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Arts & Culture

Santiago is famous for its rich history, distinct culture and vibrant music scene. Explore castles, cathedrals and colonial casas that are almost 500 years old. Relive the region’s heroic military exploits. Wander the picturesque streets of the old French quarter. Take in a performance by the world-renowned dance troupe, the Ballet Folkórico Cutumba. And by all means, check out the music on Heredia Street.

Architecture

Parque Histórico-Militar El Morro

The best time to visit this magnificent 17th century castle overlooking Santiago Bay is at dusk, when uniformed soldiers fire a canon.

Basílica de Nuestra Señora de la Caridad del Cobre

Climb to the top of the chapel here to visit the famous La Virgen, a small statue found floating in the bay during a storm in the 1600s. This church is a sacred pilgrimage site situated on a hill 20 km northwest of Santiago.

Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción

Although not the original cathedral erected on this site in the 1520s, this beautiful church, built in 1922, is one of the city’s most important (and impressive) religious buildings.

Casa de Diego Velázquez

The oldest house in Cuba, this residence was built in 1522 to house Cuba’s first governor, Diego Velázquez.

Parque Céspedes

Visit the historically significant buildings that encircle this bustling square, including the Catedral de la Asunción and the Casa de Diego Velázquez.

Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca del Morro

UNESCO called this World Heritage Site the “most complete and best-preserved example of Spanish-military architecture based on Italian and Renaissance design principles.”

Plaza de la Revolución

Gaze up at this plaza’s centrepiece: an imposing statue of war hero General Antonio Maceo.

Cementerio Santa Ifigenia

Pay your respects to Cuban military heroes Carlos Manuel de Céspedes and José Martí at this ornate cemetery.

The Moncada Barracks

This former military enclave has been converted into a school, and is also home to the revolutionary museum, the Museo Histórico 26 de Julio.


Dance

Ballet Folkórico Cutumba

Ballet Folkórico Cutumba

This world-renowned touring dance company was founded in 1960, and has performed all over the globe. Enjoy their unique brand of Afro-Cuban-Franco-Haitian folkórico at the Teatro Galaxia or the Teatro Oriente.


Museums

Museo Emilio Bacardí

Museo Emilio Bacardí

This is one of Cuba’s oldest museums, founded in 1899 by Emilio Bacardí y Moreau. Admire the extensive collection of mementos from Bacardi’s travels, including Cuba’s only Egyptian mummy.


Sports

Estadio de Béisbol Guillermón Moncada

Baseball is hugely popular in Cuba. See why when you take the family out to a game at this stadium located on the northeastern side of Santiago.