El Malecon & Havana Nights

El Malecon is Havana’s board esplanade.  It stretches about 5 miles from Vedado to Old Havana and it provides an amazing view of Havana during the day and night.

El Malecon Havana Cuba
El Malecon near Old Havana
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El Malecon’s construction began during the U.S. military rule in 1901.  However, a lot has changed since then.  The esplanade is completely empty during the day, but starts to pick up around 5 pm.   This is due to the fact that it’s pretty hot in Cuba and Habaneros prefer to stay in the shade provided by their homes.  Once 5 pm hits, El Malecon starts to pick up and the street vendors start to set up shop.  The music starts playing and the bands slowly make their way to El Malecon.   It’s a fun time to walk the boardwalk like Melbourne’s South Wharf Promenade.

At night, El Malecon is filled with Habaneros.  Some are dancing.  Some are relaxing.  Some are enjoying drinks.  Some are lovers.  Some are whistling at tourists.  All are enjoying each other.  The cool ocean breeze finds its way through the promenade as fisherman’s swing their line and bait into the ocean with La Cabana in the background.  It’s an amazing sight to see the sunset turn the horizon orange while the Cuban music bounces off the water.

There are a number of new businesses opening on the esplanade now.  The businesses are replacing the old ruins with missing roofs where people live.  The old Havana is slowing being gentrified with modern businesses.  However, it’s still the prime place for entertainment for a people that are economically challenge.  I found it fascinating how people with so little were simply enjoying life and making do with what they have.  It was very inspiring to see the soul of the Cuban people on El Malecon.  I’m not sure why more Americans haven’t visited Havana, Cuba.

Check out our other Havana articles here.

El Malecon Havana Cuba
Playa Malecón