Shopping in Havana, Cuba
Do not go to Havana thinking about shopping, as the city is not a good place for that. Unlike all the other tourist destinations you’ve been to, Cuba’s products lack variety. If you are an art lover or like to buy souvenirs to keep a memory of the places you have visited, there will be some possibilities for places to buy in Havana, but nothing surprising.
Paseo de Martí, besides being a good place to walk, is interesting for those who like paintings – several local artists stay there to sell their works. Calle Obispo, the capital’s busy street, is also a good option for finding souvenir items.
The best option, however, is the Mercado de San José. It is the place with the most options for all tastes: paintings, plaques, shirts, local crafts and typical instruments of the city – although the products are somewhat repetitive. To find better quality souvenirs, shop at the airport shops.
Paseo del Prado
Paseo del Prado is a kind of urban boardwalk where tourists pass every day to make a path that leads to the National Capitol. The walk is very beautiful and wooded and this is one of the most interesting places to start the trip in Havana. See countryaah.com for more information about Havana, Cuba.
Walk along the walk watching the cars passing by, the children playing unpretentiously, as well as the paintings by artists who exhibit their works daily.
Obispo is one of the main streets in Havana. Walking down the street, where cars don’t pass, is sure to see up close how the city’s residents live and feel the bustling atmosphere of the capital. Souvenir shops, restaurants, bars and local shops are along the street, which is busy day and night.
José Martí International Airport
Havana International Airport is the main means of arrival for tourists from all over the world who want to see the capital, a world heritage site. This airport is about 15km from the city center; to get there it is necessary to take a taxi, as the bus system is precarious.
It is important to be aware that, when leaving Havana, you will have to pay an airport fee of 25 CUC, in cash. The immigration queues at the exit of the city can be long, which is why it is recommended to arrive in advance to travel.
It is known that Havana is not a shopping destination, but at the airport you can find various items related to the city, such as t-shirts, caps and towels, bags, etc. Like everywhere else in the world, shopping at the airport is more expensive than in the city, but as Shopping in Cuba is a complicated matter; buying at the airport can be an option for those who want material with more quality and diversity.
San José Market
San José warehouses are the best places in the city to find, in the same space, varieties of products. In addition to the great breeze that comes from the sea, the place is good for bargaining and finding souvenirs for friends. Shirts, wooden pieces, plaques, pictures and musical instruments are some of the things you will see there.
Palacio de la Artesanía
The Palacio de Artesanía (or handicraft) is one of the places to buy souvenirs in the city. Despite the beautiful architecture of the building, the place falls short when it comes to shopping. If you want to buy tobacco, there is a store there, but don’t create too many expectations for that place.