Travelogue: Havana, Cuba

Havana is a diverse and historic city. I’m eager to visit the old squares and spend time away from the beaches. Yet, I’m travelling with my extended family, and they don’t speak English. This trip will be for their benefit, as we hire a Czech speaking guide and make a plan to see as much as a day will allow.

Little do we know, as we make the two-hour drive from Varadero – we are going to be joining an extra four-thousand tourists who find themselves in port that day. Our luck will have us in town while two massive cruise ships from Mexico offload their passengers for an excursion ashore. Consequently, the influx proves to make sightseeing difficult.


The crowd of tourists in Old Havana. Photo by Adrian J. Miller

Old Havana is small and as a result cannot handle this number of amblers. There seems to be current of moving bodies and I just don’t have the time to resist their flow. The crowd sweeps my family and I along the cobblestone avenues. As a result, I become a little more disenchanted with every step. I’m upset that I am unable to take in the experience of finally being in this space.


The set of a new Fast and Furious movie being shot in Cathedral Square. Photo by Adrian J. Miller

Cathedral Square

There is a fence encircling Cathedral Square. To my surprise, a new Fast and Furious movie is being shot at this location. The Americans are coming back…but their influence has never left. A fact I learn is that their capitol building is identical to the structure in Washington D.C except in one detail: the Cubans have there a building that stands one-foot taller than the American’s. Clever.


El Capital in Havana. Photo by Adrian J. Miller

Our tour is mostly by vehicle – and we zip through most of the city in minutes. I appease myself and feel this is a recognizance trip. Later in the week, my plan is to return with my cousin and we will explore the city in greater detail.


Laundry overhead the streets in Havana. Photo by Adrian J. Miller


Taxi in Havana. Photo by Adrian J. Miller


My Cousin Annika and her coconut drink in Havana. Photo by Adrian J. Miller

Better Luck Next Time

Our luck does not improve.  That evening back in Varadero – my cousin breaks her foot on a dance floor. As such, there will be no return visit to Havana on this trip to Cuba. Another time, perhaps.

Please read on to hear more of our humble thoughts on other places we visit.