Things to do in Havana
- Visit Old Havana
Old Havana’s heritage can be traced back more than five centuries, and today stands as an architectural time machine of styles and techniques. There are many huge tourist attractions here such as the Plaza de Armas, the oldest square in Havana and the city’s foundation, and El Templete, the oldest neo-classical building in Havana. There are a ton of great tourist attractions and street life to witness in Old Havana – vacationers should be sure not to skip it.
- Stay with a Local Resident
For those who really want to experience Cuban life, try staying at a private home or business. A quick Google search shows a number of places for vacationers to stay. Such places include as local antique collectors, art shops, and restored homes and mansions. You may even be allowed to live with a family – share meals and see how locals live daily.
- Check out the Local Music
There is a lot of great music that originates from Havana such as the rumba, a raw call and response styled song and dance. This Cuban music takes it roots from African rhythms and Hispanic influences and resembles jazz in its allowance for improv and impromptu sonic changes. Look for some of the local rumba spots around town and remember these events are usually formal. We recommend trying Callejon de Hammel on a Sunday – lots of great acts and bright atmosphere.
- Learn about Santeria
Santeria is the most practiced religion in Cuba and Havana. Santeria is a Yoruba religion that worships orishas, or gods, from western Nigeria. This religion is very musical, and every orisha is worshiped with a specific drum rhythm and dance. Participants become possessed by these rituals and show off certain characteristics of the god’s personality. The religion is very colorful, and more extreme sects even practice animal sacrifice.