1. Street performers who stopped us on the street for a serenade session
2. Hotel Ambos Mundos, an old favorite of Ernest Hemmingway
3. The magic of historic plazas at night

In 2004, the movie Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights was released. It was a dud and paled in comparison to the original film. Still, their portrayal of Cuba, especially at night, made me want to visit. It's been a dream destination of mine ever since, and I thank God I got the chance to experience one of those Havana nights for myself. It was nothing like the movie; it was better (surprising how Hollywood fails to accurately capture different cultures on the big screen)(*sarcasm*).

We strolled along cobblestone streets with stray animals crossing our path left and right. We darted in and out of different bars trying signature mojitos and listen to the sounds and rhythms of each corner. Every spot was playing different music, but somehow they all blended together into a single harmonious melody.

The nightclub lines were outrageously long, and since their structures are equipped to handle big crowds, only a few small groups could enter at a time. Eventually we found some steps to sit on (with mojitos in hand) and chatted with a few locals before turning in for the night.


  1. So mojitos are mojitos but can you say that they tasted different in Cuba? Maybe the choice of alcohol made it taste different?

    1. I think it was a mix of the alcohol, the raw sugar, and the attention to detail while making each of them. Every bartender took their time making our mojitos instead of rushing to serve us and other patrons like so many servers in the states do.

  2. Just finished reading through your Cuba posts and it looks like you had a great visit. Love that you were able to connect with the locals (my favorite part about traveling) and also, love that ya'll made a point to go visit a fire station for J. Your comment about Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights totally resonated with me. I think that was my first "exposure" to Cuba as well through the media growing up. :)


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