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The Havana Tour Company

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Havana Comes out to Play: 10 of the Best Places for Nightlife in Cuba

 
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Like many people, you might have scheduled your Cuban getaway to escape from the colder months of your home country. If you’re not used to the heat of Cuba, you might have found the heat of the sun to be somewhat daunting, and you quickly learned why the locals walk around in clothing made from breathable fabrics. Cuba really isn’t a good place for polyester. Whether they’re going out for dinner or for an extended night on the town, Cubans really are an elegant bunch. Sure, you can emulate their style, and you probably should (when in Rome), but you’re at a distinct disadvantage. You can look the part, but do you actually know where to go? Is that bar outside an authentic slice of nightlife in Cuba, or is it a tourist trap? There’s not exactly a shortage of bars and nightlife venues in the country, so if anything, the choice can be a little overwhelming. Not to worry – we’ve got you covered with some of the best destinations for a night on the town.

Nightlife in Cuba: Havana After Dark

Havana Car Pano-L

1. El Floridita

El Floridita (Little Florida) is a Havana landmark, and despite the fact that most other visitors to the country will have the same idea, it really is a must-see. This is the bar where Ernest Hemingway would sit and drink daiquiris for hours on end. Perhaps he came up with some of his most profound lines of prose here, or perhaps he just wanted to get drunk. In any event, you can follow in his footsteps by ordering one of their remarkable concoctions and toasting the great man. Obispo No. 557 esq. a Monserrate, Havana

2. Vista al Golfo

This bar is located in the sumptuous surroundings of the Hotel Nacional de Cuba and generally attracts a more refined crowd. The drinks are fantastic, but the real drawcard of Vista al Golfo when it comes to nightlife in Cuba is the view. The bar looks out over the ocean and it’s simply stunning, particularly when the water is choppy. Calle 21 y O, Vedado, Plaza, Havana

3. Casa de la Música

The “House of Music” is a brilliant spot to mingle with the locals and dance until the sun comes up. The vibe and crowd can vary depending on who’s playing, but this place can really be crazy when the party starts. Remember that the party in question doesn’t start until late, and the main act of the evening generally doesn’t arrive on stage until the wee hours of the morning. Av. 25, esq. 20, Miramar

4. Disco Turquino

It might be called a disco, but this fantastic little venue plays host to authentic Cuban music each and every night. Once the band has finished, the DJ starts and the club turns into a disco as you might know it. Arrive early, since the place can fill up quickly after it opens at 10pm. Calle M, La Habana

5. Club Salseando Chevere

It might seem like a stereotype, but no exploration of nightlife in Cuba is complete without a bit of salsa dancing. Club Salseando Chevere is a combination dance school, theatre and nightclub. You can learn a few steps under the patient supervision of some truly skilled teachers, who will demonstrate their skills later in the evening. After that, it’s a free-for-all and everyone hits the dancefloor. Calle 49 y Av 28, Havana

An Evening in Santiago de Cuba

havanacafe

6. Bello Bar

Located on the 15th floor of the plush Melia Santiago Hotel, this bar actually takes up the whole floor. The views across the city and the harbour are more than worth the realisation that there are cheaper bars in the city. Av. de las Américas at Calle M, Reparto Sueño, Santiago de Cuba

7. Club el Iris

This is where the youngsters of the city come to dance and be seen, and is basically a typical disco with a delightful Cuban flare. It’s mostly filled with locals, which is always a good sign when it comes to nightlife in Cuba. Aguilera #617, Junto a la Plaza de Marte, e/ Bamada and Plácido, Santiago de Cuba

8. San Pedro del Mar

An elegant cabaret club that looks out over the ocean, San Pedro del Mar offers a plan for an entire evening. You can eat, drink, watch the show and then dance. Carretera Morro, km 8, Santiago de Cuba

Party Time in Camagüey

9. El Cambio

A bar that is perfect for when you can’t decide where to go, or when you don’t want to go to bed – El Cambio has been open since 1909 and never closes. An extended party is common with nightlife in Cuba, but most places tend to close… eventually. Calle Martín 152, Camagüey

10. Casa de la Trova

An authentic Cuban night out, Casa de la Trova boasts fantastic live music and nicely priced drinks in a venue that is both relaxed and yet stylish. Salvador Cisneros #171 e / Marti y Cristo, Camaguey

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Daniel Stretton

About Daniel Stretton

Dan is one of the Founders of the Havana Tour Company, along with Romey Chuit who is a Cuban national. A keen traveller, Dan Stretton instantly fell in love with Cuba when visiting for the first time. Despite countless salsa lessons, Dan still struggles to dance like a Cuban (or dance at all for that matter). He has however picked up how to make a scrumptious mojito! Dan is also a keen photographer, looking to capture the heart and soul of the real Cuba and the tours he has helped to create.

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