Many people don’t like November, they say it’s gray, rainy, dull and depressing. In 2020 entering yet another lockdown even more so. But me I actually always loved this month. It’s calm, it’s cozy, it’s time to slow down and enjoy the quietness before the holiday season preparations kick in (not sure about the last part this year though). Today on the 1st of November it is raining outside, my last open air tennis training got cancelled and I decided it was the perfect time to finish the long overdue chapter of our 2017/2018 trip to Cuba – La Habana.
It was the very last part of our 2,5 weeks on the island. We have saved the best of Cuba for the end and it was absolutely beautiful. After almost 3 years since that trip my memories are not that vivid anymore and I wouldn’t be able to tell you in detail what we did. But I still would like to share with you some pictures and some emotions that stayed with me.
I remember the chaos, the sounds, the people, the constant movement and energy of the city. After visiting smaller quieter places in Cuba, Havana was screaming of action. I was overwhelmed and in the first moment even a bit lost in this madness.
Havana is stunningly beautiful! Its colonial city center, its retro cars, its bright vivid colors, its people – you walk around and you want to stop at every corner trying to capture that unique atmosphere. But it’s very hard or even impossible to get hold of the city in a picture or in a video. You can live it, you can breathe it, you can immerse yourself into it while being there but you can’t take it with you.
On the other hand, for every beautiful picture you take you can take dozens more of destruction and abandonment. Everywhere you look you will see impressive historical buildings falling apart and poorly maintained and neglected streets.
I have to confess that this state of despair has even its own weird but undeniable charm. And I can totally understand why so many tourists are attracted to this raw and authentic experience.
One of the top spots in the city is Malecon – a long promenade stretching for 8 km. Watching the sunset there is unmissable!
One of my favorite things in Havana was riding a taxi! Negotiating the price not so much, but driving through the lively streets with loud reggaeton sounds was the best! I fell in love with reggaeton after our trip to Cuba and ever since it’s my favorite music!
Some other fun things we have done was a horse-drawn carriage city tour and a visit to a night club (just two of us me and Dasha!). Unfortunately no club photos, but here is the four of us in a carriage =)
Some more colorful pictures of Havana from the neighborhood we were staying in
The top highlight of our 3 days in Havana was the New Year’s eve. First we went for a dinner to the absolutely amazing bar Mas Habana and then we welcomed the new year 2018 on the rooftop of Hotel Inglaterra! I am sorry for the blurry phone pictures, but believe me that was unforgettable!
All dressed up and ready to party!
This picture is very far from being a masterpiece, but I just love the spirit of it: dancing on the rooftop with a stunning view on Havana, drinking mojitos and having the fun of my life. Pure joy!
If you need one more address that you absolutely have to visit in Havana it is the restaurant Los Nardos – the most delicious food we had in Cuba and live performance from opera singers. Just wow!
I can’t believe how fast the time flies and that I am only finding the time now to write my final post about Cuba. Looking at the pictures makes me feel nostalgic, not only for the time when traveling was possible but also for the time when meeting people was normal and effortless. I am not overdramatizing, I know we will pass this virus eventually and we will be enjoying life again to the fullest, but for now I can only look at the pictures and savor those wonderful moments of the past in my mind and on paper.