“My mojito in La Bodeguita (del Medio) and my daiquiri in El Floridita” wrote Hemingway on the walls of the former. These are the best-known bars, but El Atelier, on the rooftop terrace of the Meliá Cohíba hotel and the Havana Club Rum Museum also offer good cocktails. Who fancies a mojito?
Passing the Plaza de Armas and its street market for second-hand books, at number 207 in calle Mercaderes there’s a paladar (a private, family-run restaurant) where you can enjoy Creole food in a friendly atmosphere. In this area you’ll find new businesses, tattoo parlours, and a cleaned up Havana. You can see this at Café Bohemia, which has one of the most modern menus, right in la Plaza Vieja (the Old Square). Here you’ll also find the Fototeca of Cuba, which is a space devoted to photography that is well worth a visit.
The old and the new live side by side in Havana, but there are still the real classics and you can’t leave without walking along Calle Obispo, which is a boulevard full of people, shops and art galleries, including iconic places such as the Hotel Ambos Mundos or the Floridita restaurant. The mojito at the La Bodeguita del Medio restaurant bar is almost obligatory, and it goes down better with a good Havana cigar. You can buy them at the Real Fábrica de Tabacos Partagás cigar factory and museum, which is close to el Capitolio.