The Bicycling Cuba authors said not to attempt cycling in Havana unless you are comfortable riding in urban centers like New York City or Toronto. Apparently Toronto has a reputation for being a crazy city to bike in, and rightfully so. Pier and I ride in Toronto every day, and we were ready for whatever Havana threw at us…
Which was nothing. Except for copious amounts of broken glass.
Cycling in Havana is safe and easy compared to Toronto. See chart:
|Cars flood streets like a constant plague of locusts.||Cars stick to a few main roads, and even there traffic is never bumper-to-bumper. A car on a side street is rare, like spotting a unicorn.|
|Parked cars on most streets mean constant fear of being door-prized.||No cars parked on streets, unless they are broken and haven’t moved in years.|
|Vehicles squeeze by cyclists, mere inches from sideswiping us.||Vehicles move to the other lane to pass cyclists. Seriously! It’s amazing!|
|Some glass on streets.||Glass EVERYWHERE! Impossible to avoid. So glad we switched our speedy Kojak tires for durable Marathon tires.|
So cycling in Havana is highly recommended. It’s a great way to see the sights, most of which, except for Old Havana, are pretty far apart. I don’t know how we would have made it to the Plaza de la Revolucion without bikes. It would have been a long walk. Or a crazy bus ride. Or taxi. Also, cycling along the Malecon is nice, despite the bumpy patches.