5 mementos to bring back from your Cuba holiday

Posted: 15-Mar-16 15:08

After more than a half-century of travel restrictions, some Americans now have the opportunity to visit Cuban sites and attractions for the very first time, many hoping to also bring home some unique souvenirs from their trips. Before going, though, there are some important things to know about which products you can legally bring home with you.

5 mementos to bring back from your Cuba holiday

A trip to Cuba, no doubt, will be one to remember, but it’s also important to remember that not everything for sale in the country is legal to return home with. To help cut through the confusion, writer Haley Knauer of thekitchn.com recently outlined her take on "5 Souvenirs to (Legally) Bring Back from Cuba".

Cuban cigars are first on Knauer's list

Cuban cigars are first on Knauer’s list. She says it’s easy to find Cohiba, one of the country’s most popular brands, in high-end hotels, souvenir shops or even on the streets. According to Knauer, though, you will get the best deals if you buy these cigars directly from the factory, plus you can also go on a tour.

Along with cigars, the article also points out how inexpensive Cuban rum is and how easy it is to find. The writer explains that Havana Club is the brand most Cubans favour, and is also commonly served in restaurants and bars. She suggests picking up a bottle in your hotel, a gift shop or even in the duty-free shop of the airport before you return home.

Writer recommends choosing any Cuban cafe

Another type of drink is also popular in Cuba. The writer recommends choosing any Cuban coffee shop and then ordering a Cuban coffee. This will give you a taste of what the locals commonly experience in the morning and late afternoon. This dark-roasted shot of espresso is topped with crema and tastes of sweet caramel-like flavouring. To enjoy the same drink at home, the coffee beans are commonly sold by the bag.

Easily find bags of raw demerara sugar for sale

Knauer adds its strength is not the only thing that makes a Cuban coffee taste so great. It also includes demerara sugar. With a hint of light molasses, this coarse sugar is light brown and replaces the need to add any other sugar or milk to your drink. According to the article, visitors should be able to easily find bags of raw demerara sugar for sale in either a local gift shop or even at an open-air market.

Hire an instructor for a couple of Salsa lessons

Knauer says that salsa dancing is a way of life in Cuba, plus serves as a great way to meet locals and is an impressive skill to bring home. She says you won’t have to go far to find people dancing in restaurants, clubs or even in the streets. She recommends hiring an instructor for a couple of lessons, specifically at La Casa del Son, located in Havana.

It's important to choose your items with care

No matter your taste, the writer reminds us that visitors to Cuba can only legally return home with up to $100 worth of Cuban cigars and/or rum, so it’s important to choose your items with care.


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