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The best of Cuba
Even for seasoned world travelers, Cuba is still a bit of a mystery. This island nation, just 90 miles from the United States, seems not only a world away, but an entire half-century away as well. From the classic cars in the capitol to the pastoral living in the countryside, Cuba has staved off the invasion of commercial tourism that other parts of the Caribbean have felt. And even as eased restrictions on Americans have seen mass tourism creep in, the place is still fascinatingly unique. Because it’s so different from the rest of the world, visitors’ main problem is finding the best things to see and do in Cuba once they arrive. We’re here to help; from the old world architecture, must-try restaurants and cabaret shows of Havana to the pristine beaches and tobacco farms of the countryside, there are the sites you need to see in Cuba. Done something on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutDoList and tag @TimeOutEverywhere. Find out more about how Time Out selects the very best things to do all over the world.
Change is rippling through Cuba’s dining scene. The island’s cuisine has long suffered a dismal reputation, which is unsurprising after the food-rationing days of the Special Period. But thanks to a recent reversal of the laws prohibiting private businesses, there’s been an explosion of paladares (home-run restaurants) building up a buzz around “nouveau Cuban” cuisine. Havana leads the charge, offering everything from fine dining in palatial old apartments to hipster tapas bars. Navigating the food and drink scene is one of the best things to do in Cuba. But also snatch up any chance to dine in your casa particular (home stay), where it’s all about robust slow-cooked stews like ropa viega (shredded beef) and epic tropical fruit breakfasts.