Transportation in La Habana. La guagua.

If you want to move around La Habana there are quite a lot of different possibilities. There are horse-drawn carraiges that cost only a handfull of pesos and are quite an affordable way to get around both cheap and quickly. There is the good old taxi which are quite expensive, depending on the the distance they usually cost between 2 and 5 CUC (1CUC=1US$). There are bycicle taxis which circulate only in the inner town and are quite overpriced and slow (around 2 CUC). There sometimes are motorcycle taxis which I haven’t tried so far and there is the famous Coco Taxi (3 CUC) which basically is a scooter with three wheels and a round hardtop. If you have a death wish, by all menans take one of these yellow eggs – they give you a thrill like no rollercoaster ever could :)Then there are the Yank Tanks, called “carros” which have Taxi written on them and represent a fun, cheap and quick way to get from one place to the other. These carros, usually very stylish but extremely run-down old Chevrolets, Fords or Buiks are group taxis so you have to ask the driver which direction he is going and then decide if you get on or not. One ride is 10 Pesos and therefore about 40 Cents. Once you get into one of these old beauties be prepared for some serious petrol stink, loud metal squeaks and the seats’ springs up your ass. But it’s fun, I love these cabs!
Yes, and there is the good old bus, in cuban called “Guagua”. With only 40 cents of 1 Peso one ride costs the equivalent of a little less then 2 Eurocents and is by far the cheapest transportation medium. It’s not exactly fast and comfortable but SO cheap that it’s usually the cubans’ and my first choice.
If you want to take a bus downtown from where I live (and I live REALLY central) consider at least 45 minutes. You get out of your apartment, to the bus station and prepare to miss at least two or three busses (guaguas) because they are so full that any tokio metro seems like a matrimonial suite in comparison. Don’t ask me how many times i’ve been on busses already, just hanging on with one hand to some squeaking metal grip, with both feet at the edge of the the entrance step because the guagua was so full that it would just not accommodate more people. I’ve seen plenty of people falling of busses, some even climbing into them through the windows. If you are lucky enough to get into one of these famous stinkholes it’s a good idea to take a comfortable position once you enter a guagua because there is no way to move even one centimeter once you’re being squashed into there. think when you have to get off and where to stand to be able to follow the flow of people that have to exit the bus to make a corridor for the ones that want to get off. extreme humidity and bad ventilation round up the experience. Oh, and mostly there is also loud music that the bus driver puts on. Quite an experience, alltogether.

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6 thoughts on “Transportation in La Habana. La guagua.

  1. Haha:)amor,no puedo imaginarte en un guaga,pero,bueno, és una buena experiencia si quieres conocer países en america:)aprovecha muchisimo!pienso que estas aprendendo mucho y vendo la grande diferencia entre los países desarrollados y los países pobres! Escribes siempre maravillosamente.saudades.muchos besos,amor

    1. Mi vida! gracias por tu commento cariñoso . Sí que es verdad que estoy en un proceso de aprendizaje sencillamente increible. Las cosas que veo cada día son muy fuertes – creo que jamas podré vover a ser la misma persona como antes. Estas experiencias aqui te cambian mucho el chip. Ya no veo la hora de abordar mi viaje por la isla de cuba y de pues empezar mi recurrido de toda america central. Más cosas que veo más me gusta este continente y más me pongo curioso…
      muchos besos, y ya nos veremos pronto!

  2. Hallo Benno,

    lese Deine Reiseberichte mit groesster Begeisterung. Bereite soeben eine Reise nach Ecuador im Sommer 2012 vor.
    Vielleicht treffen wir zusammen ! Wir möchten zu den Galapagosinseln.
    Ich wünsche Dir von Herzen alles, alles Gute und passe nur recht auf Dich auf !
    Liebe Grüsse
    Barbara Burghardt

    1. Hallo Barbara und: wie schön von dir zu hören! Danke für deinen lieben Kommentar, ich würde mich sehr freuen wenn das hinhauen sollte in Ecuador. Noch kann ich allerdings gar nix sagen oder planen, muss erstmal schauen wie ich bis Südamerika durchkomme, wie weit ich bis dahim mit der Arbeit bin, wo und ob ich bis dahin einen Job gefunden haben werde und so weiter… Liebe Grüße aus dem drückend schwülen Havanna!

    1. of course i do, miguel! in fact, i am reminded of you a lot of times with all these expressions and of course the transformations of “s” into “j”. “laj chicaj ejta noche je van a trej conciertoj”. jejeje

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