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Where to Cruise: Cuba

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Havana skyline, Cuba


23°9'N, 082°21'W

Now that travel regulations have loosened up (somewhat), Cuba is an option for many American boaters. To get the down low on the Pearl of the Antilles, we asked our man in Havana, Peter Swanson, AIM Marine Group’s Director of Event Content, what he likes to do when he is there (as he so often is).

“Cuba is a beautiful, messed-up place,” Swanson told us. “For boaters, it offers more bays and sheltered anchorages than anywhere else I know, but mostly without any marine infrastructure. The economy may be a trainwreck, but nowhere else in the world has a greater concentration of artists and musicians. Cuba punches above its weight in sports, too. That’s good because decent food and drinks are in short supply. Despite the day-to-day difficulties, the Cuban people maintain a subversive sense of humor and, thanks to shortages and deprivation, an unmatched talent for improvisation. There are said to be 40,000 pre-1960s American cars on the streets, but a lot of them get their power from anywhere but Detroit. I just got back yesterday from Havana, and one of my cab rides was in a 1957 Chevy with a Czech diesel truck engine under the hood.”

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