Cuba, the pearl of the Caribbean, is not only known for its white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. It also highlights its rich history that is reflected in its streets, buildings and historical monuments. From the colonial era to the Revolution, every corner of the island tells a fascinating story. Next, We will explore some of the most notable historical places in Cuba.

We have divided the article by areas of the island. You will see that Most historical treasures are concentrated in the capital, Havana.. But there are many more interesting cities for history lovers!

Before embarking on your historical adventure in Cuba, we recommend Go with an open mind and a desire to hear stories from the locals. Stopping on the street to talk to strangers was the best part of our trip to Cuba. They told us lots of fascinating anecdotes and personal stories! A great way to meet local people is staying in private homes and eating in the typical palates.

Beyond the historical places in Cuba that we share immediately, You should not miss these 22 essential places to see on the island. And if you are planning your trip, remember to process your visa for Cuba well in advance!

Contents of this article



1. Old Havana, World Heritage Site

Construction: Century XVI

Let’s start our trip in the capital, more specifically in the Old Havana neighborhood. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, this ancient city is a living testimony of Spanish colonial architecture. Cobblestone streets, charming squares and imposing fortresses like the Castillo de la Real Fuerza tell the story of the first days of colonization in the New World. Walk through its narrow streets and don’t miss the St. Christopher’s Cathedralan architectural gem dating back to the 18th century.

Guide to visiting Havana:

The architecture of Old Havana along with the vintage cars create a super photogenic setting

2. The National Capitol

Year of construction: 1929

Inspired by the Capitol in Washington DC, the National Capitol is an architectural landmark that has witnessed significant changes in Cuban history. Initially the seat of the government, today it houses the Cuban Academy of Sciences. Explore its majestic halls and see the iconic statue of the Republic in the Hall of Lost Steps.

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The beautiful Capitol of Havana, one of the most famous historical places in Cuba

3. National Museum of Fine Arts, temple of culture in Havana

Year of construction: 1954

The National Museum of Fine Arts is a cultural gem that houses an impressive collection of Cuban and international art. Explore its galleries to discover paintings, sculptures and prints ranging from the colonial period to the present day. Furthermore, the building itself is an architectural masterpiece.

4. Revolution Square

Year of construction: 1952 (Monument to Jos矇 Mart穩)

The Plaza de la Revoluci籀n is an emblematic place that has witnessed key events in the modern history of Cuba. In the center of the square is the Monument to Jos矇 Mart穩, an icon of Cuban independence. Also highlights the Ministry of the Interior with the famous Che Guevara mural. This space symbolizes the struggle and resistance of the Cuban people.

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Che, in the iconic Plaza de la Revoluci籀n

5. Great Theater of Havana and National Theater, historical places in Cuba with a lot of artistic splendor

Year of construction: Great Theater of Havana in 1914; National Theater in 1979

Across the street from the famous Capitol you will find the imposing Gran Teatro de La Habana. It is a cultural monument that has played a crucial role in the Cuban art scene since its inauguration. As a curiosity, the neobaroque style construction was financed by the Cuban rum company Bacardi. Since it opened its doors in 1914 it has been the headquarters of the National Ballet of Cuba and the home of opera in the country.

On the other hand, the National Theater of Cuba has a much more sober architectural style, but it is still a place worth visiting. Designed to host large artistic events, the theater has been the scene of countless productions and significant events in the history of Cuba.

If you have the chance, Attend a performance in one of these spaces to experience the country’s rich artistic tradition.

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The incredible Grand Theater of Havana is even more impressive at night

6. Fortress of San Carlos de la Caba簽a, night watch

Year of construction: 1774

Located in the entrance to the port of Havanathe San Carlos de la Caba簽a Fortress is one of the largest fortresses in the Americas. Built to protect the city from possible invasions, today it is a museum that offers a fascinating insight into Cuban military history. Don’t miss the traditional cannon shot ceremony which takes place every night.

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The imposing fortress to protect Havana from attacks by sea

7. Palace of the Captains General, essential part of colonial architecture

Year of construction: 1792

Built as the residence of the Captain General, this majestic building is an outstanding example of colonial architecture. Today it houses the City Museum, which exhibits art and artifacts that tell the history of Havana. Explore its patios full of vegetation, halls and gardens to immerse yourself in colonial life.

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The patio is incredibly pretty!

8. Palace of Crafts, cultural treasure

Year of construction: 1780

Located in the former Palacio del Segundo Cabo, the Palacio de la Artesan穩a is a fascinating place to explore Cuban crafts. Discover masterpieces by local artists and take with you authentic memories of your visit to Cuba. The beautiful building combines European and Cuban architectural styles. Its white fa癟ade with blue windows attracts a lot of attention. Very cool!

9. National Museum of Music, a historical place in Cuba for music lovers

Year of construction: 1720

Located in the Palace of the Counts of Casa Bayona, this museum pays tribute to Cuba’s rich musical tradition. Explore exhibitions dedicated to the evolution of Cuban music, from African influences to contemporary music. The building itself is an architectural masterpiece that will transport you back in time.

10. Ernest Hemingway Museum, an essential visit for inveterate readers

Year of construction: 1886

The Finca Vig穩awhere Ernest Hemingway lived, is now a museum that preserves the legacy of the famous writer. Explore the house where Hemingway wrote some of his best-known works, such as The Old Man and the Sea. Discover his rooms, his ship Pilar and the beautiful gardens that inspired him.


11. Historic center of Trinidad, a trip back in time

Construction: century XVI

Head to the south of the island and you will find Trinidad, a city that seems frozen in time. Their Cobblestone streets and colorful colonial houses will transport you to the 16th century. Visit the Plaza Mayor, surrounded by the Parish Church of the Holy Trinity and the Palacio Cantero, which now houses the Romantic Museum.

15 things to see and do in Trinidad

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The streets of the historic center of Trinidad are super colorful

12. Valle de los Ingenios, testimony of the sugar past

Years of greatest influence of the sugar industry: XIX century

Head to the Valle de los Ingenios, near Trinidad, to immerse yourself in Cuba’s sugar history. Discover the old sugar plantations, watchtowers and colonial mansions that narrate the period of splendor of the sugar industry in the 19th century. The Valley of the Ingenios is a World Heritage Site and a window to the island’s economic past.

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The beautiful landscape full of vegetation in the Valley of the Ingenios | 穢 Ivan2010


13. Castle of San Pedro de la Roca

Year of construction: 1700

Located on a hill overlooking the Caribbean Sea, the Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca, also known as El Morro, is a imposing fortress built to defend against pirates. Enjoy the impressive Panoramic views and explore its historic halls as you immerse yourself in Cuba’s maritime history.

14. Hermitage of Caridad del Cobre, a historical place in Cuba of great spiritual value

Year of construction: originally in 1612, current building from 1927

Located in the mountains of the Sierra Maestra, the Ermita de la Caridad del Cobre is an important place of pilgrimage and a national symbol. The Virgin of Charity is the patron saint of Cuba, and the sanctuary has been a witness to historical and cultural moments. Enjoy the serenity of the environment and learn about the deep spiritual connection of Cubans with the Virgin.


15. Cienfuegos: the Pearl of the South

Foundation: XIX century

Known as the Pearl of the South, Cienfuegos is a port city with a unique urban planning that combines French and Spanish influences. Explore the Jos矇 Mart穩 Park, the Cathedral of the Pur穩sima Concepci籀n and the Palacio de Valleall with a rich history that reflects the cultural diversity of the region.

15 things to see and do in Cienfuegos

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The cathedral of Cienfuegos next to a classic car

16. Camag羹ey, labyrinthine city with colonial charm

Foundation: century XVI

Camag羹ey is known for its intricate urban design that resembles a labyrinth. Explore your narrow alleys and charming squares, where every corner tells a story. The city has resisted pirate attacks and has preserved its colonial architecture. Visit the Carmen Square and the Church of Our Lady of Solitude to immerse yourself in local history.


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