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Havana Travel Guide, Cuba

Though tourism is in its awakening state in Cuba, you can chose from an abundance of activities, either on water or on land, that will add a little spice to your holiday. Most people are attracted by the wide range of opportunities Cuba offers in water sports, from fishing to snorkeling. Furthermore, from the huge variety of dry-land activities everyone can find something to their taste.

Those who are fond of fishing can try out deep-sea sport fishing for tuna, or other fishes on the coastline, and the Zapata Peninsula and Cayo Largo del Sur are just some of the best and least exploited- places for bone fishing! Renting boats is of course available. The resort and mountain lake of Hanabanilla is home for wide mouth and black bass.

You can have a great time sailing the crystalline waters of Cuba. Plenty of state-run marinas as Veradero, Santiago, Cayo Largo del Sur, offer you boats either for cruising for a week, or sailing for a day.

Although Cuba is not among the very leading surfing destinations, the waves and breaks all along the coastline (including Malecon, in Havana) and the relatively few people living with this exciting opportunity make surfing really enjoyable.

If you’re a baseball-fan, you can’t leave out watching a match. You won’t be disappointed, as the amateur players are considered some of the best in the world not to speak of premier players. Amid the numerous local teams, Pinar del Río, Santiago de Cuba, Santa Clara, Havana's Industriales are known as the best. A season runs from November to March, eventually to May. You have probably guessed by now that baseball is Cuba’s national sport, it’s a passion just like salsa.

You can also take biking-tours, the roads are generally well-maintained - Cubans regularly use bicycles for everyday transportation – but it is recommended to take organized trips and to bring your own bike.

You can keep yourself fit playing tennis as well, most of the palatial beach resorts have their own tennis courts, but it’s always better to check in advance! If you’re staying in Havana, it’s advisable to book a court at the Occidental Miramar.

Cuba is an excellent place for nature lovers! Besides amazingly preserved natural beauties to view and rock climbing, bird-watching will be a great experience: over 350 resident and migratory species can be observed here.

It is warmly recommended to do trips on your own! You can see more things and things that really interest you, needless to say: in your pace, if you go independently instead of choosing an organized tour. Going by taxi is a wise solution, as the taxi driver will know where is really worth going. Moreover, some short cuts through villages and the countryside will give you a startling image, like you were traveling back in time: chickens rambling freely on the streets, horses pulling carts with water, oxen pulling wooded ploughs - an odd picture of life for many.

However, if you are keen on watching the Dolphin and sea Lion show, an organized excursion is recommended.

Take Holguin Combo Tour: visit Holguin and see where the most famous handmade cigars in the world are made, take a ride on a steam locomotive from the last century, view the city from the heights of Loma de la Cruz, you won’t regret!

Of course you can just relax on the board of a catamaran, or have and adventure driving your own speed boat down the Sama River. Taking a Jeep Safari to Banes town, Cuba’s archaeological capital, plus visiting one of the best Indian village in the Caribbean will worth time.

You can be sure that the exciting activities you can find in Cuba will make your holiday more than enjoyable, it will be superb!


The capital, Havana City, set in Havana Province, is a place full with sightseeing attractions. The city is officially divided into 15 municipalities, but for touristic purposes we’d better distinguish six main areas: La Habana Vieja, Centro, Capitolio, Malecon, Vedado and Miramar.

La Habana Vieja is part of Old Havana, and the best way to see the colonial palaces, baroque churches and many other historical charms, is by foot. In Centro Habana you can see other beautiful historic sights including Capitolio - modeled after the domed Capitol of Washington D.C. -, Chinatown, Parque Central. The seaside Malecon, with the face of the fifties Havana, Miramar with its grand manses, Vedado, that reminds you of Manhattan and Miami, are all significant and worthwhile places to visit.

You can take Recorrido de la Ciudad, a complete tour around the main tourist sights of Havana, including Museo del Ron, Fundacion Havana Club, a tobacco factory, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, which houses Museo de la Ciudad, Old Havana’ s primal museum.

One of the most remarkable historical sights of Old Havana is the baroque Catedral de San Cristobal lying on Plaza de la Catedral.

Other famous places that you really should see are: Parque Histórico Morro y Cabaña, (with cannon blast ceremony at nights!); Centro Wifredo Lam, gallery and museum named for the great Cuban surrealist painter; Cementerio de Colón, a compelling collection of mausoleums, crypts, ornate gravestones, etc., and last but definitely not the least you can see the giant square where locals gather to hear Castro and other Communist party members: Plaza de la Revolucion.

Marina Hemingway is probably the most well-known and traditional marina, the scene of the world-famous Ernest Hemingway fishing tournament, offers fishing enthusiasts all kind off facilities from boat repairs to anti-cyclone waterways.

The monument of the great revolutionary hero Che Guevara, in Santa Clara, is a revered place by Cubans. A museum and a mausoleum with Guevara’s remains and tombstones of other revolutionaries are found here.

Cuba’s prettiest resort area is probably Guardalavaca, a really hot place, moreover, it’s situated in the midst of the most important archaeological zone of Native American groups in Cuba. Museo El Chorro de Maíta is site for the biggest and finest American Indian cemetery discovered in Cuba.

Trinidad is also a place you can’t leave out, especially if you’re fond of historical towns. The greatest collection of colonial architecture in the Americas is found here.

You can enjoy a relaxing time on one of the spectacular beaches: on the connected beaches of Playa Paraíso and Playa Sirena, with sparkling white sand and calmness, Playa Ensenachos and Playa Megano, a bit expansive but jaw-droppingly beautiful places, and Playa Ancón, close to Trinidad, offers a nice combination of sunbathing and colonial culture.

Cuba has plenty of natural attractions. You must see Sierra Maestra, the highest and longest mountain range in Cuba, the once hideout for Castro and his band, now it site for national parks. The Viñales Valley, surrounded by limestone karst hill formation, is the very place for hiking, mountain biking and exploring caves. Cayos Coco and Guillermo are tiny cays, separated from the mainland by a long man-made causeway, offer you amazingly unspoiled beaches. Similarly, Cayo Sabinal is an eco-tourist dreamland.

Las Terrazas, set in Sierra del Rosario Biosphere Reserve attracts nature lovers, and so does The Zapata Swamp National Park with its mangroves, swamps, wetlands and spectacular flora and fauna, plus Playa Larga. Parque Nacional Topes de Collantes has pine-covered mountains and refreshing waterfalls beckoning visitors.

Baracoa, the first settlement of Cuba, overlooking a beautiful oyster-shaped bay, remains a real natural paradise, it is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Cuba and its attractions offer such experiences that you won’t find anywhere, unique and unforgettable experiences!

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  • zangazangaLos Nardos Restaurant in Havana
    travel tip by zangazanga posted more then 30 days ago
    We had the most big and tasty meal of all our stay in the Los Nardos restaurant, situated opposite the Capitolio in Havana. The place is quite hidden (look for a neon sign and a doorman) but they serve the most delicious Spanish...
  • andra88The Old Havana (Habana Vieja)
    travel tip by andra88 posted more then 30 days ago
    As a legendary city, founded in 1519, the Old Havana is a glorious place to see if you travel to Cuba. The city's architecture is full of various styles of colonial, art-deco and eclectic and thus provides an amazing insight into it's...
  • lizzy_aLa Guarida Restaurant in Havana
    travel tip by lizzy_a posted more then 30 days ago
    We saw the La Guarida restaurant featuring in the Oscar nominated movie “Strawberry and Chocolate” and when we visited Havana, we had to go there and see it for ourselves. The restaurant is located on the third of a building which...
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