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“Trashy.”
Review of Havana Cathedral

Havana Cathedral
Ranked #13 of 232 things to do in Havana
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
33 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Trashy.”
Reviewed 18 August 2014 via mobile

Not the church. The church is incredible. It is both an architectural marvel and a historical emblem...a monument to the imagination and fervor of some very dedicated 18th century Jesuits. I was duly impressed with it.

The experience, however, was pathetic.

I am not religious and so I suppose using terms like "solemnity" and "due respect for holy spaces" is a tad ersatz.

However, I found myself a little sickened by the dog and pony show strewn all over the plaza set up for the express purpose of extracting money from tourists.

I realize that swindling tourists is Cuba's national sport.

But for the love of, well, God really...isn't it possible to allow sacred things their sacred-ness?

Somewhere between the tired, bored and becostumed old biddies who "just want a picture" with you and the clearly miserable little dogs in shirt collars and Ray-bans littering the front steps of the cathedral and throughout the plaza below, I kinda lost motivation to want to bother with this grand old church.

I mounted the steps anyway as graciously as I could manage (by which I mean that I didn't actually snatch the powdered wigs off the soliciting harpies and I didn't actually strangle the morons with the haberdashered doggies) only to be met by a chained off area crowded with at least 100 other gawking tourists snapping pictures of the sanctuary.

It wasn't the least bit solemn, restful or worth the effort...something I've come to associate with other such basilicas in my travels.

I also get the feeling that if the people who constructed the place could see the irreverence with which is treated today, they would have scrapped the project and done something else.

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2 Thank Danuel M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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San Juan, Puerto Rico
Level Contributor
104 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“Beautiful church”
Reviewed 4 August 2014

Havana Cathedral, officially Catedral de San Cristóbal, is a beautiful historic temple not to miss on your visit to La Habana. The church itself is built of sandstone which gives it a lot of character. The plaza in front of the Cathedral is beautiful and very much a not-to-be-missed place in this emblematic city. Actually, Havana's official name is San Cristóbal de la Habana.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank MiguelLVargas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ankara, Turkey
Level Contributor
145 reviews
97 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“excellent”
Reviewed 4 August 2014

It is a great building. It is a must see if you are in Cuba. It is much more terrific what you see from the pictures before.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank traveloebus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bath
Level Contributor
69 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“Lovely”
Reviewed 26 July 2014

Understated and peaceful for Latin America. Free to en5ter and wander around. A haven from the heat as well.

Visited July 2014
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2 Thank Derek S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brandon, Canada
Level Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“A Blessing”
Reviewed 25 July 2014

Such a blessing to visit. Not only beautiful history but the architecture was amazing. Loved learning the history of this Cathedral.

Visited March 2014
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1 Thank Serina14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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