Stereotypes about Cuban culture, would have you believe that Cubans are a bunch of cigar smoking, rum drinking beach salsa dancers. Not the case. Here are 5 things you need to know about people in Cuba that will help you better understand them.
The Warmth of the People in Cuba
Yes, it’s stereotypical to say about Cuba, but he people of Cuba are really truly welcoming!
Many visitors to Cuba will stay at a casa particular. This is a private home that rents out rooms in a bed and breakfast style of accommodation. You will have as much privacy as you like. But you will also be made to feel very much at home! We know it will make you forget that you’re paying to be there.
Your hosts will enquire about your day and offer advice or information about your stay. You’ll really do feel like you’re staying with friends.
In the rural areas of Cuba, many people don’t even lock their doors!
It’s wonderful that such communities still exist. If you’re lucky enough to stay in such a community, you will be made to feel most welcome.
Urban Life, Rural Charm or Beach Life?
Maybe you have an idea of Cuba as an island where people live by the beach or in the countryside? However this really is not how it is.
But there are so many beautiful small villages, towns and cities apart from Cuba to see. So DON’T spend all your time in the capital!
And so many amazing landscapes to see along the way!
The Delicate Matter of Politics in Cuba
Social norms in Cuba vary depending on location. Be aware of this when meeting people.
You may not agree with the socialist values introduced after the Cuban Revolution, but many Cubans hold them dear. Avoid criticizing this aspect of Cuban life, as it may not be well-received.
Cubans will be curious about you and your country, but avoid direct comparisons between two very different systems. Be respectful.
Some figures in Cuba, like Che Guevara, are national heroes. Even if you disagree with their beliefs, you can still discuss these matters without being critical.
Religion in Cuba
Despite what you might have heard, religious freedom is very much in effect in Cuba.
This was not always the case, and the church took on less importance in life after the revolution. It was a case of who needs the church when you have your country to provide for you.
Religion was never really banned, but it was seen to be of a out of line with the country’s socialist values. Religious freedom certainly exists in Cuba, and the majority of Cuban church-goers are Roman Catholics.
Having said that, the church never truly regained its former popularity after 1959. Most people in Cuba identify as Catholics but many are non practicing.
There are a couple of Jewish Synagogues in Cuba, and a Russian Orthodox Church as well.
Feel free to check out our amazing tours in Cuba.