Havana, the capital of Cuba, has its present rooted in the history of various events like colonisation by Spanish conquests, revolutions and independence.
Today, various historical monuments stand here as a proof of the incidents and events that occurred in the past. The city has a colourful historical and cultural ambiance. The citizens of this Caribbean city are a helpful lot and have lots of exciting old tales to share. Have a look at the top three historical monuments in Cuba.
Old Havana (Habana Vieja)
Old Havana has been recognised as a World heritage Site by UNESCO and exudes old-world charm. Various buildings constructed in Baroque and Neoclassical styles ornate the area. Some of the highlights here are Castillo de la Real Fuerza, Plaza de Armas, Plaza Vieja and the magnificent Catedral de San Cristobal. After visiting these monuments, head to the famous La Bodeguita del Medio, which had been of service to various renowned people such as Pablo Neruda, Ernest Hemingway, Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Josignacio. It is still known as a meeting place of poets, writers, musicians and artists.
Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabana
Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabana, situated atop the La Cabana Hill is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Havana. Constructed in the 1770s, it was one of the largest and the costliest ports made by the Spanish during that time. Following the lead of the British Colonials, the Spanish built this fort which dominates the entrance to Havana. Le Cabana was used as a military prison during the regime of Batista and the headquarters for Che Guevera during the time of the revolution. The fort, has a number of museums today, amongst which, the most impressive one is the Museo de Comandancia del Che. At night, you will be able to witness the Ceremonia del Cañonazo, during which, several actors perform a cannon-firing ceremony wearing 19th century costumes.
Finca La Vigia, San Francisco de Paula, Cuba
Finca la Vigia, located in San Francisco de Paula, about 15 kilometres from Havana, is famous for being a part-time home to Ernest Hemingway for about 20 years from 1939 to 1959. After Hemingway died, his temporary residence at Finca La Vigia was turned into the Museo Hemingway or the Hemingway Museum. The house is just as Hemingway had left it and contains around 8,000 books along with his typewriter, hunting trophies, paintings and other memorabilia. You can also take a stroll in the garden, where “Pilar” Hemingway’s fishing boat can be seen. The garden also has a pet cemetery where some of the beloved cats of Hemingway lie buried.