Known as much for its iconic 1950s American vehicles as for its party atmosphere and colourful streets, Havana is the beating heart of revolutionary Cuba and a much-loved destination for locals and tourists alike.
A flight to Havana takes close to 10 hours for anyone on a flight from the UK. Currently Virgin Atlantic is the only airline to fly direct between the UK and Cuba, departing from London's Gatwick Airport. Travelling via indirect routes will often work out cheaper, but will take more time. Most people choose to connect via Madrid which has more flights to Cuba than elsewhere in Europe. However you can also catch flights to Havana from other European cities including Amsterdam and Paris.
Flights to Havana land at Jose Marti International Airport which is about 20 minutes from the city. Transfer times after can vary, and getting to hotels in Havana is best done with a good map or a local to guide you.
The public buses in Havana are extremely busy, but also are a very cheap way to get about the city. Cuba has a unique queuing system for buses. Ask for "El ultimo" when you arrive at the bus stop to get a place in the queue. You may find it easier to use one of the metered taxis available outside hotels to get around. You can also book car hire from Havana Airport. There are even companies specialising in vintage motors. Be prepared to engage with some unusual road rules which will keep you on your toes.
The recent history of Cuba and its current political powerhouse can be seen at the Museum of the Revolution and the National Capitol Building respectively. The famous cigars produced by the nation can be seen at the nearby Partagas Factory. The Prado and El Malecon are popular amongst tourists and locals alike because they are perfect for aimless strolling. Here you can unearth the city's authentic delights and glance out over the gorgeous waterfront to see the curve of the city and its buildings in both directions.
The National Capitol Building (and cars!)
Havana's malecon sea wall, and the famous Hotel Nacional de Cuba
Plaza Vieja in Havana Old Town
Music is everywhere in Cuba Kamira
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