Havana CubaHavana (or Habaneros) is the capital of Cuba. Havanna is founded on 25 June 1514 commissioned by the Spaniard Diego Velazquez de Cuellar. Havana is located on the north side of the island to a Bay. The old part of Havana is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
History of HavanaHavana was an important port for the Spaniards in the New World. Ships from all over the New World came with their products to Havana where these were skipped on other ships for their trip to Spain. The city is plundered, burned down and rebuilt several times over the centuries. After the Seven Years War with Great Britain (1762-1769) the Spanish have Havana considerably strengthened with the construction of the fort San Carlos de la Cabaña.
In the early 19th century, the trade between the Caribbean and the North American countries continued to increase and Havana became a thriving and trendy city. The prosperity under the blossoming middle class led to expensive new classical mansions risen. During this period Havana became known as the "the Paris of the Antilles".
Cuba became independent at the end of the nineteenth century, when the Spaniards left the island thanks to the efforts of the Americans who were trying instead to annex Cuba. On May 20, 1902, Tomas Estrada Palmade became the first president of Cuba. During the Republican period of 1902 to 1959 made Havana a new bloom period. Havana was then also a popular holiday destination for Americans. The influence of America continued to exist until the Cuban revolution in 1959, when the US-supported dictator Batista had to districts and Fidel Castro took over the power. Fidel Castro closed or nationalized most American companies in Cuba. These companies had especially since prohibition in the 1920s done good business.
Malecon, the Boulevard of Havana Cuba
The contemporary Havana can be mainly described as three cities in one, namely old Havana, Vedado and the suburbs. The historic centre Old Havana, with its narrow streets and overhanging balconies, is the traditional part of Havana. Old Havana was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982. In the North and West of Old Havana is the newer Vedado. Vedado has become the center of commercial activities and nightlife. Centro Habana is especially a shopping area that lies between Vedado and Old Havana.
Since the 1980s important parts of Old Havana (La Habana Vieja) are restored to boost tourism. The city is with these renovations greatly improved. For most of the large squares Plaza Vieja, Plaza de la Catedral, Plaza de San Francisco and Plaza de Armas, and the main tourist streets Obispo and Mercaderes, the renovation approaches its completion.
Highlights in Havana
- El Capitolio Havana:
The Capitol was built in the 1920s. The building is a replica of the Capitol in Washington and served as the Senate of Cuba.
- El Castillo del Morro:
El Morro Castle was built in 1589. El Morro protected the port of Havana against the Caribbean pirates and invading armies.
- The Malecon:
This boulevard runs from Castillo de San Salvador to Vedado.
- Castillo de la Real Fuerza:
This fort is located on the west side of the port of Havana and is considered to be the oldest fort on the American continent. It is a Unesco World Heritage site since 1982 .
- Fabrica de Tabacos Partagás:
The cigar factory Partagas in Havana.
Adress: Calle Industria 520, Havana
- Hotel Nacional de Cuba:
Nacional Hotel is a great place to drink a mojito on the terrace and to fantasize about how the wealthy Americans enjoyed here from their luxury life in the 1950s.
Adress: Calle 21 y O, Vedado, Plaza, Ciudad de la Habana, Cuba.
- La Habana Vieja:
Halbana Vieja or the old town of Havana is restored to its former glory.
- Museo de la Revolución:
The Museum of the revolution is located in the former Presidential Palace of the former dictator Batista.
Adress: Calle Refugio 1, e Calle Monserrate y Calle Zulueta, La Habana Vieja
- Museo Ernest Hemingway:
The writer Ernest Hemingway stayed in the 1930's and 1940's in Cuba. He has written a large part of his work in Cuba, including "The old man and The sea". With this book he won the Plitzer Prize in 1953. In 1954 he received the Nobel Prize in literature.
In the 1950s he spent seven years at the Hotel Ambos Mundos in Havana. He rented a room on the 5th floor to mid 1959. He then moved to his new home Finca Vigia in San Francisco de Paula, about 15 kilometres from the Centre of Havana. This House is now the Ernest Hemingway Museum and has remained unchanged as Ernest has left at that time.
- Parque John Lennon:
The John Lennon Park is located in the Vedado district in Havana. On one of the couches in the park is a statue of John Lennon.
Adress: Calle 15 e. 6 y 8, Vedado.
- Plaza de Armas:
Plaza de Armas is the oldest square in Havana. In the middle of this square there is a statue of the ex-president Antonio de Cespedes.
- Plaza de la Cathedral:
To this square is located the Cathedral of St. Mary (Cathedral de la Virgen María de la Concepción Inmaculada de La Habana). It is a Roman Catholic Cathedral and is the seat of the Archbishop of Havana.
- Plaza de la Revolución:
Revolution square with the monument of Jose Marti and an image of Che Guevera on the building of the Ministry of the Internal Affairs. On this square Fidel Castro kept his speeches to the people.
- Acuario Nacional de Cuba:
The National Aquarium of Cuba is an Institute dedicated to education and conservation of marine animals from the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. You can see here the underwater world with coral, turtles, and tropical fish, and you can visit the dolphin show.
Adress: Avenida 3ra, esq. 62, Ciudad de La Habana, Cuba
- Cementerio de Colón or Columbus Cemetery:
This cemetery in Havana is one of the largest cemeteries in the world. It is thought that in the early 16th century Columbus lay buried here temporarily. Here, Korda has taken the famous photo of Che Guevara.
Statue of Jose Marti in Havana
- City map of Havana
- The weather in Havana Cuba
- Search for a casa particular in Havana
- List of restaurants in Havana Cuba
- Pictures of Havana Cuba
- local time in Havana
- Radio Havana Cuba
- Cuban music: Salsa, Son