Nighttime in El Vedado, Havana

HAVANA TIMES – Despite these images not being taken in the busiest and most crowded area of El Vedado, the desolation they show is striking. A Malecon sea drive with little traffic, hotels almost completely darkened, despite being in the high season, important avenues with few cars. A city like Havana that once had such a vibrant nightlife that made it famous throughout the Americas, today is not even a shadow of what it was; now, the brightest lights are in residential buildings.

It’s not that there’s a lack of recreational and cultural options, although they’re not abundant either; they do exist. It’s the prohibitive prices, transportation difficulties, minimal and inadequate promotion and advertising, but essentially, it’s the apathy and lack of enthusiasm with which life, or survival, is lived nowadays that makes the city at night seem, in some pictures, like a city with scenes from a survival film.

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4 thoughts on “Nighttime in El Vedado, Havana

  • I have been a regular visitor to Havana, and other Cities in Cuba, for the last 22 years. I have
    lovely memories of the Malecon being FULL of people, especially at the bottom of La Rampa, also on the wall on La Rampa in front of Cuban Airline offices
    Different groups, singing, eating, drinking, talking all so happy and very safe. At weekends this would go on to the early hours of the morning. People queuing at Bim Bom, the cafe next to the petrol station. I look back at old photographs and video clips with great fondness. Also this was in the days when mobile phones were a rarity and illegal to own so people did not have a mobile phone attached to their ears. People talked to each other in person, face to face.
    I also remember how you had to wait, sometimes for minutes, before you could cross the road due to the amount of traffic. Now very little traffic, very sad but i still, and always will, visit Havana two or three times a year

  • That is exactly why I like Cuba the peaceful streets…

  • Batista was a ruthless dictator. There’s no question about that. But no one can argue about how alive Havana was in the 1950s. For better or for worse, the Mafia was in charge, and they brought tourism to its height with hotels, clubs, casinos, race tracks etc. I know a lot of the profits did not go to the Cuban people, which is a crime, but Castro has done far more damage to Cuba than Batista could have ever done.

  • Very valuable report. Visitors need to know this is the current situation. Havana the same.

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