Havana Malecon is recognized worldwide as the most iconic structure in Cuba.
This 8-kilómeter long strip took around 50 years to build, and it caused an important impact in Havana’s lifestyle and tourism. Before the malecon was built, the Havana coast was used by local “Habaneros” for fishing and bathing. Today, the Havana Malecon consists of a wide sidewalk plus 6 traffic lanes across the Havana coast. The Malecon became one of the main streets as it connects several important avenues. It also became the center of life in Havana since locals commute through the Malecon everyday, while at night it becomes a place of street music and drinks.
Havana Malecon Facts
The Havana Malecon’s groundbreaking took place in 1819, by the “Avenida del Puerto” due to the need of locals wanting to expand. Slowly but surely, the rest of the construction took place in 4 phases:
Engineer Don Francisco de Albear was a key element in the construction of such a large structure, as he planned the original structure of the Malecon. Other important characters in this project were the Secretary of Public Works, Miguel de Céspedes, and urbanist Jean Forestier who directed and concluded the construction. The Havana Malecon, formerly called “Avenida Golfo,” quickly became an important element of the “Habaneros” lifestyle and a popular tourist attraction even though its main purpose was to protect Havana from the ocean.
Important Spots at Havana Malecon
When visiting this beautiful port of call, make sure you take some time to walk, jog, or drive through the malecon to really get to know Havana. Witness how local “Habaneros” bring life, music, and spontaneity to the streets of Havana. Enjoy a beautiful view of the ocean, especially at sunrise or sunset. Or grab a tour to get to know Havana’s main buildings and attractions all situated in that avenue. Here’s a list of the main spots at Havana Malecon you cannot miss: