Harper's Bazaar share their travel guide to three Cuban cities

Posted: 18-Jul-16 10:02

Cuba has recently become the hotspot of the Caribbean. Taking notice of its up and coming popularity for A-listers and commoners alike, Harper's Bazaar magazine recently published a detailed guide to lead travellers through some of the island's enchanting cities. Trinidad, Cienfuegos and the capital, Havana are all faithfully portrayed.

Harper's Bazaar  share their travel guide to three Cuban cities

Many capital transformations are taking place in Cuba. In recent years, the island has agreed to a more flexible economy and started to open up to trade and small private businesses like casas particulares (private B&B’s) and "paladares" (private restaurants). Moreover, the country has kept moving forward as it began normalize diplomatic relationships with the US after President Obama announced his intentions of re-establishing harmonic bonds between the two countries on December 2014.

As the island opens up to the world, international VIPs have been visiting and many more are eager to do so. From superstar power couple Beyonce Knowles and Jay Z to rock legends the Rolling Stones, Cuba is on A-listers spotlight. The trendy fashion magazine, Harper’s Bazaar didn’t take long to notice and writer Caroline Lewis shared her experience and offered a guide through three of Cuba’s most mesmerizing cities: Trinidad, Cienfuegos and the capital, Havana.

Starting off from Trinidad, a true jewel filled with well-preserved colonial architecture, a lively yet peaceful ambiance takes over. Harper Bazaar advices to commence your trip by hopping inside a fifty’s car (almendron) touring the historic part of the city and observing the beauty of colonial houses painted in a variety of pastel colours. After the night falls, head down to the Casa de la Musica and enjoy the contagious beats of Salsa music as you sip on excellent 3$ mojitos. You won’t be able to help succumbing to the Latin rhythm as the night goes by.

Next, drive to Cienfuegos, an immaculate city facing the Caribbean Sea, known as the Pearl of the South. Cienfuegos, one of the chief seaports of Cuba, is a centre of the sugar trade as well as coffee and tobacco. Near the entrance to Bahia de Cienfuegos (bahia meaning "bay") is Castillo de Jagua (full name: Castillo de Nuestra Señora de los Angeles de Jagua), a fortress erected in 1745 for protection against Caribbean pirates. While sugarcane is the chief crop, local farmers also grow coffee. Although not as lively and cheery as Trinidad, in Lewis’ words:

"There are fine examples of French colonial architecture including the powder-blue Ferrer Palace and the grand city hall.”

Havana, the capital will definitely be the highlight of your trip. Buzzing with life, music, culture and enthusiastic about a promising future with the changes taking place in the island, Havana exudes today a unique energy that will capture you the moment you arrive.

Try delicious cocktails at hot new bars and restaurants like the private El Chanchullero on Teniente Rey street, but don’t miss the experience of visiting the famed Floridita bar where tempting daiquiris are served just the way Ernest Hemingway liked them. For a singular dining experience, visit La Guarida restaurant. Set in a crumbling mansion yet serving some of the most delicious dishes nationwide, this private venue is a charming spot where many celebrities have enjoyed delightful meals, including Naomi Campbell, Prince Albert of Monaco and Jack Nicholson as previous patrons.

No trip to the capital would be complete without visiting its amazing UNESCO World Heritage Site, Old Havana. Explore each charming corner of Latin America’s most well-preserved example of Spanish colonial architecture and appreciate the contrast with other nearby buildings that appear on the verge of collapse. Continue your journey in an “almendron” after sunset and transport yourself back in time. Feel the sea breeze as you drive past the mesmerizing Malecon seawall, admire the beauty of Vedado’s former mansions and the imposing hill the renowned Hotel Nacional is set upon.

Though change is inevitably coming to Cuba, Harper’s Bazaar truly hopes the nation doesn’t neglect their brave and vibrant past, which has made them a truly unique country everyone should get the chance to visit.


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