Set foot on Cuba and experience a sensorial experience like no other, starting with the irresistible salsa and rumba beats arising from every corner, and the heavenly sight of the turquoise waters stroking the palm tree-lined white sandy beaches all around the island. One look is enough to understand the spellbinding power of Cuba, and how its natural beauty, contagious rhythms, world-renowned cigars and rum cocktails have influenced and mesmerized artists, musicians, composers and writers alike, from all around the world.
The largest and least commercialised island of the Caribbean is also considered by many as its most exciting one, with its mix of Spanish and African roots, and a fascinating modern history combined with the fact that the country is one of the world's last stronghold of communism. Decades of political tensions and isolations has enabled the island preserve the authenticity of its heritage, traditions and surrounding from the invasion of the tourism industry, and Cubans seem genuinely happy to welcome visitors and share with them the true heartbeat of Cuba.
To many people, this heartbeat nowadays is the last one to truthfully represent the authentic Latino identity, through a culture that conveys its music, dance, sense of fiesta and all other values that compose its core. As a result, the most part of the Latin America music comes from Cuba, and many travellers visiting the island tend to see the rest of Latin America as a diluted version of Cuba itself. Cubans are often described as a spiced up version of Italian or Spanish people: vibrant, loud, expressive, outspoken, generous, warm, friendly and very sociable people, and to take a plunge in the Cuban culture can be a truly heart-warming, inspiring and uplifting experience.
Cuba's relative political isolation gives the island this unique and slightly surreal sensation that it is lost in time, somewhere in the post-war era. A sensation composed of old American cars, La Havana Vieja's colourful and shabby colonial buildings and, mostly, the fact that the country has escaped the consequences of mass modern tourism. A sensation that travellers should grab the opportunity to enjoy, as political tensions with America resulting in the travel and trade restrictions gradually loosen, threatening to affect Cuba's authenticity and identity in an irreversible manner.
The best time to go? It’s right now!