Havana: A Quick Glimpse

CubaFrom my hotel room window, Havana looks like any big city, sprawling and busy.

CubaWhen you wander out, however, the street scene takes on a life of its own.  First thing you notice is the cars, old American made ones from the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s.    Someone told me there are about 50,000 of them in Cuba which makes it a veritable car museum!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACubaIt’s not at all unusual to see a hood lifted, the driver pouring in a quart of oil or fiddling with the spark plugs or whatever.   And the interiors are real throwbacks….no automatic windows, sophisticated sound systems, luxurious finishes here.

CubaOmigosh, this one is identical to my first car which was pretty old when I got it.    Do you think it possible that old Chevvy ended up here?

CubaAs fascinating as the cars were the people.  I generally don’t take a lot of people pics, but I couldn’t help myself this time, and you can probably see why.  I mean how often do you see a woman smoking a cigar

Cubaor such a dapper gentleman strolling the sidewalk?  Of course, when he noticed I had snapped his photo, he subtly held out his hand.  Remember, it’s possible to make more money posing for photos than working in a professional capacity.

CubaCubaCubaCubaHad I been able to wander I do believe I could have captured people enough for a book.

CubaThese guys would definitely be in it 

Cubaif for no reason other than their ingenious chessboard!  Necessity is, indeed, the mother of invention.


CubaCubaCubaOld cemeteries fascinate me, so a visit to the Christopher Columbus Cemetery (no, he’s not buried there) was a favorite stop.   If you’ve ever visited Recoleta in Buenos Aires, you will be reminded of it.   In fact, I’m not sure this one isn’t even more lovely with its stained glass windows, interesting shapes

Cubaand beautiful carved sculptures such as this version of the Pieta. 

CubaBecause this is a much visited site, it is one of the places being refurbished by the government.  The result is a sparkling wonder.

CubaFor book lovers, the square in Old Havana is filled with volumes, old and new.  A collector would have a field day visiting here, that is if he were interested in Spanish language books.  Every  vendor appeared to have copies of Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea which was inspired by Cuban fishermen.  I’m now wishing I had bought an old copy.

CubaFor years, the Tropicana Club has been a favorite of visitors to Cuba, so how could it be left out?  

CubaCubaCubaCubaSitting under the moon and the stars,  we were treated to a Las Vegas style extravaganza all performed to Latin rhythms.

There is more to Havana than meets the eye here, but it’s impossible to share it all nor did we see it all as so much of our visit was limited.   Hmmm, wonder if that’s reason to go back another time!

i so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind


Anything Blue Friday

18 thoughts on “Havana: A Quick Glimpse

  1. Went there in October and, like you, was fascinated with everything we saw – cars, beautiful old colonial buildings, lovely people. So glad I came across your blog as it’s brought it all back. Much better pics than mine! Thank you.

  2. I was wondering about the gleaming statuary. Looks like a truly fascinating city to visit.

  3. The photograph of gentleman in white pants is perfect.

  4. I loved Havana, just loved it – the old buildings, the sea, the cigars, the history, the climate! I stayed at the Nacional, what a hoot that was in those big old rooms, graced by so many people. Brings back a lot of happy memories x

  5. Those old cars are fascinating, I would have never guessed that many were still putting around. Love the ingenuity of the chessboard 🙂

  6. I would have loved seeing those old cars. I wouldn’t mind a travel trip there at all.

  7. Great pictures… Thanks for sharing…

  8. Linda, I enjoyed so much reading and looking at your pictures. (Yes, those cigars!) People are interesting, that’s for sure. Anyway, I had no idea they have our old cars… 🙂 Blessings~

  9. HOw fortunate you got to visit Cuba. Thanks for sharing your photos. Like a look back in time.

  10. This is SO COOL!!! Wowl…what a throwback! The atmosphere in your photos reminds me of “The Godfather, Part 2” when Michael was in Havana. Same cars then and now! 🙂

    I remember smoking cigars back in the 90s when it was in vogue to go to cigar bars. I never inhaled (hmmm….does that sound familiar? 😉 ), but it was fun just to get together with friends and do fun stuff that was way outside my wheelhouse.

    This was an incredible experience for you to visit Cuba, I’m sure. I know not many people from the States have that opportunity. What a neat look into another side of life…so close and yet so far.

  11. The photos are all fascinating, the cars! omg, amazing, the chess board and the cigar! you really captured the essence I think with just a few photos~really enjoyed this, thank you!

  12. Wow, those cars are so well taken care of…they look new. Love the photos of the locals. Thanks for sharing, Linda.

  13. Viewing your pics are fascinating. Hope you have more.

  14. Wow. All those old cars. I suppose “when in Rome” a cigar would have been in order!
    Fabulous photos…

    1. I saw lots of cigars but didn’t see too many people smoking them.

  15. Aah Linda.. thanks for this fascinating insight into Cuba.. hope you got to ‘do’ a cigar?.. even if it was just rolling one x love the old cars .. keep those gorgeous pics coming.. great people pics! xx j

  16. My husband would love those cars! It looks like a beautiful and interesting place to visit…

    1. Interesting on so many levels.

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