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The Cuban Capital is, without a doubt, the tourism destination of excellence of the largest of the West Indies

HAVANA CITY TOUR

The Cuban Capital is, without a doubt, the tourism destination of excellence of the largest of the West Indies. Within the city, its historic center (considered by UNESCO World Heritage in 1982) is an obliged reference destination for all visitors who come to this city. For centuries, this city has been considered the key to the Gulf (of México).The foundation of the city, in its final place next to the entrance channel of a well protected bay, dates far back to November of 1519.

La Villa de San Cristóbal de la Habana, became with the course of time the meeting place for the Spanish fleets in charge of transporting to the Metropolis all the wealth extracted from their domains in the so called New World.

It also became the center of trade and communications between the region and the Old Continent. Similar advantages, essentially derived from its strategic geographic position, also influenced directly the future development of this prosperous villa, which started to grow under the protection of a unique defensive system in the Hispanic América and surrounded by a wall whose construction (started from the second half of the XVII century and finished more than 100 years later) was considered ineffective and expensive Descripción: Plaza Vieja, Old havanasince the very beginning.

La Plaza de Armas (Armas Square) is located just a few steps away, around which we can see the important Castillo de la Real Fuerza (1577) -which exhibits today the most important artistic pottery collection in the island, holding on its tower La Giraldilla, an artistic wind vane that has become a symbol of the city - The General Capitans' Palace (Museum of the City) and El Segundo Cabo Palace.

El Templete, a small neoclassic building finished inn 1828, is the place where the inhabitants of Havana celebrate, every November 16, the anniversary of the first mass and the first town council of San Cristobal de la Habana, and is also the start point of all tourism tours -in general- around the original center of the Cuban Capital.

There are three other squares with surrounding structures that invariably call the attention of the visitors: the Cathedral Square, surrounded by opulent mansions; the recently restored Plaza Vieja (Old Square), from where you can see the outstanding house of the Counts of San Juan de Jaruco and the Square of Saint Francis D' Assisi, located next to the identically named church and convent.

Walking by Old Havana streets, many of them still cobbled, also represents the opportunity of getting acquainted with more than a dozen museums and studio-galleries of famous Cuban and Latin American fine artists; and visiting the houses dedicated to Benito Juárez, Asia, Africa, Puerto Rico, Arabs (with the only hall for Muslim prayers in Descripción: El MorroCuba), and Simón Bolívar.

It is also interesting to visit the scale model of this municipality; Alameda de Paula, a wonderful Promenade built during the second half of the XVIII century; or crossing the Bay onto Casablanca town, where the Christ of the Bay was built; and Regla town, where you can see the Sanctuary of Nuestra Señora de la Virgen de Regla, who is the protector of seamen and fishermen and the patroness of the Havana Bay.

The historic-military park Morro-Cabaña comprises two well known redoubts: El Castillo de los Tres Reyes del Morro (The Three Kings of El Morro Castle) -1630- and San Carlos de la Cabaña fortress -1774-, considered at that time the most important work of Havana defensive fortified system.

It is precisely on the second one where a canon shot is fired every night, at nine o'clock, in a replica of an attractive ceremony that used to announce with two shots (early in the mourning and late at night) that the walls of the city were to be closed or opened, and to place or remove the enormous floating wood and bronze made chain to regulate the access to the port of the villa. Nevertheless, discovering so called Havana of outside the walls is as passionate as walking on the streets of the old town. Havana grew under the inflow of the most dissimilar construction trends of the world, experiencing in its fields the presence of Renaissance, Mudejar, Baroque and Descripción: Hotel Nacional, VedadoCuban Baroque, Neoclassicism, Eclecticism, Art Nouveau, Art Deco and Pragmatism.

On the other side of the useless wall, emblematic places were built, as it is the case of Prado Promenade, the Great Havana Theater and the Capitol, one of the most splendid buildings of the capital in which the Statue of the Republic was placed, third highest of the world in indoor space; close to its feet a diamond was planted to mark the kilometer 0 of the Carretera Central (Central Road).

Other places were built, like the emblematic Havana Malecon, about 12 kilometers long and considered the most characteristic image of the city, linking the traditional center to the populous neighborhood of Vedado, whose heart, La Rampa, allows easy access to other places of interest for visitors, like the bicentennial University of Havana, the Revolution Square and the José Martí Monument (highest lookout in the city, 138,5 meters over the sea level), and the Cemetery of Colon, considered one of the most important cemetery of the planet because of its divers artistic values.

More than 15 kilometers of coasts, fine sands and blue waters stretch out between Bacuranao and Guanabo creating a nautical circuit, simply identified by the inhabitants of Havana as Playas del Este, and where natural attributes usually make Santa María del Mar outstanding place.

Descripción: Miramar avenueAlso on the way to the east of the capital, only 15 kilometers away from downtown, you can find a town founded in 1733 out of the existence of mineral-medicinal waters that will invite you to get acquainted with its historical, architectural, cultural and natural values: Santa María del Rosario.

Like any other great city, Havana is the center of the intense political, scientific and cultural life of the nation. Tens of museums, theaters and concert halls, galleries of art and cultural institutions are known all over the city, and some like the Ballet Nacional de Cuba (National Ballet of Cuba), La Casa de las Américas (the House of the Américas), la Fundación del Nuevo Cine Latinoamericano (the Foundation of New Latin American Cinema), or the Grupo Nacional de Danza Folclórica (National Folkloric Dance Group) have an enormous international reputation.

When visiting Havana city, we suggest you different excursions by very important different sites:

1- City Tour My Habana colonial

Descripción: City Tour - Mi Habana ColonialClassical tour through old and modern Havana.                                                   

Duration: 4h

 

Description

Ø  Visit to the outer areas of Morro-Cabana Park;

Ø   Visit to in Colonial Havana declared World Heritage by UNESCO in 1982;

Ø  Walking tour in the historic centre including main squares, fortresses and buildings built by the spaniards during the XVI and XIX centuries with stops to buy crafts;

Ø  Visit to La Bodeguita del Medio; main streets and avenues in Old Havana.

Ø  Stop at the National Capitoly;

Ø  Continue the tour with a panoramic view of Havana's University and the visit to the Revolution Square, time for pictures over here;

Ø  Return to your casa particular

 

2- Tour Havana, Cigars and Rum Tour

Descripción: Havana, Cigars and Rum TourDescripción: mhtml:file://F:\Datos%20de%20Usuarios\Roberto2\Documentos\La%20Habana\S%20Global%20-%20Excursion%20Cigar,%20Rum.mht!http://www.serviciosglobal.com/images/1x1.gifHavana tour to understand cigar and rum traditions.

 

Duration: around 4h

 

Description

 

Ø  Visit to a historical cigar factory (suggestion: old Partagas factory, near to National Capitoly);

 

Ø  Visit to the Rum Museum to know about the origin and development of the rum production in the island and enjoy a Cuban cocktail;

 

Ø  Visit to El Cristo de La Habana outlook point, with a panoramic view of Havana City from the other side of the Bay;

 

Ø  Return to casa particular

 

 

3- Hemingway Route Tour

Descripción: mhtml:file://F:\Datos%20de%20Usuarios\Roberto2\Documentos\La%20Habana\S%20Global%20-%20Exc%20Heming.mht!http://www.serviciosglobal.com/images/1x1.gif

Descripción: Hemingway Route Tour 
Visit to the museum-house of Hemingway and to the places used by the writer.

 

Duration: around 4h

 

Description

 

Ø  Visit to Hemingway Museum located in San Francisco de Paula. Tour around the house with a specialized guide;

Ø  Visit to La Bodeguita del Medio and Floridita Bars;

 

Ø  Return to casa particular

 

 

4- Cannon Shot ceremony tour - El Cañonazo

Descripción: mhtml:file://F:\Datos%20de%20Usuarios\Roberto2\Documentos\La%20Habana\S%20Global%20-%20Cannon%20shot.mht!http://www.serviciosglobal.com/images/1x1.gif

 Visit La Cabaña Fortress and enjoy the 9:00 p.m. cannon shot Descripción: Cannon Shot ceremony tour - El Cañonazoceremony. (El Cañonazo de las 9.00 pm)

Duration: about 2h

 

Description

 

Ø  The 9 PM ceremony of the cannon shot (ceremonia del cañonazo) is a must-see event filled with nostalgia and mystery. First, a lamplighter lights the gas lanterns. Then, a crier (a recruit with a voice so good he's been signed on permanently even though his military service ended years ago) begins an eerie plainsong chant that reverberates throughout the fortress and, when the wind is right, across the bay to La Punta:
("Silence; night has fallen / The lanterns are lit / Our cannon is named Capitolino / At nine it will sound"). Finally, a detail of some half-dozen soldiers dressed in scarlet, 18th-century uniforms marches in and loads and fires the cannon, which make a deafening noise (cover your ears).

 

5- The Havana Tour Bus

HAVANA BUS TOUR

The Cuban Transport company Transtur has three different expanded and guided city tours. The HAVANA BUS TOUR starts from Parque Central (Central Park) in front of the hotel Inglaterra and goes to ALAMAR and stops right in front of the MAR AZUL BEACH.(check you're on the right tour) The price of a ticket is 5 CUC valid for a complete day (return included) Bus time from 9.00 am till 6.30 pm children 0-6 year free.
At present time this Havana bus service in modern busses is the cheapest and best way to reach the Playas del Este.

Descripción: Havana Bus Tour - guided Havana tour in an open bus

 

 

 

The Havana Bus Tour in an open double deck bus through Havana three different tours are available (T1,T2,T3) One tour goes to ALAMAR - East Havana.
Below - The Havana Bus Tour stop in front of Hotel Inglaterra at Parque Central Havana (Central Park)

 

 

 

Descripción: Havana bus tour  cuba


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