WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA, FOR REAL TRAVELERS.
My name is Louis Alarcon and I live in Havana, I have decided to make this article to show you the most authentic, original and hidden places to visit in Havana and the most authentic activities that you could do it in Havana.
If you are new in Cuba I´m sure you are looking for “things to do in havana” , “what to do in cuba” “places to visit in havana” etc . That´s true?
Other tourists / travelers / bloggers usually write the same tourist places where they meet all tourism doing the same.
At the end of this article I also show you links to the most common, tourist and famous activities to do in Cuba, but first I write my list of places not so tourist to discover another Havana.
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº1
1 – Eat or dinner in the highest restaurant and with best views of all of Havana (as it is a place owned by the state almost nobody knows it, but it will surprise you)
It is called la Torre restaurant and it is in the Focsa Building, very close to the National Hotel.
Video about the views from this hidden restaurant in Havana .
Complete information in tripadvisor. Click below.
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 2
2 – Hire the services of a local cuban guide photographer to show you places that do not appear in any guide, this may be my best advice, since visiting a Cuban house is exciting.
If you like photography here you have the perfect combination, a tour of wonderful and hidden corners of Havana while taking great photographs, here you can read the comments in Tripadvisor . Click here
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 3
3 – Dinner and see a model pass at the La Maison restaurant.
They open from Thursday and have a wonderful terrace where you can dine outdoors and you can also see a pass of Cuban models of wonderful beauty, no reservation required.
As a curiosity to know that in the same venue of La Maison there is a small disco to which you can go to see the Cuban atmosphere when you finish your dinner.
What to do in havana for real travelers
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 4
4 – If you are thinking of more things to do in Havana, you can take the small boat to visit the rule district and its church in honor of a black virgin called the Virgin of Regla.
The price of this boat is 1 cuban peso, that is 5 centimos of dollar. You have to know that the church closes its doors at 5 pm
Click the below link on Tripadvisor
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 5
5 – Cemetery of Columbus.
If you are looking for different places and actitivies in Havana this is one of the activities that fans of architecture and history likes a lot, it is one of the most spectacular cemeteries in Latin America, my advice would be to go on a day that does not make much sun, because it is like doing a trip through the snow, the white of the blind marble, I love to go on cloudy days.
Pack of photos of this Cemetery by Liset Cruz photographer (click below)
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 6
6 – Tropical of Havana
On Sunday afternoons there is a place where Cubans usually gather to dance is on the outskirts of Havana and you probably will not find any tourists, it is 100% Cuban and you will see from young people to 80 year olds dancing Cuban rhythms.
They usually open at 6 but the best time to go is at 7 pm
More information in tripadvisor (click below)
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 7
7 – Restaurant and disco for dancing Salsa 1830
No doubt the 1830 is the place where salsa fans will show their skills, curiously Havana is a city with 2 million inhabitants but few places to dance salsa, this is the best, Thursday and Sunday are the days in the more people visit this place.
Link in tripavisor, click below for more data
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 8
8 – House of music of Miramar.
Many hotels have nightclubs, but to enjoy a true Cuban nightclub or party room, you have to go to what in Havana we call “a matinee” that means a party in the afternoon, and the best place is the house of music of Miramar. If you go at night it is different because the price is more expensive and you will see only tourists and tourist seekers, in the afternoon it is healthier, more Cubans and more fun.
Tripadvisor link below with more data
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 9
9 – Walk along Cardenas street to see different architecture.
There are wonderful buildings in Cardenas Street, it is near the Capitol and if you follow it you will see a great graffiti of Che Guevarra and a little further on the Havana train station which is a jewel of architecture.
Click below to see the situation in google maps.
What to do in havana for real travelers
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 10
10 – Chinese neighborhood of Havana and its gyms with grandparents.
There are already few Chinese in Havana but if you want to see different things have to visit this neighborhood that began to form about 1920, some Chinese societies let travelers go inside to see how Cubans perform taichi or wutshu exercises, you will also find restaurants very famous as the MIMOSA.
Here you have a couple of links so you do not miss out on this small but special Habanero neighborhood.
Chinatown in havana
Flor de loto restaurant in chinatown.
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 11
11- Restaurant the Rock “La roca”
An authentic Cuban restaurant, where you can eat for 4 cuc, but also offers a varied choice of dishes to choose from, sometimes the food is enlivened by a pianist.
You should know that if you visit at night you will see how Cubans are having fun, loud music, humor show (you probably will not understand) artists on stage, a real 100% Cuban fun.
Click below, more data in tripadvisor.
WHAT TO DO IN HAVANA (TOURISTIC PLACES AND ACTIVITIES)
In these 11 places you will see that you are not surrounded by tourists as they are less known than the usual places that everyone visits, I do not want to say that the tourist places are worse but if you really want to know what to do in Havana I would follow the previous list.
Here you have a second list with the most typical places to practice tourism in Cuba, surely you will also love it.
What to do in Havana as a standard tourism, activities to do.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 1
1- Drink a mojito at the Hotel Nacional.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 2
2.- Visit “La bodeguita del medio”.
La “bodeguita del medio” is probably the most famous place in Havana, thanks to Ernest Hemingway.
All the information in Tripadvisor
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 3
3.- Take a daiquiri like Hemingway in the Floridita.
The world record about the biggest Daiquiri was in Floridita, you can see the great cup inside this touristic restaurant.
Complete information in tripadvisor.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 4
4.- See Sunday at 12 pm at Alley Hamel, afrocuban dancers.
Hamel halley in Tripadvisor, click below link.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 5
5.- Visit Havana in a convertible car for a couple of hours.
(my advice is to do it at sunset from 5 to 7 so the sun would not open your head)
You can find this cars in front of the Capitol or in the hotel National.
In tripadvisor you can find companys of these cars.
The price is 30 cuc per hour / one car (not per person), it could be 35 cuc if you only need one hour and it could be 25 cuc per hour if you want 2 or more hours.
A suggestion, visit the “Havana forest” (el bosque de la Habana) is a fantastic unknown place.
One company of this cars in tripadvisor.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 6
6.- Eat or dinner at the restaurant “La Guarida” where the famous film “Strawberry and Chocolate”
Do not forget to book as it is one of the most sought after places in Havana and do not forget to ask about the terrace chillo ut you have in that same building, here you have their website.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 7
7.- Eat where Obama ate when he was in Cuba.
A great restaurant that became famous for Obama’s visit to Cuba.
Paladar San Cristobal
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 8
8 .- Tour the 4 squares of Old Havana, this is the best way to tour Old Havana, it is a tourist circuit but it is wonderful to see how Havana has evolved.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 9
9.- Visit the cigar cellar of the hotel Conde de Villanueva there you can enjoy some special cigars that are not sold in any other hotel in Havana, the fan is called Reinaldo and is perhaps the best cigar roller in Havana, his pure special is called Elephant (extra wide)
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN HAVANA Nº 10
10.- Do not forget to see the cannon at nine o’clock in the cabin, a wonderful tourist attraction that I advise to be there at 8 o’clock so that you have time to see everything well before the cannonade ceremony begins. Fantastic panoramic views of the city
More information in tripadvisor, click below
There are many more places but you will have to find them, what to do in Havana depends on you, but above all you must know that it is a very safe city and that you can go through the streets you want and enjoy the hospitality of the Cuban people.
Finally, here you have my video about cuba like a inspiration before to decide what to do in havana.