Take A Trip To Havana with NY1/Spectrum News’ Noami Yane! (PART I)By Naomi Yane | June 7, 2017 | Travel
Hey Divas! We’re so excited to welcome the newest “Gal” to our team: Noami Yane!
Naomi is a traffic reporter for Spectrum News. She is a New York native with roots in The Democratic Republic of the Congo and speaks four languages – no wonder she loves to travel.
Naomi is taking us all on a journey to … Cuba! Read her adventure right here on DivaGalsDaily.com!
Imagine being stuck inside a postcard, forever immortalized and on display…
Being in Cuba makes that very much a reality. From the old school cars to the colorful buildings you’re transported to a much simpler time, a time before Starbucks lived on every corner and we had the constant need for likes.
Cuba is indeed a magical place, if you can tear yourself away from your first world needs. I recently visited Cuba with three girlfriends and during our time there we all agreed to disconnect. We were based in Havana — our Air B & B was located in Koli, a picturesque neighborhood in Playa and our host Reiner was tops! Every morning Reiner cooked us breakfast and set us up for our day! Unfortunately he didn’t speak English but luckily one of our travel mates spoke Spanish.
It didn’t take us long to realize why this place was special. We’ve traveled long, far and well, and none of the places we’d been could compare. The nightlife is electrifying and captivating. Every restaurant has live music making it an instant party!
Old Havana is truly a gem with its narrow cobblestone streets and welcoming faces. We spent our first night circling the busy streets of Old Havana like every other tourist. Unbound by itineraries we found ourselves smack in the middle of a dance party on Calle Obispo in front of Bosque Bologna (best pina colada’s I’ve ever had). No cover necessary and no purchase necessary; we enjoyed the music from just outside the restaurant.
Day 2 consisted of most things touristic. Our first stop was the historic Plaza de la Revolution where many political rallies have taken place and several government buildings are located. Most recognizable is the Ministry of Interior building with the likeness of Che Guevara; who was a hero of the Cuban Revolution.
Just across the street is the José Martí memorial and museum. Insert history lesson: José was a writer and like Che Guevara, was/is considered a Cuban national hero.
Honestly speaking, we skipped the museum part of the tour (for time sake) and went straight up to the mirador for a 360 view of Havana!
On the ground at each viewing point in the mirador, are compasses pointing to various cities and countries in the world in that specific direction. NYC!! “…the hottest spot north of Havana!”
From the Plaza we took an old-fashionedtaxicab ride back to Old Havana for lunch.
One of my favorite things to do when traveling is to sample the local cuisine, more specifically street food! I wouldn’t recommend this if you have a weak stomach or you’re a picky eater. Cafeteria El Dragon in Havana’s Chinatown (yes they have a Chinatown) gave me just the pick me up I needed to tide me over until dinner.
I had what looked like bologna on potato bread…neither tasted like what I thought it was but it was delicious nonetheless!
Dinner was at El Patchanka a local eatery in Old Havana and like many of the restaurants, there was live music along with the local fare and we even got to be part of the show!
Havana is an extremely casual place and when I say casual, I’m not just talking about the people but also the dress code. There was no need to rush home to change and put on 6-inch heels to go out on the town so after dinner, casually dressed, we found ourselves “salsa-ing” (new word alert) at open air Patio Amarillo and ended the evening at El Canon.
Tune in next Wednesday for Part II!