The Cuba Experience : Cuba Holidays
bella costa

bella costa

10 Nights £999 »

memories miramar + bella costa

memories miramar + bella costa

10 Nights £1109 »

playa pesquero

playa pesquero

14 Nights £1059 »

Know Cuba Like Us

Havana Holidays

Havana Holidays: Picture Tour

Havana is the capital city of Cuba, covering some 740 square kilometres. Although Havana is the smallest city of the country, it has the largest population; in excess of 2 million inhabitants.
After several attempts to establish the city in an area located to the south coast where Havana of today is located, by 1519, settlement had taken place around the harbour, known today as Old Havana.
Havana became a very important port for Spain due to its strategic position in the Gulf of Mexico. All ships sailing back to Spain, after having collected the gold and silver from the neighbouring colonies, had to stop in the Bay of Havana to stock up on necessary provisions of water,salted meat, etc.for the long journey ahead. This helped the city to flourish and to develop its economy and culture. There are masterpieces of architecture dating as far as the 16th century that can be admired today. All around the colonial area are examples of the stunning architecture from Cuba's colonial past. Even those that appear run down, are examples of beauty and well worth a visit.
We invite you to visit our treasures in Old Havana, acknowledged in 1982 by UNESCO, and declared a "World Heritage" site. The cars from the 1950's, the atmosphere of the streets, the bars that Hemingway went to, the music, the dancing … will take you back in time to enjoy a unique experience, "The Havana Experience".
There are a thousand things we could mention about Havana but we did not bring you this far to tell you about it -it is our intention to let you live it. Enjoy Havana, we will be offering different tours and excursions that you can enjoy during your stay - for more information contact your local representative.
Havana is Cuba's capital city, and the centre for social, political and economic life. The city was founded in 1519 by the Spaniards under the name of Villa de San Cristóbal de la Habana. For centuries, it was Spain’s vantage point as a port city advantageously located at the entrance of the Gulf of Mexico and playing a prominent role in trade and communications between the Old and the New World. This earned the city the name of “Key to the Gulf”.
The city was subjected to many attacks from pirates attracted by the wealth stored in ships moored at the harbor, waiting to sail off for the metropolis. To keep them at bay, the Spanish authorities build a high wall that surrounded the city - a system unparalleled in America. Much is still preserved for visitors to see, including places such as the Alameda de Paula, by the harbor, the Plaza de Armas (Parade Ground), the Cathedral square, the Real Fuerza, Morro and Cabaña castles, the Capitanes Generales and Segundo Cabo palaces, as well as remains of the wall and cobblestones streets; all evidence of its magnificent past.
In late 1982, the historical part of the city, the 19th century’s urban expansion, the harbor channel with its two sides and the defense forts were declared a World Heritage by UNESCO. This international recognition was given to the city for safeguarding its historical and cultural assets.
A stroll through Havana's stone-paved streets is a must. We also recommend a visit to its fortresses, buildings, monuments, museums, churches, mansions, stately houses and squares. Havana's colonial roofs, stain glasses, grilles, balustrades and balconies reflect an amazing mixture of architectural styles from different centuries.
The Real Fuerza castle –the oldest colonial fortress in America– is a museum specializing in artistic pottery made by Cuba’s most famous visual artists.
The so-called Torre del Homenaje, a bell tower and a former watchtower, features the sculpture of La Giraldilla, widely known as the symbol of the city.
The Captain Generals’ house, now the City Museum, displays collections that give a broad historical
overview of the city from its foundation to the present times.
On the heights over the bay, there is the Morro-Cabaña Historical Military Park, made up by the castle known as the Tres Santos Reyes Magos del Morro and the San Carlos de la Cabaña fortress, with a museum exhibiting the country’s most important collection of weapons.
Every night soldiers wearing colonial-style uniforms re-enact the past tradition of firing a cannon in a lively captivating ceremony. In the past this shot signaled the closing of the ramparts protecting the city from pirates attacks.
For foreign visitors, the offer is completed with the authentic flavor of Cuban dishes at La Bodeguita del Medio, an inevitable photograph by the beautiful baroque cathedral –a National Monument– or the breeze and sunshine as you walk all along the city Malecón, unceasingly washed over by the sea.
The old part of the city also reflects Cuba’s links with the rest of the world. Its many museums exhibit the history and culture of the peoples of Africa, Mexico, Ecuador, Venezuela and Arabia. The latter houses the only Muslim mosque in the city open for both national and foreign believers.
Havana has managed to retain the charm of bygone days, whilst embracing the inevitable changes of modern day life. Its grand houses, tall buildings and modern architecture sit in harmony with the past.

Of all the neighborhoods or districts that make up this part of Havana, El Vedado is unanimously preferred by visitors and locals. It is here you will find the theaters, art galleries, movie houses, exhibition halls, cultural institutions, specialty restaurants, bars and other recreation facilities.
Its backbone is a street known as La Rampa, whose distinctive features are Cuban artists’ paintings on granite tiles that have been inlaid in 500 meters of sidewalk.
The former Villa de San Cristóbal de la Habana is the focal point of Cuban culture, full of musicians, poets, dancers, actors, actresses and playwrights. It is also the headquarters of Cuba’s National Ballet, the Casa de las Américas and the Fundación del Nuevo Cine Latinoamericano, as well as a host to important international festivals.
The history of the city and the country at large is closely related to the José Martí Memorial, dedicated to the National Hero of Cuba. A square bearing his name provides huge space for parades, political gatherings, and mass celebrations. Renowned personalities from all over the world receive homage in the City of Havana in museums like Ernest Hemingway’s House and the Napoleonic Museum. The latter is one of the most noteworthy on earth displaying a collection of Napoleon’s belongings.
A number of facilities are devoted to science, fauna and flora, including the “Carlos J. Finlay” Historical Museum of Sciences, unique in America, the “Felipe Poey” Natural History Museum –first of its kind founded in the country–, the National Botanical Garden covering some 600 hectares and the National Aquarium exhibiting a wide range of fish species from tropical and subtropical zones.
The heat of the city forces holidaymakers to move to the Playas del Este –Santa María del Mar and Guanabo–, with 18 kilometers of white sand and crystalline water. Known as the Blue Circuit, it is here the sun, the sea, water sports and excellent facilities for recreation are available for all.
For those who enjoy yachting, Marina Puertosol Tarará provides dockage 24 hours a day as well as restaurant services, tours and accommodation. It also organizes international tournaments such as “The Old Man And the Sea”, devoted to blue marlin fishing and “La Hispanidad”. The Caribbean scuba diving center offers multiple choices that range from nighttime dives to diving all the way down to caves and coral reefs. Miramar, in the opposite direction, emerges as the heart of the dynamic development of tourism infrastructure, with a major construction programme that includes business and rest facilities, buildings and shopping malls.
Also in this area, the Conference Center hosts important international meetings organized by Cuba. It is part of an environment complemented with Pabexpo trade fair grounds and the exclusive services provided by the Club Havana.
Marina Hemingway provides a great variety of facilities and activities for visitors and their vessels.
International “Blue Marlin” and “Ernest Hemingway” tournaments are also a big draw.
La Aguja scuba diving center offers opportunities for scuba divers to explore wrecked ships, at night, and take pictures under the sea. In Marina Marlin, tours, sport fishing, jet ski and catamaran rides are waiting for you. “Hemingway” international nautical club organizes sailboat races called “Havana Cup”, “Castillo del Morro” and “Feliz Navidad”.
Havana’s most impressive allure however, are its hospitable and smiling people, always ready to provide information, discuss or chat about different matters and even share a sip of coffee or rum.







15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - i | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - ii | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - iii | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - iv | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - ix | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - v | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - vi | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - vii | 15 reasons to spend in cuba your caribbean holiday - viii | 2008 world music festival in varadero | architecture in cuba - i | architecture in cuba - ii | architecture in cuba - iii | a walking tour through habana colonial | caribbean holidays in cuba in pure marco polo style - i | caribbean holidays in cuba in pure marco polo style - ii | caribbean holidays in cuba in pure marco polo style - iii | caribbean holidays in cuba in pure marco polo style - iv | columbus cemetery | cubadisco 2008 in havana | cuba holidays - currency and credit cards | cuba holidays - modern havana | cuba holidays - paradise under the stars | cuba holidays - useful information | cuban cuisine - cuba holidays | cuban culture and tobacco - cuba holidays. | cuban music, magic power on your holidays - i | cuban music, magic power on your holidays - ii | cuban music, magic power on your holidays - iii | cuban music, magic power on your holidays - iv | cuban music, magic power on your holidays - v | cuban "trova" and cuba holidays | cuba painters - cuba holidays - i | cuba painters - cuba holidays - ii | don cangrejo - cuba holidays | el aljibe - cuba holidays | el floridita | el templete - cuba holidays | ernest hemingway and cuba ever lasting love | fashion in cuba - cuba holidays 1/2 | fashion in cuba - cuba holidays 2/2 | fishing and diving in your cuba holidays | havana city - part i | havana city - part ii | havana city - part iii | havana city - part iv | havana city - part v | havana city - part vi | havana hotels - cuba holidays | health and holidays in cuba - i | health and holidays in cuba - ii | la guarida - cuba holidays | la zaragozana - cuba holidays | old havana | other places to go in havana | our man in havana | the cuban cigars - havanas | the old man and his city | the year cuba was english | tropicana: a paradise under the stars. | where to eat in havana city
The Cuba Experience is an independent ground handling agent, especialized in organizing your Cuba holidays and dedicated to provide quality service in order to make the utmost of your holidays in Cuba

Original painting decorations by cuban artist Sandra Dooley
graphic design Otto Pantoja