Remnant of one of Havana's old city walls. Photo © Christopher P. Baker.

Havana’s City Walls

Learn the story of Havana’s massive, fortified city walls, began on February 3, 1674, finished 1697, and demolished 1863. Today, only fragments remain scattered along the boundaries of the old city.

Coffee seedlings in Maricao, Puerto Rico.

Explore Puerto Rico’s Coffee Trail

The gourmet coffee trade has exploded in Puerto Rico, recalling the island’s heyday as a major exporter of the product during the 19th century. Today, historic coffee haciendas are reopening and new coffee farms are being established throughout the Cordillera Central. Here are some great ones to visit for their tours and museums, and festivals and events too.

Mobster Meyer Lansky's Hotel Habana Riviera. Photo © Christopher P. Baker.

Sights Along The Malecón in Havana

The Malecón runs along the bulging, wave-battered shorefront of northern Vedado, Havana, and is home to a handful of impressive cultural sights. Among them are the fascinating Hotel Nacional, with its mobster-speckled history, and other historic monuments and sites.

Torre Observación lookout tower in Bosque Estatal de Toro Negro.

Four-Day Travel Itinerary: Cordillera Central, Puerto Rico

As enticing as Puerto Rico’s beaches are, there are plenty of reasons to spend time in the Cordillera Central, the island’s interior mountain range. This four-day travel itinerary allows you to explore the area’s gorgeous tropical jungle, hiking trails, natural pools, and indigenous culture.

Cannons and cannonballs are used as traffic barricades on Calle Mercaderes in Havana, Cuba.

A Walk Down Calle Mercaderes, Havana

Cobbled Calle Mercaderes between Obispo and Plaza Vieja is full of museums, art and rare collections galleries, beautiful architecture, and handmade goods such as traditional fragrances and Spanish fans. A walk along the street can easily take a full day or more if you stop to see all there is to see.

View inside Iglesias Nuestra Senora de la Merced. Photo © Christopher P. Baker.

The Churches of Southern Habana Vieja

The southern half of Habana Vieja, south of Calle Brasil, was the ecclesiastical center of Havana during the colonial era and is studded with churches and convents. For those interested in architecture and history, a visit to this area is a must.

Plaza Vieja at night. Photo © Christopher P. Baker.

Sights in Plaza Vieja, Havana

The last of the four main squares to be laid out in Habana Vieja, Plaza Vieja’s restoration has made it home to boutiques, restaurants, museums, and luxury apartments for foreign residents. Fans of art and architecture will definitely want to spend some time here, while casual visitors will find plenty to hold their interests in the plaza’s sights.

Facing the Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco de Asís, cobbled Calle Oficios is lined with 17th-century colonial buildings.

Sights Along Havana’s Calle Oficios

Cobbled Calle Oficios is lined with 17th-century colonial buildings that possess a marked Mudejar style, exemplified by their wooden balconies. Many buildings have been converted into cultural venues such as museums, art galleries, and performance spaces. A stroll along this street is a must for fans of architecture and history.

The exclusive Club Habana, a two-story colonial building with a volleyball net in the sand.

Where to Go in Havana: Municipio of Playa

Here’s where to go in the Havana municipio of Playa, including all the highlights of quasi-capitalist Miramar; Jaimanitas, where Castro’s main residence is kept; Cubanacán, home of the premier cigar factory in Cuba, and more, plus tips on finding your way around.