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HAVANA
Overview:
Havana is the capital city and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of 728.26 km2 making it the largest city by area, the most populous city, and the third largest metropolitan area in the Caribbean region.
The city extends mostly westward and southward from the bay, which is entered through a narrow inlet and which divides into three main harbours. Havana was founded by the Spanish in the 16th century and due to its strategic location it served as a springboard for the Spanish conquest of the continent becoming a stopping point for the treasure laden Spanish Galleons on the crossing between the New World and the Old World. King Philip II of Spain granted Havana the title of City in 1592. Walls as well as forts were built to protect the old city. The city was captured by the British in 1762 and after regaining the city the Spanish transformed Havana into the most heavily fortified city in the Americas. Construction began on what was to become the Fortress of San Carlos de la Cabaña, the third biggest Spanish fortification in the New World.


Landmarks

The city is also noted for its history, culture, architecture and monuments. Due to Havana's almost five hundred year existence, the city boasts some of the most diverse styles of architecture in the world, from castles built in the late 16th century to modernist present-day high-rises. Among the Havana landmarks are:

OldHavana La Habana Vieja: contains the core of the original city of Havana. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982.
El Morro El Morro Castle: is a fortress guarding the entrance to Havana bay; Morro Castle was built because of the threat to the harbor from pirates.
La Cabaña Fortress San Carlos de la Cabaña located on the east side of the Havana bay is the most impressive fortress from colonial times, particularly its walls constructed at the end of the 18th century.
La Fuerza Castillo de la Real Fuerza is another big monument that closes the Plaza de las Armas. It was the first big fortification of the city, initiated in 1558 on the ruins of an ancient fortress.
Catedral Catedral de San Cristóbal, the most prominent building on the Plaza de la Catedral. The Cathedral was raised on the chapel after 1748 and is one of the most beautiful and sober churches of the American baroque.
Plaza Vieja La Plaza Vieja was the site of executions, processions, bullfights, and fiestas - all witnessed by Havana's wealthiest citizens, who looked on from their balconies. The urban architectural complex of La Plaza Vieja is represented by valuable colonial buildings from the XVII, XVIII, XIX and some of the early twentieth century.
Capitolio El Capitolio Nacional: built in 1929 as the Senate and House of Representatives, the colossal building is recognizable by its dome which dominates the city's skyline. Inside stands the third largest indoor statue in the world, La Estatua de la República.
El Cristo Christ of Havana: Havana's 20-meter (66 ft) marble statue of Christ (1958) blesses the city from the east hillside of the bay, much like the famous Cristo Redentor in Rio de Janeiro.
GarciaLorca The Great Theatre of Havana: is an opera house famous particularly for the National Ballet of Cuba, it sometimes hosts performances by the National Opera. The theater is also known as concert hall, García Lorca, the biggest in Cuba.
Malecon El Malecon/Sea wall: is the avenue that runs along the north coast of the city, beside the seawall. The Malecón is the most popular avenue of Havana, it is known for its sunsets.
Nacional Hotel Nacional de Cuba: an Art Deco National Hotel famous in the 1950s as a gambling and entertainment complex. The Hotel Nacional de Cuba is a World Heritage Site and a National Monument.
Palacio Museo de la Revolución: located in the former Presidential Palace, with the yacht Granma on display behind the museum.

Havana International Airport Jose Marti:
The Jose Marti International International Airport is the largest and busiest airport in Cuba serving approximately 4 million passengers each year. It is named in memory of the Cuban patriot and poet Jose Marti. It’s located in the town of Boyeros, 15 km (9 miles) southwest of Havana (Cuba’s capital city). Havana Airport is the hub for Cubana the Aviacion, Aerogaviota and AeroCaribbean, and it also handles flights for more than 25 international airlines.
The Jose Marti international airport has 4 terminals:
Terminal 1 – Domestic Terminal: It used to be the international terminal, it’s now used primarly for domestic flights and is located on the west side of runway 6. It’s mainly used by Cubana de Aviacion, Aerogaviota, and AeroCaribbean.
Terminal 2 – Charters Terminal: It handles mainly scheduled Special Authority charter flights to/from the United States (Miami, New York and Los Angeles). It’s located on the north side of the airport in front of runway 24 threshold. This terminal had been undergoing extensive renovations and expansion recently. It reopened on December 24th, 2010.
Terminal 3 – International Terminal It’s the main international terminal and it’s the largest and most modern. It was inaugurated in 1988 by Fidel Castro and Canada's Prime Minister Jean Chretien. It handles flights for more than 25 international airlines, seving approximately 60 destinations in more than 30 countires. It is situated halfway down the north side of the runway.
Terminal 5 – Aerocaribbean Terminal: It’s mainly used by Cuban airlines AeroCaribbean (domestic and regional flights) and Aerotaxi (domestic charters). Terminal 5 is situated in the south east corner of the airfield, just south of the 24 threshold.

Some of the Airlines currently flying to Havana:
Aireuropa Interjet Aeromexico british Copa KLM Sun Country Aeroflot
Avianca Cayman transaero AirFrance cubana aerocaribbean JetBlue TACA
Lacsa Conviasa TAAG ibc airways

Please click these links to check Havana International Airport Jose Marti real-time ARRIVALS and DEPARTURES


CIGB 20 Aniv
CIGB
Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Havana, Cuba
address 31 Ave e/ 158 and 190, Cubanacan, Playa, Havana 10600, Cuba
phone (53-7) 208 7465
(53-7) 208 7421 ext.146
email biomed@cigb.edu.cu
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