Things to do in Havana

Things to do in Havana
Things to do in Havana

In many ways, Havana is a traveler’s dream, not least because difficulty getting to Cuba can make the place take on an almost-otherworldly aura. Lively, visually stunning, and politically fascinating, Havana is the administrative seat of this Caribbean island. Things to do in Havana are plentiful, with Havana attractions covering the full range of tourist sites and local gems. Of course, just walking around this beguiling city characterized by marvelous architecture, 1950s Cadillacs, and a sheer absence of advertisements is one of the top activities in Havana in itself. Once you're accustomed to the look and spirit of the city, you'll find that the there are plenty of things to do in Havana to fill any vacation.

Old Havana

Old Havana
Old Havana

The area of Old Havana is an atmospheric treat. A UNESCO-recognized area, it includes many of the top Havana attractions such as La Cabana fortress, the Museum of the Revolution (found in the former Presidential Palace), the Capitolio Nacional, and the Castillo del Morro, which guards the entrance to Havana Bay. Old Havana is where you’ll find the city’s most inspiring colonial architecture, not to mention many of the best dining, drinking, and dancing spots in the city.

Malecon

Malecon Havana
Malecon Havana

This seawall and promenade called "El Malecon" stretches for five miles, running adjacent to glorious Havana Bay. During the day it's the perfect place for a relaxing stroll, especially during sunrise and sunset, while at night one of the popular activities in Havana is to head to the wall with a bottle of something and meet friends for a drink. With Havana as its backdrop, such gatherings are a great way to get to know the city and its people.

Museum of the Revolution

Cuba’s history is, of course, unique, and the fresh-faced vacationer just arrived in the country will find a visit to the Museum of the Revolution to be one of the most interesting and helpful things to do in Havana. Exhibits here concentrate the revolution of the 1950s, when Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, and their group of revolutionaries overthrew the ruling dictatorship headed by Fulgencio Batista. Visitors to this museum, which is undoubtedly one of the top Havana attractions, are also treated to exhibits on pre-revolutionary Cuba, such as one that tells of its War of Independence with Spain.

Vedado

The centrally located district of Vedado has a vibrant collection of hotels, restaurants, bars, and clubs. While here, make sure to take time out to soak up the atmosphere of the Plaza de la Revolucion, which is one of the largest town squares in the world.

Beaches

While Havana Bay is not blessed with much sand, there are many awesome beaches in Cuba, and some of them are within an easy distance of the capital itself. The beach most frequented by tourists is Santa Maria del Mar, where you’ll find appealing, if a bit crowded, sand and plenty of amenities. Playa Guanabo is less congested and, at a fifteen-minute drive from the city, is easily accessible. A few miles farther along, Mar Azul Beach is a beautifully untouched and peaceful spot. These beaches provide many fun activities in Havana such as water sports and beach volleyball.

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