What makes a vacation memorable when nearly all destinations offer the best hotels, scenic views, and mouth-watering delicacies? It’s the soul that sets the tone for an unforgettable time. It’s safe to say that Cuba is a destination that will confound and amaze even the seasoned globetrotter. A world within a world, Cuba is a nucleus of all things unique, from cigar-rolled plantations to unmissable historic streets, art on every corner, and an array of vibrant shops and structures.
To witness Havana’s unbeatable combination of history, and culture, the most tantalizing drinks, stunning beaches, and dancing like there is no tomorrow, Cuba is truly the destination to live with gay abandon. From the whiff of rum to the sound of foot-tapping music, even the streets offer plenty to visitors who will find it all except a dull moment. Interestingly, the requirements for travel to Cuba are not cumbersome at all and are actually hassle-free. Travelers may be subjected to randomized COVID-19 testing on arrival, but no other conditions, such as quarantine or health testing.
Visit the colossal El Cristo de la Habana (Christ of Havana)-
The work of Cuban sculptor Jilma Madera from 1953 is a 66 ft high white Carrara marble statue. Located in the Havana suburb of Casablanca, the sculpture is an integral part of Cuban history and an artistic marvel. Interestingly, the 320-ton figure of Christ, according to locals, displays Christ holding an imaginary cigar in his right hand and a mojito in his left, honoring popular Cuban culture. Something one should visit to witness.
The history of Havana lies in the streets-
Having said that, you cannot explore the magical place on foot unless you plan to move there. With limited time and so much to explore, from excellent examples of Art Deco, learning about the mod history, and visiting areas of pre-revolutionary Havana, a vintage car tour is a novel way to sightsee. A trip in the brightly colored elegant 1950s American vehicles is symbolic of the city offering various photo-ops and the most vibrant backdrops. It is rightly said that no trip to La Habana would be complete without a drive around the Malecón, the seafront promenade, in an old blue classic car. Those who value their privacy can opt for exclusive private tours.
Have a drink Hemingway style-
The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway was a 1952 novel set in Cuba that fascinated many. The celebrated American author lived here for a good part of his life and, apart from writing, loved two bars in Old Havana. Visiting these places is a treat for tourists, avid readers, or history lovers. The famous La Bodeguita del Medio offers the absolute best mojitos that are Hemingway-approved and his favorite, and a framed and famous handwritten text. He loved the daiquiris at El Floridita, another nearby bar-restaurant. Call it a gimmick or a tribute to the literary genius, the restaurants continue to offer these drinks “the way Hemingway liked them.”
Enjoy Havana from La Torre sky bar
Cuba’s creative and colorful streets are not the most fascinating aspect, especially when one visits the Torre bar-restaurant on the 34th floor of the tallest building in all of Cuba at La Habana. The closest thing in Havana to a sky bar offers a variety of drinks and delicacies, but it is mainly for vista-hungry visitors. They see Havana from a new perspective and the eternal blue ocean in all its glory.
Stay at the Ensenachos Beach Resort
With sun, sea, and pristine beaches on your mind, your address in Cuba cannot be anywhere other than IIberostar’s Ensenachos Beach Resort in the Varadero neighborhood. Varadero is one of the most coveted coastal destinations in Cuba, not far from Havana, offering a wide variety of pristine beaches. The world-class resort is a mini paradise set in an idyllic location offering delectable delights like Italian, Japanese, Mediterranean, or Cuban. The spa is a must-visit, with a hydrotherapy area and professional masseurs.
Witness old-world glamour at the Hotel Nacional
The Hotel Nacional de Cuba was the abode of the upper crust of society, built in 1930 and operated by Americans until the Cuban Revolution of 1959. It is nothing like the modern, ultra-luxe resorts with infinity pools. The avant-garde hotels of Cuba are no match for the eclectic architectural mishmash of Art Deco, Moorish, and neo-colonial styles found at the Hotel Nacional de Cuba. This gorgeous property has hosted powerful switch-hitter Mickey Mantle, author Ernest Hemingway, Yuri Gagarin, Jean-Paul Sartre, supermodel Naomi Campbell, and Jesse Ventura.
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