Need I explain why Cuba’s classic cars are so cool? I’m not even a “car person” and I could sit in a street-side bar for hours, mojito in hand, watching this living museum of automobiles parade by. You see this is particularly unusual for me. I come from a family of motorsport enthusiasts. My father is a mechanic, who initially inherited his mechanical workshop from my grandfather, another mechanic. I spent many school holidays at the workshop, trying to escape, even if it meant to the nearest library. If like me you have little knowledge or interest in cars but an appreciation for great design, you’ll enjoy this eye candy. For those fortunate enough to be travelling to the Caribbean island, you’ll find these cars used as taxis and tours, so make sure you take a cruise in one of Cuba’s classic cars.
Notes on taking a Havana tour in one of Cuba’s classic cars
- Generally, the drivers do not speak Spanish, so unless you also can confidently communicate in Spanish it may be better to pre-book a tour with a guide. That way you will get some commentary about the places you are visiting and seeing along the way.
- If you are flagging down a car on the street, note that some classic cars are taxis or even private cars.
- Routes vary depending on how much time you have and are willing to pay for. Official drivers carry a standard map which shows the routes and stops for 1, 2 and 3-hour tours with pricing. You will also need to pay in cash.
- Pre-paid tours are usually 2-hours and CUC50-55 (USD50-55) per person. These generally include an English speaking guide and a sunset cocktail at the Hotel Nacional to conclude the tour. If you want to select a particular vehicle, expect to pay more.
Cuba is a living museum of vintage cars. One can’t imagine how much time and sweat has been spent keeping these beauties on the road. Bring on those pastel-hued, dream-mobiles!
For more on Cuba, see these top things to do in Havana, and Colours of Cuba – How Cuba Taught Me to be a More Conscious Traveller.
Peace, love & inspiring travel,