Beach Time! Playa del Este, Cuba

Beaches are a major reason why so many of us northerners flock to Cuba. In fact, most visitors tend to eschew much of the country and only go to the Varadero region or to one of the many Cayo *SomethingOrOther*. But it actually doesn’t have to be an all or nothing situation which is exactly what the Cayos and Varadero are – once you’re there, you’re generally stuck in the middle of nowhere with hundreds of other holidaymakers. If you’re like me and prefer things to be a little less touristy or prefer not to spend the whole vacation...

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Havana’s Malecón

Havana is a fantastic city to indulge in a bit of people watching. One area that is especially good for this is the Malecón, a seawall that goes for 8km along the coast of Havana. Its original purpose was to protect the city from possible rising waters but today it also serves a secondary purpose: a place for people to hang out! You’ll come across people catching a tender moment together, friends chatting away, fishermen fishing, children playing games, solitary people enjoying the sea air, daredevils jumping off the wall into the sea, and possibly various transactions of all...

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Havana: Plaza de la Catedral

One of the things that make Havana a lovely place to just wander around is that it has many plazas. One of the plazas is the Plaza de la Catedral in Old Havana. It doesn’t look it now, but the plaza was once the site of a swamp. For some reason, plans to build a plaza went ahead and the area was drained. However, during the rainy season each year, water levels rose and the swamp tried its best to make a comeback…so much so, the original name of the plaza was apparently Plaza de la Ciénaga (Swamp Square)....

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Political Slogans in Havana

A wander around Havana, and Cuba itself, can uncover a treasure trove of socialist slogans. They are quite the variety, ranging from freehand painted to stencils to actual billboards. I may have been a tad inappropriately excited each time I found a slogan but in my defense, Cuba was my first visit to a non-democratic country and I was interested in seeing evidence of a different way of doing politics. In my opinion, whether or not you agree with Cuba’s politics, the political slogans are fascinating as they demonstrate something not usual in this world of ours. I, for...

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Havana: Morro-La Cabaña Historical Military Park

One of the important pieces of Havana history is Morro-La Cabaña Historical Military Park, a huge fortress complex. It had important roles to play in Cuba’s colonial history, being the largest defensive complex in the Americas. Today, the fortress is more appreciated for being a visually appealing piece of architecture, it being rather prominent on the Havana skyline along the water. The Morro Castle part was built by 1589 and the La Cabaña was built later, in the 18th century. The complex, along with Old Havana, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are two ways one can get...

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Che Guevara – Yea or Nay?

A visit to Havana means seeing evidence of Che Guevara pretty much everywhere. However, if you want more substance than just the usual victorious revolution slogans, you should visit the little museum that’s located near Morro Castle dedicated to Che and his revolutionary life. Getting there can be a bit of an adventure – first you have to find a taxi that will actually take you. Some won’t as the trip involves going through a tunnel and apparently, there are rules about what kind of taxi can go through it. I ended up on the best taxi ever –...

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Five Things to do in Pinar del Rio, Cuba

Visitors to Cuba tend to stick with places like Varadero, one of the many “Cayo” islands, or Havana. However, there are many other places to check out on this beautiful island nation and it is unfortunate more people don’t spread the love. I spent a day in the region of Pinar del Río and the only thing I regret was not being able to have more time there! Pinar del Río is one of the provinces of Cuba and it is located in the west of the island. The landscape is pretty unique, being made up of red earth,...

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Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón (Havana)

Morbid. Creepy. Romantic. Peaceful. There are many adjectives used to describe cemeteries. I know some people dislike these places and some are even afraid of them. But me, I love old cemeteries – the older the better. I love the stillness and the history. Whenever I visit a new town or city, I try to find out if there are any old cemeteries around. Havana was no different. Finding the Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón was one of the highlights of my visit to Havana. Colón, founded in 1876, is located in the neighbourhood of Vedado, Havana. It’s huge –...

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Havana’s Plaza de Armas Book Market

Being a bibliophile with a love of antiques, when I heard that Havana had a book market several times a week, I just knew I had to go. It was located in the Plaza de Armas, part of the UNESCO heritage site of Old Havana. The plaza was constructed in the 16th century and was apparently originally used for military events and government ceremonies. Today, it is a beautiful square, a place where the pen is centre stage rather than the sword. Any book lover will enjoy spending an hour or so just browsing the rather random selection available....

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Who Am I?

My name is Kendra and I am a cubicle escape artist: I try to find ways to keep my job which is in a cubicle while also trying to escape it as often as possible.

When I travel, I’m generally that solo female you see wandering with a camera firmly clutched to her face as she traipses around while narrowly avoiding being hit by some form of local transportation.

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