Uncovering Havana's Local Scene
Discover the vibrant local art scene, cozy cafes and bookstores, neighborhood markets, and intimate live music venues in Havana.
Havana is a city wealthy in artistic expression, and exploring its hidden art studios, galleries, and street art hubs is a must for any art enthusiast.
The Taller Experimental de Gráfica is a true gem tucked away in the heart of the city. As you walk through the streets of Old Havana, you'll stumble upon this hidden oasis of creativity. The workshop is filled with bustling artists, each engrossed in their craft. The gallery space, on the other hand, is a calm environment where you can admire the finished artworks. The prints available for purchase range from vibrant and colorful to thought-provoking and abstract, showcasing the diversity of Cuban printmaking. Whether you're an art collector or simply appreciate the beauty of artistic expression, a visit to the Taller Experimental de Gráfica is a must when exploring Havana's local scene.
More about Cuba's art here.
Cozy Cafés and Bookstores
When you need a break from the bustling tourist areas, Havana offers charming cafes and bookshops where you can relax and immerse yourself in the local literary scene.
Café O'Reilly is one of those places. As you step inside, you're greeted by a cozy atmosphere and the aroma of freshly brewed Cuban coffee. It's the perfect spot to unwind, enjoy a cup of coffee, and delve into a captivating book.
Another delightful spot for bookworms is La Librería, a quaint bookstore located in Vedado. This charming bookstore specializes in Cuban literature, offering a wide range of books that reflect the rich literary heritage of the country. As you browse through the shelves, you can sip on a delicious coffee and discover new authors or find old favorites. The staff at La Librería are knowledgeable and passionate about literature, making it a haven for book lovers seeking a unique and authentic experience in Havana.
If you want an introduction to Cuban literature, you can check here.
For those seeking unique souvenirs and handmade crafts, Havana's neighborhood markets are the perfect place to explore. One market that stands out is Feria de la Artesanía, held in Plaza de la Catedral. This vibrant market is a treasure trove of local artistry and craftsmanship. Local artisans proudly display their handmade crafts and artworks, ranging from ceramics and textiles to paintings and sculptures. It's a wonderful opportunity to directly support local artists and take home a piece of Cuban culture.
As you wander through Feria de la Artesanía, you'll be captivated by the vibrant colors and intricate details of the crafts on display. Each item tells a story and reflects the talent and creativity of the artisans. Whether you're looking for a unique piece of jewelry, a handwoven rug, or a beautifully painted artwork, you're sure to find something that catches your eye. The market atmosphere is lively, with artisans eagerly sharing the stories behind their creations. Don't miss the chance to engage with the local community and discover the hidden gems of Havana's neighborhood markets.
Live Music in Intimate Venues
While Havana is known for its vibrant music scene, there are also intimate venues where you can experience authentic Cuban music away from the crowds. One such venue is Jazz Café, located in Vedado. This cozy spot is a haven for jazz lovers and music enthusiasts. As you step inside, you'll be greeted by the soulful melodies of live jazz performances, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.
Jazz Café features talented local musicians who masterfully play a range of genres, from traditional Cuban jazz to contemporary fusion. The intimate setting allows you to truly connect with the music and appreciate the skill and passion of the performers. Whether you're a seasoned jazz aficionado or simply enjoy good music, a visit to Jazz Café will transport you to the heart of Havana's rich musical heritage.