3 Days in Havana

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Things to do

3 days in, the city that once was described as the "Paris of the Latin World". Before the fifties La Habana was the playground of the Rich and Famous.
It was the era of Julio Lobo, the richest Sugar baron, and the many hotels and casinos controlled by Meyer Lansky and the mafia, the days that billionaire Irenee Dupont de Nemours, lived on her private domain and famous artists such as Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Louis Amstrong and others performed in the city.

Havana is a facinating city with beautiful buildings in decay but also wonderful renovations carried out with the support of the UNESCO World Heritage program.
Three days is a short period to discover the city, so you best focus on Habana Veija (the Old City) where the major tourist attractions are. Havana tourist bus - Parque Central Havana Cuba

The first Day

The city visit start at Parque Central, this is a large square that separates the Old City and Central Havana. In the middle of the park you see a large statue of José Marti, the National Hero of Cuba.
José Marti points with his finger to Old Havana, follow the direction to the corner of Obispo street and Avenida de Belgica.
At your righthand side you see the popular Hemingway hangout
"El Floridita"
with overpriced daiquiri's.
Follow Obispo street, it's the main shopping street in Old Havana, with restaurants, bars, shops. Discover great bars like "Lluvia de Oro" and "La Casa del Escabeche".
Mark along the right side, hotel Ambos Mundos, where Hemingway stayed but also Farmacia Taquechel and the bakery San José near the hotel.
At the end of Obispo street at your left you see the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, the it was once the residence of the Spanish military leaders. In front of you the nice "Plaza de Armas" with the second hand bookshops.
Make a stroll to the nearby Plaza de la Catedral, Plaza de San Fransico de Asis and follow Brasil street to Plaza Veija (Old square). This place is a marvel and an wonderful example what renovation can do to an old square.
The renovation is funded by the Unesco World Heritage fund. A must is a visit to Taberna La Muralla (at the corner) here you can drink the best beer in town, straight from their own brewery, they also serve great snack for lunch.
Visit the nearby Avenida del Puerto and the street market near Plaza de la Catedral.
Time for a mojito in the bar Dos Hermanos (Two Brothers) that claims to be the oldest bar in Havana.

Tip

Hungry? Avoid street food, the hygiene is not always at its best. Recommended cheap restaurants are Lluvia de Oro and Restaurant Europa both with life music and located in Obispo street. A great place to spend a lazy afternoon is the terrace of the hotel Inglaterra at Parque Central, with excellent mojito's and snacks!

The Second day

We start again at Parque Central now going to the left side you see the Capitolio, an exact copy of the Capitol in Washington, at the intersection of Amistad and Dragones streets you will find the Bario Chino, once the largest China town in Latin America. Return to Parque Central at the right side you will find the Paseo del Prado, a great promenade heading to the sea and the Havana Malecon.

A little further you find the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, and the Museo de la Revolucion with the Granma Memorial and the Russian missiles used during the Cuba crisis.

Tip

It has been alot of walking, so what about a lazy afternoon at one of the beautiful beaches? You can do this by taxi (20-25 USD single trip) but I recommend the the Havana tourist bus. Departure in front of the hotel Inglaterra (at Parque Central - see picture above) There are three different city tours, be sure to be on the right tour....heading to ALAMAR (Playa MarAzul) The bus fare is 10 Cuc and the ticket is valid during one day (return included)
Nightlife tip:
You can book a ticket to the Havana Tropicana Cabaret. It's recommended to book a trip, transport included, taxis are not always available after the show.
An other option is a hot salsa dancing night at the Casa de la Musica at Galiano street in the town center

Holidays in Cuba

The Third day

Visit to the tourist attractions in the Vedado district. The places of interest are the University, the cine Yara and the ice parlour Coppelia, at the 23th street, the Cementerio Colon, Plaza de la Revolucion, with the José Marti statue and Che Guevara Memorial.

Tip

Enjoy a lazy afternoon in the beautiful garden bar of the hotel Nacional de Cuba along the Malecon sea wall, with wonderful sea views, while sipping your mojito.
Dream away on the sound of the life music band.
48 hours in Havana Cuba

Taxi's are waiting for you!

Cuba Vacation - Havana Cruise

Happy Cruises company offers a great 8 days promotion cruise in the Caribbean starting at Cancun Mexico. The trips include a 3 days stay in Havana Cuba (day 5,6 and 7)and return to Cozumel (Mexico).


Cost of living

  • Hotel rates range from the cheap Hotel Deauville (55 USD - 39 Euro) up to 215 USD (standaard room) in the luxury Saratoga hotel (five star)
  • Prizes for Casa particular or private rooms for rent start at 20 Cuc up to 40 Cuc in the better situated Havana Vedado or Miramar districts.
  • Cheap meals (5 - 8 Cuc/ person) can be found in the restaurants in Obispostreet (Lluvia de Oro and Restaurant Europa etc.) The paladar (private) restaurants serve meals at 15 - 25 Cuc. We recommend La Guarida, but El Aljibe and La maison are also great.
  • The average price for cocktails (Daiquiri, mojito, cuba libre ) is 3 Cuc, except in the tourist bars (the Hemingway haunts and major tourist hotels were 4 - 5 Cuc is a normal price. Beer and soft drinks in a bar will sell for
    2-3 Cuc (shop price 1.25 -1.50 Cuc)
  • Taxi's - an average ride (5-6km) will cost you 6-7 Cuc, roughly one Cuc per km, tip not included. Always discuss the price before.
    Enjoy your Cuba experience!

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