1 January: New Year Day

indi's picture


Everything's Closed for Liberty Day!

Indi and Yodhi woke up really late, almost noon, while I couldn't asleep because Noe was still feverish in the morning. Luckily later close to noon the fever subsided.

At around 1pm we walked towards Malecon and took a taxi to Maraka's Italian restaurant at La Rampas, which has the best pizza in town. We ordered chicken, beef, and vegetarian pizza. They were much better than the pizza we had yesterday.

Then we walked up the street towards Coppelia, but it was closed. Almost everything is closed during the Liberty Day. We passed by the Ministry of Sugar, MInistry of Public Health, and several travel agency (which were luckily, open), where we made enquiry about car rental and Cayo Coco trip.


A View of Havana from the Top

Then Eko took us the La Torre, which is the tallest restaurant in Cuba. The view from the top was really amazing, towards Malecon. We could see the US Interest Section with the massive 138 Cuban flagpoles in front of it.



Mount of Flags and Propaganda Billboard War

From La Torre we walked towards the US Interest Section and the Anti Imperialist Square to look at the monuments and billboards closer. The Cuban government erected this flagpole in order to cover up the billboard at the top at the US Interest Section building, which displayed pro-US sentences.



Right at the Malecon side near US Interest Section, there are billboards by the Cuban Government, that says that George Bush is terrorist. It's a stylish way to counter US propaganda.



We were not allowed to touch the flagpole monument or the billboards, and we were not allowed to be there for a long time, seemed that Cuban government afraid that people would deface the monuments.

The plaza in front of the flagpole monument is the venue of the Liberty Day concert, with Los Van Van on stage. I really wanted to go to this concert, but because Noe was sick we couldn't make it. There are plaques with the names of Cuban heroes, as well as American human rights activists such as Martin Luther King.

In the mean time, Eko and Tya were posing near the monument too.


Plaza of the Revolution: The famous Che Guevara Mural

We then drove to Plaza de la Revolucion to take photo with Che Guevara Mural which is based on Alberto Korda's famous photo of Che.


Che's Mural lies in front of the humongous Jose Marti monument. Other government buildings are also located around this area.



Enjoying Ourselves in the Cemetery

Then we drove aimlessly until we passed by the Cemetery (Necropolis) of Cristobal Colon, and a convoy of cars were coming for a burial. We immediately made a detour to follow the convoy in order to avoid paying to enter the Cemetery complex. We followed the ceremony which was held by a catholic priest. It was a very quick ceremony, only 10 minutes. Then we walked around the cemetery complex which has beautiful statues. They must be an expensive cemetery.The cemetery is really huge, it's like a city of itself with streets and blocks. It's a city for the dead, and is full of beautiful marble sculptures.



Cooling Down at the Park and at Eko's

We continued to drive to La Bosque de Havana, which is city forest. We didn't stay long because we smell dead chicken from a Santeria Ceremony.


Then we hang out at Eko's house in Miramar. It was a very beautiful big colonial house, and only 400 meters from the Embassy.



After a great Maggi Mee dinner at Eko’s house we returned to the hotel with two bad news. The Suedes staying in the same casa almost got their cameras stolen, while the Irish group had to struggle with a snatch thief, all happened at the Centro area. We realized that lately Centro has not been very safe for tourist, and we’re glad that tomorrow we are going to move to other area.


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