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90 miles to Cuba. How to get there?

Once the wheels of our American Airlines charter plane screeched on the runway, signaling that we had landed on Cuban soil, a roar of applause started. Nothing surprising so far, we Romanians do the same once we land to safety. The difference was I had just landed in Cuba, on a plane full of Americans, myself included. The only ones applauding were the Cuban Americans, visiting their families. The rest of us still had our noses pegged to the window. 



My Cuba Diaries: Inside the Cuban Art Factory

A music capital by any standard, Havana lives up its long, boisterous nights, just as it pulsates throughout its sunny, steamy days. There is salsa cubana, rumba and jazz, with long withstanding institutions entertaining since decades.



My Cuba Diaries: Walking through history at Museo de la Revolución

Every time I reach for my phone, a Cuban flag stares back at me. But it’s not just the red, white and blue that captures my attention, but the memory it evokes - a steamy morning overlooking the Havana streets from a palatial balcony, old time Chevys and locals crossing hurriedly along.



My Cuba Diaries: Restaurante Museo 1514

In the small Trinidad, located in central Cuba, pretty museums are the norm. Known as Cuba’s Museum City, colonial architecture looms on every cobblestone street. Lucky me, I realized, as I first set my eyes on the antiques of Trinidad. A well-preserved living testament of the sugar trade opulence of two centuries ago, Trinidad is laden with heirlooms like no other city.



My Cuba Diaries: Seeking Hemingway at Finca Vigia

Visiting the Cuban home of literary giant Ernest Hemingway, whose novels and stories I’ve revered is nothing short of a pilgrimage of sorts, and a must for any budding writer.



My Cuba Diaries: Dinner at La Guarida

If I knew nothing else about going back to Cuba, one thing was for sure. I would dine at La Guarida, Havana’s most coveted paladar. I requested a reservation not weeks, but several months in advance. An exaggeration for sure, but my preventive excitement was off the charts. Ever since watching Fresa y Chocolate (1993), the sole Oscar-nominated Cuban movie shot on the location of today’s La Guarida (that’s hideout in Spanish), I’ve made a mental note to one day visit.


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