Travelling with Teenagers: Things to do in Havana

By: Claire Bullen

January 17, 2014

While many of Cuba’s best-known and loved attributes are anything but family-friendly (cigars, rum, raucous salsa dens”¦), there are still plenty of things to do in Havana while travelling with teenagers. Offering a compelling mix of dilapidated yet beautiful historic sites, pretty beaches, and rich culture, the city has tons of cool places to interest the whole family.


Catch a baseball game


Travelling with Teenagers | Things to Do in Havana | Baseball

‘Béisbol’ is one of Cuba’s most popular activities © advencap

Baseball might be the American “˜national pastime,’ but Cubans love it too. Known as “˜béisbol’ here, the sport first made its way to Cuban shores in the 1860s. Home to a number of top athletes today, Havana hosts the popular Industriales team. During the season, head to the Estadio Latinoamericano to see these talented players in action.


Go on a classic car tour of the city


Travelling with Teenagers | Things to Do in Havana | Classic Cars

Havana is one of the best places in the world to see vintage cars on the streets © iStock/Thinkstock

One of the more iconic images associated with the city, Havana’s painstakingly preserved, colourful retro cars have been considered a Cuban emblem for quite some time. Dating from the 50s and early 60s, before the Cuban-US embargo, these vehicles offer a glimpse into Havana’s past. Visitors can opt to rent one of these máquinas (drivers included) for a fantastic perspective on the Cuban capital.


See some art


Travelling with Teenagers | Things to Do in Havana | Callejon de Hamel

The colourful Callejon de Hamel is the perfect place to spot Cuban street art © David González Romero

Teens with an artistic streak won’t want to miss the Callejon de Hamel in central Havana. The street is lined with colourful murals by Havana-based graffiti artist Salvador Gonzáles Escalona, known for his Afro-Cuban style of painting. Come during the week for a quieter look, or at the weekend to see the art alongside a soundtrack of upbeat rumba, courtesy of local street musicians.


Head to the beach


Travelling with Teenagers | Things to Do in Havana | Playas del Este

Havana’s Playas del Este offer paradisiacal white sand and clear water © iStock/Thinkstock

The beautiful beaches on the eastern edge of Havana, known collectively as the Playas del Este, offer a glimpse of paradise. The soft white sand and clear blue waters stretch for miles, and, while they’re comfortable for tourists, the area is still heavily populated by locals and has an authentic Cuban atmosphere. The waters here are almost always warm and pleasant, so make sure to take a dip.


Sample some chocolate


Travelling with Teenagers | Things to Do in Havana | Museo del Chocolate

Take a break in the Museo del Chocolate for a tasty treat © advencap

Though it’s billed as a museum, the Museo del Chocolate is more café than collection. Come expecting smaller facilities (and no entry fee), and you’ll be rewarded by a number of locally made, tasty treats. From chocolate milkshakes to truffles, hot chocolate to candies, this indulgent stop is a must-visit for those with a sweet tooth.


Virgin Atlantic operate direct flights to Havana from London Gatwick. Book your flight today.


Have you travelled to Havana with teenagers? What were your family’s favourite things to do in the city? Share with us in the comments below.

Written by Claire Bullen

Claire Bullen

Claire Bullen

Claire is a born globetrotter: before relocating to London, she spent time in New York, Paris, Philadelphia, Chicago, and San Francisco. When she's not in pursuit of the next exciting meal, she can be found haunting indie bookstores and sketching outdoors. Follow Claire @ClaireMBullen

Categories: Our Places