Recipe: Cuban ropa vieja

Recipe: Cuban ropa vieja

Ropa vieja is a really good and traditional recipe that consists of a mix of ingredients. It is very popular in Cuba.

Cuban Ropa Vieja (6 pax)

Ingredients:

  • A piece of skirt meat.
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper.
  • 4 cloves of garlic.
  • 3/4 cup dry wine.
  • 1 teaspoon cumin.
  • 2 medium peppers (one red and one green).
  • 1 spoonful of full seasoning.
  • 1 teaspoon paprika.
  • A cup tomato puree.
  • 1/4 cup olive oil.
  • Salt to taste.
  • 1 large onion.

Preparation:

  1. Firstly, you must cook the piece of meat skirt in a pressure cooker. You should cook it with water to cover it, a pinch of salt and bay leaves for 20 minutes after it starts boiling.
  2. On the other hand, if you cook it in a conventional casserole, the cooking time will be approximately 2 hours.
  3. Then, once it is cooked, you should wait for it to cool and drain. Reserve that broth where it was cooked. At this moment, crumble or fray.
  4. Next, you must prepare a good sauce. For this, heat in a deep pan, the oil and add the onion and the peppers that previously cut in small squares and crushed garlic.
  5. Then add the rest of ingredients: tomato puree, spices, dry wine, and a little the broth in which you cooked the meat. Finally, incorporate the frayed meat.
  6. You stir everything well and let it cook for about 10 minutes with medium heat.
  7. It is ready to eat!

We recommend you to prepare this recipe and continue to learn more about the gastronomic culture of Cuba.

The closure of part of the Malecón, La Habana

The Cuban Government announces the closure of part of the Malecón

A tragic accident

The Cuban Government announced the closure of part of the Malecón de la Habana, Cuba, due to the tragic accident occurred in that area on Sunday 19th May. The accident left 5 dead and more than 20 wounded.

A driver lost the control and broke into the sidewalk of the northern path of the Malecón. The Havana Roads Commission said that the driver of the car was under the influence of alcohol and was traveling with excessive speed when he caused the dramatic loss.

As a result of this fact, the measure will be in effect from 9 pm and until the cultural activities scheduled on Malecón Avenue conclude. The Road Safety Commission specified that the closure of the avenue includes the stretch from Peña Pobre Street to 15th Street.

It is necessary to mention that there will be alternative routes. For example, some bus routes of the local transport will be able to circulate at night during the weekends.

Accidents in Cuba

This traffic accident is part of a wave of misfortunes in Cuba. In 2018 there were 10,070 accidents, 683 dead and 7,730 injured according to the National Road Safety Commission.

Effectively, Cuba has a high rate of traffic accidents due to the vehicles in circulation are more than 20 years old and has precarious maintenance. Certainly, during the mandatory inspections in 2018, they detected technical deficiencies in 44% of the vehicles.  In addition, more than 36,000 vehicle circulation permits that did not have the technical revision updated were withdrawn.

In conclusion, Cuba is imposing measures to prevent further human misfortunes.

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

Recipe: the spectacular Congrí Rice from Cuba

Recipe: the spectacular Congrí Rice

A typical dish of Cuba

This rice is one of the most famous dishes in Cuba. It is true that there are many different ways of cooking it, depending on the region of the country. Certainly, all have their charm, so when you eat it you can savor this mix of ingredients. Below, you can find our own recipe: the spectacular Congrí Rice.

Congrí Rice

Ingredients (4 pax):

  • 1 cup small grain black beans.
  • 2 cups white rice.
  • 1 white onion.
  • 2 cups of black bean broth.
  • 1/2 green bell pepper.
  • 1/2 chilli red pepper.
  • 4 cloves of garlic.
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano.
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin.
  • 1 large bay leaf.
  • 4 spoons of vegetable oil or butter.
  • Salt.
  • A splash of vinegar.
  • 2 tablespoons oil.

Preparation:

  1. One day before, soak the black beans. The next day, cook them with the same soaking water, bay leaf, a piece of chilli and a pinch of salt until they are soft.
  2. Then, once they are warm and you can handle them, measure 2 cups of the broth and leave the beans separately.
  3. Next, heat the oil and sauté the chopped onion, the chili pepper and 2 of the crushed garlic cloves. Stir until the onion looks clear, about 5 minutes.
  4. Then, you should add the rice to the sofrito and stir it well for a few seconds. Once impregnated everything went to the next step.
  5. Now it’s time to add the beans and stir everything until you get a homogeneous mixture.
  6. Then you can add the previously measured broth, plus cumin, oregano and salt.
  7. Finally, you should keep the fire high until it starts to boil. At this time, you stir it and lower the potency, leaving it to simmer, until the rice is soft.
  8. The last essential step is to fry the other 2 cloves of crushed garlic with the 2 extra spoonfuls of fat and add it to the cooked rice.
       

We hope you have learned a little more about this culinary culture and decide to visit Cuba!

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

New modality of lodging in Cuba

New modality of lodging in Cuba

The new Cuba

It is a certainty that Cuba is improving every day the services and the tourist offers. This has unleashed the creation of a new modality of accommodation, ideal for students or groups of friends interested in touring around the urban centers of the cities and their cultural heritage.

Nowadays, people is discovering the world using the hostels. This is because this type of accommodation is cheaper and more practical. We inform you that there are 12.000 hostels aprox. located and distributed in 165 nations. The target segment is the young people that want to share an experience with other people of different nationalities.

A good option to sleep

We recommend you to stay in Vedado Azul. It is located in a building from the 30s of the last century, which in the beginning was the home of a Havana family and since the 70s it has served as accommodation. The hostel has 20 air-conditioned rooms with 27 comfortable berths and nine beds, for a total of 63 pax. The tourists can use a television, wifi networks, a snack-bar and a terrace overlooking the city.

Another curiosity is that the hostel was built in 18 months at a cost of one million 800 thousand pesos. It is planned that this investment will be recover it in nine years with an efficient exploitation of this modality of city tourism.

In order to increase this type of tourism, Raciel Troval Rodríguez, president of the Islazul hotel business group, explained that they have to transmit the historical, cultural, social and heritage values of the capital, suggest places to visit, excursions, sports events, etc. and above all explain the benefits of this wonderful city.

Finally, she announced the opening of the new hostel. It is a part of the planned investments in greeting the anniversaries 500 of Havana and 25 of Islazul, and also the recently concluded International Tourism Fair, FitCuba 2019.

We hope this article has been useful to plan your trip to Cuba! Enjoy your holidays!

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

Cuba, an essential place to visit

Cuba, essential place to visit

Cuba, is an essential place to visit due to is an island where the salsa still runs through the veins of every Cuban in this proud nation. In addition, the island has a breathtaking beaches, forest-covered mountains, colourful houses and cobbled-stone streets make an enlightening experience when you travel to Cuba.

In this article, we are going to give you some advices that will be useful if you are thinking to visit this beautiful country.

Places to visit in Cuba

Cuba has plenty of places to explore, from branded the birthplace of salsa to dream beaches. For example, Trinidad has a baroque architecture and sugar cane and tobacco plantations. In addition, it is deemed a UNESCO world heritage site.

Also, the archaeological capital of Cuba, Banes, is famous for its well-preserved artefacts from the indigenous Taino people, Then, Varadero is a beach town beside the 20 km stretch of white sands and turquoise waters.

When is the best time to travel?

We consider that the best time to travel to Cuba is between December and May.

Festival-wise, the best celebrations in Cuba take place from July 25th to 27th where the locals take to the streets to celebrate the success of the Cuban Revolution. The Cubans celebrate these days as the happiest days in Cuban history.

Itinerary example

We warn you that the transport in Cuba is unorganised. It is recommended to plan your trip beforehand rather than trying your luck with spontaneous trips to avoid unpleasant delays.

From day 1 to day 3: Havana

We recommend you to visit La Habana in the first time. It is the capital plenty of vintage cars, colourful colonial-style buildings, cigars and salsa. You have to head to La Habana Vieja, to eat churros and explore the streets where the decaying buildings are surprisingly pretty and charming. Also, you can enjoy a classic car tour in a vintage car. Do not forget to check out the Plaza de la Revolucion and the Havana Cathedral.

From day 3 to day 7: Jibacoa Beach and Varadero

Playa Jibacoa is the Cuba’s best-kept secret. This picturesque beach is postcard worthy for its soft white sands and clear emerald waters. You can relax, swim and dive the sunken shipwrecks for a few days and enjoy the Caribbean heat. Then, you can go to Varadero that offers the same gorgeous beaches but with more tourists and hotel chains.

In conclusion, Cuba is a wonderful country, for this reason you cannot miss any detail. Enjoy your trip!

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

The best beaches, Cuba

What are the most wonderful beaches?

It is a fact that Cuba has the most spectacular beaches with hypnotic blue water and white sand. These beaches are a real paradise on earth. For this reason, we have listed some of the beaches below.

Varadero beach

Varadero Beach is one of the best beaches in Cuba. It is located in the peninsula of Hicacos, in the province of Matanzas. In it predominates the white sand. In addition, there is a clear and transparent waters that give you the possibility of practicing some sports.

Varadero beach

Esmeralda beach

This beach is located in Guardalavaca. It is considered the cradle of the first inhabitants of the island.

Ancon beach

The beach has a white sands, blue and green tones worthy of photography, and beautiful sunsets. This beach is close to Trinidad, one of the colonial architectural jewels that houses Cuba, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Paradise beach

This beach is the turquoise pearl of the Caribbean. It is famous for the transparency of the water. It is really extraordinary.

Paradise beah

Cayo Ensenachos

One of the longest and most spectacular beaches in Cuba is Megano Beach. It is a beach that is practically virgin, since it has very clean and crystalline waters.

Cayo Coco

The paradise of Cayo Coco and its beautiful Playa Larga is like a huge natural pool of turquoises, greens and electric blues.

Coco Cayo

Cayo Saetia

It is located in Holguín. This Cayo gives you the possibility to explore the exotic tropical nature in addition to practicing many aquatic sports. This is a perfect combination to enjoy the beautiful beaches, nature and an impressive natural landscape.

Cayo Largo

In this place there are the Sirena beach and the Tortuga beach. These are true natural swimming pools has a dozen privileged complexes that have been installed. Also, there are 20 km of white sand, turquoise waters and even iguanas.

Long Cayo

Iguana Island

It is very close to Cayo Largo del Sur, in the heart of the Caribbean. The Isla de las Iguanas is one of the most impressive areas of the Cuban Caribbean surrounded by crystal clear waters, reefs and natural pools.

Santa Lucía beach

It is located to the north of Camagüey, and in its almost 21 km of beach you will find a great variety of migratory ducks, flamingos, colorful tropical fish and other marine species, which makes it a main interest in the area. It is also an ideal place for lovers of diving and marine observation, as it is famous for having one of the most important coral reefs in the world.

We hope you have discovered new beaches and we wish you luck if you take a trip to Cuba.

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

Beatriz Valdés returns to La Habana, Cuba

Beatriz Valdés returns to La Habana, Cuba

Beatriz visits Cuba to celebrate her birthday

Two days ago the actress announced through Instagram her visit to La Habana, Cuba. Beatriz Valdes returns to La Habana to celebrate her birthday.

Beatriz Valdés has returned to Cuba with these beautiful words: “I went to Habana to receive my birthday and reconnect with the city where I was born on a Mother’s Day Sunday. I went to the corners of my memory and lived the illusion of having the city, the sea and the Malecón all to myself, as if, together, they were waiting for me to celebrate. I went with my family of life and shared with them the landscape that saw me born. There are dreams that come true”.

Certainly, for a lot of people Beatriz is identified with the name of Rachel. It is due to was her character in the film La Bella del Alhambra in 1989. Anyway people are very happy with her visit.

Sharing photos and experiences

During her stay in Cuba, Beatriz shares with her followers several photos in charming places. For example, the wall of Malecón or the Gran Teatro de La Habana.

We would like to inform you that the Cuban actress moved from Habana to Caracas in the 1990s and for two decades she captivated Venezuelan audiences with her characters. For this reason, it is possible that some followers do not know that she is from Cuba. For instance, one follower says to her: “Wow, I had no idea you were Cuban!

In conclusion, she says that there are many Cubans who came to Venezuela and are remembered as ours and even on some occasions not even Cuban seem to have lost even the accent of the island.

We hope you have enjoyed this article discovering even more Cuba!

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

La Habana Vieja, discover it!

La Habana Vieja, discover it!

What to see on a city tour?

If your favorite places to visit are museums, you have something to enjoy in La Habana, Cuba. The mainly tours in this city includes some museums.

1. Museum of Colonial Art

It is a beautiful museum located at the entrance of the Plaza, where you are generally blinded by the grandeur of the magnificent cathedral. It was built in 1720, originally for the purpose of the residence of the Counts of Casa Bayon.

In 1969 it was restored and since then it has opened its doors to visitors as a Museum of Colonial Art, which, although relatively small, but very rich in dishes, sculpture and historical furniture.

2. Museum of Navigation

It is located a few steps from the moat of the Castillo de la Real Fuerza, in Plaza de Armas. It has an interesting routes that illuminate the historical aspects of the fortress and the historic center of Old Havana.

3. City Museum

Everything is nearby, near the Plaza de Armas, so your walk is rich, without having to travel long distances. This museum dates back to 1770 and was built on the site of the original Havana church.

4. Card house

It was opened in May 2001 and it is located on the ground floor of the 17th century Prado Amero Marquise House, the oldest building in the square. It is an interesting and unusual offer, with more than 2.000 cards from around the world, dating back to the 19th century.

What else can you know walking in La Habana Vieja?

Some of the beauties that are this beautiful capital are impressive from the outside and contain incredible treasures.

Firstly, an special attraction is the Cathedral of San Cristobal de la Habana, the most famous of the eleven Catholic cathedrals on the island of Cuba. It is in the Plaza de la Cathedral, in the center of Old Havana.

The Cathedral was built in the baroque architectural style. Also, it has several Tuscan elements and has the peculiarity of being built mainly preserved marine fossils.

On the other hand, you can also visit the Castle of the Royal Force and the Palace of the General Captains. Another places include two streets: Calle Obispo and Calle Mercaderes.

Finally, we propose you to visit the Church and Monastery of San Francisco de Asís and the famous Old Square.

We hope you travel to Cuba and have the opportunuty to visit La Habana and discover the culture.

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

The palates: the best places to eat in Cuba

The palates: the best places to eat in Cuba

The best places to eat

One of the concerns when you’re traveling is where to eat well. In this article, we are going to announce the best palates: the best places to eat in La Havana, Cuba.

In Cuba, the “palates” are options as diverse in their styles as in the delights they pose to the senses of the guest. The biggest difference between the palates is usually in the decoration of the place and the dishes, the location, the prices and the quality of the service.

The Guarida

Certainly, it is the most popular palate in Cuba. The Guarida is popular because it is an obligatory stop for every famous person who arrives in Havana. It’s a very attractive place, it’s not cheap, if you want different Cuban food, with a modern and gourmet touch, this is the adequate place.

Palate Coffee Laurent

Café Laurent has a bohemian chic aesthetic. The furniture and walls of the 1950s wallpapered with old newspaper clippings give it that retro atmosphere. In addition to its food, the most spectacular part of this site is its spectacular terrace.

Rio Mar Restaurant-Bar-Grill

The taste and the presentation of its culinary offer are exquisite and very original. The interior decoration is charming, but the most impressive are the views of the Almendares River. His cuisine is author.

The cook

The cook is a unique, dynamic, eclectic and multifunctional place. It is integrated by four spaces: the restaurant Terraza-Lounge, the Waiting Bar, the Havana Gourmet, and the fresh Terrace Garden.

The Cathedral

The Cathedral is a popular place with a quality-price value that makes it practically full every day.

Saint Kitts and Nevis

It is famous due to U.S. President Barack Obama chose it to dine with his family during his visit to Havana. It has an exotic collection of 50s memorabilia and its different touch to traditional Cuban dishes.

Doña Eutimia

This palate makes the best old clothes and the best sleeping black beans in Havana. It is located next to Havana Cathedral Square.

Cha cha cha cha

This is one of the new places that promise to become regulars for lovers of good food who also seek to have fun without looking at the time. Fusion style very fashionable, Cha cha chá flatters the palate, sight and ear with equal care.

In conclusion, if you are lucky enough to travel to Cuba you must discover the wonderful palates.

Apply for Cuba E-Visa

Tope de Collantes: a natural paradise

Tope de Collantes a natural paradise

A natural wonder

The are many natural wonders in Cuba, but undoubtedly the Topes de Collantes is the best natural paradises. It is a protected natural area in the middle of the Sierra del Escambray. The location is great due to is very close to the tourist city of Trinidad, in Sancti Spíritus.

At an altitude of 800 meters above sea level and with Pico San Juan as the highest elevation with 1140 meters high, the Sierra del Escambray treasures 686 thousand species of insects and 8 thousand 600 of birds.

Certainly, this marvel is an ideal place if you are a lover of being in direct contact with nature. You can enjoy hiking and mountaineering, discovering strange species of birds, reptiles and plants.

Topes de Collantes gives you the possibility to get out of the stress of daily life and walk relaxed among its exuberant nature. A set of mountains, rivers and caves in their natural state formed the park.

Walks inside the nature

Among its trails you can find numerous species of endemic animals. Also, you can enjoy the beautiful waterfalls in the middle of a unique microclimate that favors the flowering of trees and fruits. This natural area is an ideal place to relax while enjoying pure air and its beautiful views. It is a good place to take the best pictures and feel nature.

The Carbuní trail ends in a magnificent waterfall with the same name. This is perhaps the most popular walk. In its two-and-a-half kilometer length it takes you between coffee plantations, traditional houses and cliffs to the waterfall.

In addtion, another walk is the Ecological Trail, also known as the Vegas Grandes, which ends at the Soroa Falls, an incredible pool of crystal clear water.

Finally, the path to La Batata takes you among beautiful views and gives you the chance to bathe in medicinal waters. The route of Hacienda Codina takes you to a ranch with medicinal mud baths, among bamboo forests and orchids. There you can also visit the Cueva del Altar, the Isla de los Enamorados and a natural viewpoint with a spectacular panoramic view of the Valle de los Ingenios.

Enjoy your visit to Cuba!

Apply for Cuba E-Visa