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Havana Sights

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Calle Paseo y Ave. Independencia. Plaza de la Revolución. La Habana, Avenida Paseo, La Habana, Cuba

Plaza de la Revolución, one of the most iconic, politically important sites in Havana, dates back only as far as the 20th century (it was begun under President Batista and completed in 1959, the year Fidel Castro came to power). The large...

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Calle 17, La Habana, Cuba

Havana’s tallest edifice may seem diminutive if you live or spend a lot of time in other big cities, but when it opened in 1956, the 39-story FOCSA Building was a sensation, a marvel of construction and technology that heralded a building...

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Calle Industria, La Habana, Cuba

Even nonsmokers can enjoy a cigar factory tour; after all, the habano is one of the island’s most important exports. The tour, given in one of several languages (including English), takes you directly to the floor where workers roll cigars...

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458 Paseo de Martí, La Habana 10600, Cuba

Havana’s Grand Theater earned its name with its immense size and opulent interiors. It is now fresh off a two-year, inside-out renovation that restored it to its early 20th-century neobaroque beauty. Try to catch a performance of the...

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Dragones, La Habana, Cuba

It may surprise some visitors, but many Latin American cities have a Chinatown, or Barrio Chino, typically dating back to the country's abolition period, when African slave labor was replaced by Chinese workers. Havana’s Chinese-Cuban...

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Travelers who can confidently get around on two wheels can rent bikes from Vélo Cuba, a woman-owned and -run shop and garage. The outfit offers independent rentals for DIY explorations or an itinerary through the Vedado or Old Havana...

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Centro and La Habana Vieja, Malecón, La Habana, Cuba

One of the most popular ways to experience Havana is also one of the most memorable: by cruising around in a chauffeured Chevy, Ford or other American car from the 1950s. Dozens of drivers wait for travelers eager to settle into the carefully...

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Havana, Cuba

Like many port cities in the Caribbean, Havana has an intact, centuries-old defense fort that is open to the public for sightseeing. Construction of the building, commonly called El Morro (its longer official name is Castillo de los Tres Reyes...

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The triumph of the Cuban Revolution was a victory for Cuban athletes: Fidel Castro viewed sports (along with arts and education) as an essential part of public life and invested heavily in athletic training programs. From boxing and baseball to...

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Havana, Cuba

Havana’s massive Fine Arts Museum has a little bit of everything. Not surprisingly, there’s a strong Cuban art collection with pieces ranging across a variety of styles, media and eras (from the colonial to contemporary). Perhaps more...

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Havana, Cuba

Visitors interested in Afro-Cuban music, dance, and culture inevitably find their way to Callejón de Hamel, an alley in the Centro Habana neighborhood whose colorful paintings and mosaics make it easy to locate. Each Sunday at noon, locals...

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Avenida Paseo, La Habana, Cuba

Cuba’s nueva trova genre reached prominence at roughly the same time as the heyday of American folk music, and the same kinds of conscience-stirring lyrics defined the form. Some of the best-known nueva trova singers launched their careers...

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San Ignacio, La Habana, Cuba

Named for one of Cuba’s most famous modern artists, this cultural center presents exhibitions of contemporary art from Cuba, the Caribbean, Latin America, Asia and Africa. Its permanent collection consists of about 1,000 works. In addition...

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Central, La Habana, Cuba

Not for anyone in a big hurry, the Hershey Train—named for and built in the 1920s by the Hershey Chocolate company to transport workers and sugar—is an odd relic from prerevolutionary Cuba. The train takes about three hours to cover...

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Calle 26, La Habana, Cuba

This trendy, newish spot in Havana’s Vedado neighborhood started by Cuban music star X Alfonso is housed within a former factory and has something for everyone who loves creativity. Move from room to room to get a taste of photography and...

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entre N y O, Avenida 23, La Habana, Cuba

This (literally) underground jazz club is one of Cuba’s finest in terms of musical performances in the genre, though the venue itself is a bit worn from the years. But had you shown up for a show during the golden age of jazz, you’d...

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Havana, Cuba

Inaugurated in 1989 by none other than Fidel Castro, Cuba’s National Botanical Garden showcases more than 4,000 plant species, with much of the flora native to the island. Special sections feature aquatic plants, ornamentals and unusual...

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Havana, Cuba

It may not look like much from the outside, but take a peek at the current cartelera (performance listing) and you’ll get a sense of how important this recently renovated venue is as the stage for a veritable who’s who of Cuban salsa...

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Havana, Cuba

It’s a barbershop, it’s an art project, it’s a historical museum. Papito’s Arte Corte is a little bit of everything. Barber-proprietor-curator Gilberto Valldares, also known as Papito, runs this quaint spot in Old Havana,...

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Finca Vigía Km. 12 ½, La Habana, Cuba

Getting there requires a bit of a haul beyond Havana proper, but Hemingway aficionados won’t want to leave a visit to Finca Vigía off their agenda. Hemingway’s Havana-outskirts hideaway is quite a spread, and while you...