Rhythmical, colorful, vibrant and intense, Cuba's capital Havana opens its doors and invites visitors from all parts of the world to discover its long-standing traditions, history and culture. All life’s ingredients combine in this tropical magnetic city. Even its name evokes images of antique cars, splendid cigars, rum, music, colored architecture, and most of all, warm and hospitable people.

Baptized as "San Cristóbal de la Habana" the villa was founded on November 16th, 1519 and soon it became one of the first major colonial cities of the New World. Havana played an important role in the Atlantic trade between west and east and developed into a key commercial center for the Spanish Empire. At Old Havana visitors are constantly reminded of this fact with the elaborate colonial architecture and impressive fortresses that are dotted around the city, with nostalgic echoes of its earlier days.

In the early 20th century, the capital grew then to the rhythm of new times and styles. The colonial style gave way to a modern city with lots of commerce, banks, clubs, hotels, hospitals, casinos and beautiful neighborhoods such as Vedado, Miramar, Nuevo Vedado, Kohly, and "Casino Deportivo", all of them characterized by their beautiful residential mansions. Important buildings of the time stand out and have lasted despite the years. 

Today Havana is the cultural, scientific, economic and political heart of the country, as well as the most cosmopolitan city and the most demanded destination in Cuba.

Exploring Havana is always an adventure as visitors immerse themselves into the rich culture and history that adorns every corner of the city’s streets. The Havana nights are very colorful and exquisite. Music and dance to the Cuban rhythms are capable of enchanting and attracting all that love the sounds. There are many musical genres that you can enjoy while in here: Danzon, Son, Salsa, Cha Cha Cha, Mambo, Latin Jazz, Bolero, Feelin, Afro Cuban music, Spanish and Flamenco, fusion music, meringue, cumbia and much more. Countless number of places will serve as scene for enjoyment of live cuban music which will be an unforgettable experience.

Havana has been the venue of many fairs and international events and the birthplace of famous painters, writers and musicians, glory of the Cuban culture. Museums, theatres and concert halls, art galleries and cultural institutions are popular venues, while some—such as the National Ballet of Cuba, House of the Américas, Foundation of New Latin American Film and National Folkloric Dance Group—have won international acclaim.

Havana is different, is unique, is vibrant. This stunning city-colonial, modern, classic, eclectic, quiet, tumultuous and glamorous-is a one life experience.

Declared by UNESCO in 1986 as a World Heritage Site, Old Havana's historic center is a majestic place with sophisticated architecture, narrow streets, elegant plazas, colossal palaces and beautiful avenues, exquisites interior patios, stain glass windows. Gorgeous intimate hotels, museums, live music, bars, restaurants, paintings, craft works, old books and much more can be found along the streets framed by colonnade arcades.

Old Havana has some 140 buildings dating back to the 16th and 17th century and another 200 to the 18th century and over 460 from the 19th making up a mixture of attractions for all demanding tastes. This site conserves distinctive features like the famous Prado Avenue and the well known Alameda de Paula, which was constructed during the second half of the 18th century, both famous at the time.

This centennial place hosts some of the best places in Havana. We suggest you to visit:

The Cathedral Square with neo-classic interiors and its marvelous baroque architecture.

Capitanes Generales Palace the former headquarters of the colonial governments. Today this building homes the City Museum.

El Templete linked with the tradition of the first town hall while the first mass was held on November 16th, 1519, when the villa was founded.

Morro-Cabaña tourist complex Two ruins mark this important historical fortress: El Castillo de los “Tres Reyes del Morro” (Three Kings of El Morro Castle), built in 1630, and the fortress of  "San Carlos de la Cabaña", erected in 1774.

The Real Fuerza Castle (1577) exhibits the most important pottery art collection in the island. The building’s tower is crowned by "La Giraldilla", an artistic wind vane that has become a symbol of the city.

The Basilica of Saint Francis of Assisi and the Paula Church Cultural Centers specialized in ancient, classical music and fine arts.

San Francisco de Assísi Square with its numerous open air Cafés and Commercial Centers.

Old Square with The Planetarium and an always crowded Brewery.

Antiguos Almacenes de San José seat of Craftsmen where there always will be a good souvenir to take home.

Obispo Boulevard: The most popular and crowded commercial center within the area.

Museums: Revolution Museum, The Rum Museum, Cuban National Museum of Fine Arts, Museum of Ceramics, and the Museum of Colonial Art among others.

The Capitol a White House replica. The building houses the Republic Statue, which has planted at its feet a diamond to mark kilometer zero of the Carretera Central (Central Road).

El Gran Teatro de la Habana (Havana´s Great Theatre) homes the world famous "Cuban National Ballet" troupe lead by legendary prima ballerina absolute Alicia Alonso and the Havana's Lyric Theater company.

Partagás Cigar Factory where visitors can watch workers making Partagás aromatic cigars, and walk through the rolling station and the rooms where the final selection, labeling, and boxing processes take place. There is also a store, where visitors can by all cigars manufactured at the factory.

Famous restaurants:

- Floridita restaurant dates back to 1917. It specializes in seafood. The restaurant is linked to the life of renowned US writer Ernest Hemingway in Cuba, creator of one of the most famous cocktails in the world: Daiquirí.

- La Bodeguita del Medio is without a doubt, one of the most hospitable and famous restaurants in Cuba. The specialty of the house is traditional Cuban cuisine.

- Café del Oriente: Spain's King and Queen dined in this Gala Restaurant during their visit to Cuba. Located in the "San Francisco de Assísi Square" it offers a variety of gourmet international food.

Hotels in Havana »