Cuba’s capital city needs little introduction. Truly one of a kind, this colourful and vivacious place feels like a moving time capsule – one that has retained its Fifties glamour despite decades of hurricanes and hard living. Havana’s rich and tumultuous history has produced a distinct and alluring city of neighbourhoods, shaped by 500 years of Spanish, African, Caribbean and American colonization and trade.
Long known as the Key to the New World, Havana was first established in 1514 along Cuba’s southern coast, followed by two attempted establishments on the island’s north shore. In 1519 the city moved to its current location near a deep harbour and protected channel, becoming a top port for the Spanish empire and official capital of Cuba in 1607. (more…)
By the time I was born, Cuba for my family had evolved into an elaborate fairytale, replete with its castles, heroes and monsters. I suppose that with its chief antagonist perpetually clad in green, the mythical land even had its dragon. With only 27 years having passed since their departure and my birth, the grudges were still very much alive and the scars fresh – these things tend to persist longer than normal according to Cuban tradition.