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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Plaza de San Francisco

The oldest street in Havana is Oficios, which starts at Plaza de Armas and heads south to the Plaza de San Francisco.

Plaza de San Francisco and Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco de Asis. This was a missionary school for Franciscan friars.

On the opposite side of the Plaza de San Francisco is the Lonja del Comercio. It was the Stock Exchange until the 1959 Cuba Revolution. Today, it is an office building.

In front of the Lonja is this interesting sculpture--The Conversation.

Nearby is a sculpture featuring Chopin. Not sure what Chopin had to do with Cuba.

Palacio del Marques de San Felipe y Santiago de Bejucal, a hotel on the Plaza. Costs around $300/night.

Just a little further down from the Plaza is Coche Mambi, a restored train coach from 1900 that was used by the President of  Cuba in the early decades of the 20th century. It was formerly a property of the American-owned Cuban Railroad Company. Not sure why it was here--it was out of place.

Just beyond the Coche Mambi is the Camara de Representantes, the Republican House of Representatives until it was moved to the Capitolio in 1929. It's now a museum featuring documents from the Republican era (1902-1959) and the Literacy Campaign. Cuba has a literacy rate of 99.8%, compared to the US rate of 86%. 

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