Travel Reference
In-Depth Information
This large, state-run restaurant is located in Miramar, just after the Calzada Tun-
nel leading out of Vedado. It faces the tunnel, so it is extremely easy to find. If you
want a break from Havana, venture out to Miramar, sit down at the Kasalta and
enjoy a great meal. The restaurant has a sports bar theme and the food is fantast-
ic. Everything is priced in CUC. Most of the ofertas are priced at about 4 to 5 CUC
and they include desert and a beer. Meal portions are generous; it will be a chal-
lenge to finish all the food. Service is fast and friendly and the ambiance is casual.
In the late evening, the restaurant takes on a bar atmosphere and is a great place
to have a drink and watch sports on one of their many large televisions.
Coppelia (Corner 23 and L)
It's not exactly a restaurant, but it's a great place to get a wonderful ice cream
dessert after dinner, or for a snack, anytime. Coppelia is Havana's world famous
ice cream parlor, serving some of the best and cheapest ice cream in Cuba. The
lineups to get into this place are long, particularly on hot days. The parlor
occupies a whole city block and there are usually 4 or 5 separate lines formed
around the perimeter. Once you get past those exterior lines, you will have to
wait a bit longer in lines located inside the building. Don't let the long wait scare
you; it's well worth it. The ice cream is cold and creamy, and scoops are priced at
only 1 peso (MN) each. They are served on large ice cream platters, in portions
of 5 scoops each, called ensaladas (salads). Ask the server which flavors they
are serving that day, and then place your order. It's usually best to order
everything you expect to eat at one time. The servers like to turn over the tables
as fast as possible, so they might not come back again to take a second order.
My suggestion: order two mixed ice cream ensaladas , that's 10 scoops. It will be
more than enough for one person. A few different pastries and cakes are also
usually available, priced at 5 pesos (MN) each. Note: If you want to skip the long
lines, you can choose to sit in a special “foreigners” section. Although this will be
faster, you will have to pay 1 CUC per scoop, rather than the usual 1 peso (MN)
per scoop.
Independent Paladares
As mentioned before, I don't usually recommend going to sit-down paladares be-
cause the prices tend to be more expensive than state restaurants while the food
is usually the same. That being said, there are some locations which stand out,
and are not overly expensive. I am sure you will be able to find a lot more
throughout Havana. I will mention a few, to give you an idea of what to expect at
independent locations.
El Balcon (28 between 31 and 33, (just west of the intersection of Zapata and 26)
This is a formal, sit down restaurant located in the Nuevo Vedado neighborhood.
There is an interior, air conditioned area, as well as a large exterior terrace, which
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