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Whether you like it or not, Camila Cabello’s hit song Havana has probably been stuck in your head all summer. But what does the catchy Cuban capital actually have to offer travellers?

Havana is a heart-throb. Its rich colonial history, weathered beauty and surprisingly contemporary art scene has put the Caribbean’s most populous city at the top of many travel lists in recent years. This, combined with the infectious energy that pulses through each salsa bar, has helped it effortlessly capture the hearts of experience-seeking tourists from all over the globe.

Still searching for a reason to travel there? Here are 5 ways Cuba’s wonderfully worn city will win you over from day one.


There's 500 years of history to discover

Founded by the Spanish in the 16th century, Havana and its streets are layered with history. From crumbling colonial squares and buildings to the cobbled plazas and frescoed churches of Old Havana, the city’s elaborate past and revolutionary spirit is evident wherever you go.

You can absorb this history by simply strolling the streets or wandering around Revolution Square: the host of many political rallies. Or, you can dip into the Revolution Museum and learn in-depth about the country’s former communist leader, Fidel Castro’s, rise to power!

Revolution Square


...but it has a modern side too!

Havana may be most famous for its history, but the city is establishing a reputation for creativity too. Partly expressed through a growing collection of art museums and galleries, and partly through a selection of bohemian cafes and lounge bars selling cosmopolitan cocktails, Havana is reinventing itself as a city not afraid to experiment.

Pay a visit to the elegant district of Miramar and witness the other side of Havana; admire the avant-garde work of Cuba’s art community in the Museum of Fine Arts; and stop off at the famous bar of El Floridita, one of Ernest Hemingway’s favourite haunts.


Morro-Cabañas may be the most impressive fort you’ve ever seen

This historic park of forts, battlements, and barracks was responsible for the protection of Havana for centuries. Made up of two towering forts, a lighthouse and a military bastion that offers spectacular panoramic views over the city, the third largest fort complex in the Americas needs to be seen to be appreciated!

Head up here before sunset and watch the sun sink below the horizon.


There’s a walking tour’s worth of street art to be seen

The art here isn’t restricted to living in museums; ever since street artist JR and Cuban American artist José Parla painted the faces of 25 Cuban senior citizens onto the city walls for Havana’s Biennial art fair in 2012, street art has been spreading across the city.

You can find the art yourself, or book yourself a street art tour which will take you around all the sights.


You'll be welcomed in with music and a friendly smile

For many, Havana's star attraction are its people. Warm-hearted, open and always up for a chat, Habaneros are some of the most sincere people you'll ever meet. Add to this the locals' infectious passion for rhythms that get your hips swaying, and you have an unbeatable combination of friendliness and fun! 

Should you find yourself inexorably pulled towards the pulsating bars and clubs, don't be afraid to let the music move you; dancing is a way of life here!

Are you ready to fall in love with Havana? Join us on our 7-night Discovery trip to Cuba, departing in May and October 2019, or browse our full selection of holidays to Cuba here.


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