Cuba´s 5th Avenue

Havana, Cuba´s 5th Avenue

Places

Havana´s majestic Fifth Avenue connects two of the Cuban capitol´s most traversed residential neighborhoods, Miramar and el Vedado. It´s eastern end begins at the tunnel by the same name, and it ends at Santa Fe, Havana´s westernmost suburb. It takes about twenty minutes to drive it from end to end, and it is probably the nicest drive in Havana. The road is lined by beautiful mansions, and quite a few foreign embassies are housed in these homes. There is a center pedestrian zone running down most of Havana´s Fifth Avenue, and this area fills with pedestrians, runners, skaters, and others during the early morning and late afternoon hours.

Near where Fifth Avenue crosses Tenth Street, there is a clock bell tower in the center walkway that plays music to mark every half hour. It was this music that caught my attention during a recent morning walk down Fifth Avenue. Dozens of people ran past me as they exercised, quite a few of them with their dogs. I also noticed the beautiful landscaping along the walk, with many of the shrubs and bushes that are living sculptures. This area of Miramar is full of parks, which provide something of a haven from Havana´s summer heat. I continued walking until I reached the area where the traffic circles begin, and with the morning sun as my constant companion. I realized how peaceful the entire walk along Fifth Avenue is, especially when compared with other areas of Havana. This was a brief welcome escape from the hustle and bustle that is all too common on the streets of Cuba´s capital city.

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