it guides vessels and houses a valuable collection of military items dating from colonial times.
The largest fortification in Havana has a rich history and today it’s the home of major events such as the International Book Fair and the Havana Biennial of Plastic Art. The famous cannon fire at nine at night takes place on its walls.
One of the most popular natural destinations in Cuba, Viñales captivates visitors with its beauty and peace and quiet.
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Enjoy the difference exceptional makes when you experience luxury in Cuba. Elegant city hotels and fantastic beach resorts in Havana, Varadero, Cayo Santa María, Holguín and Santiago de Cuba with all the amenities, utmost comfort and excellence that characterises Meliá Hotels International.
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