Visiting Hemingway’s House in Cuba

Doing my research on things to do in Cuba before I left I knew that I had to go to Hemingway’s house. He’s kind of a huge deal in Cuba and pretty much anything he’s ever touched has now been crowned a UNESCO site (slight exaggeration). Visiting Cuba you can go to his favourite Mojito bar (La Bodeguita), his top daiquiri bar (El Floridita), and visit the Hemingway Marina, so of course his house is a preserved and patrolled mausoleum sprawling acres in San Francisco de Paula, just 9 miles from Havana.

It was May 1st and we decided to celebrate Cuba’s Labour Day with a little trip. We took a Coco taxi with a very friendly driver and 30 minutes through outer Havana we had arrived. We arrived to closed gates and an empty house with just one security guard with his feet up at the ticket office. Gutted. Turns out the Hemingway House security celebrates Labour Day with a day off too.

I won’t explain how as I don’t want anyone to get into trouble, but 10 minutes later we were in. Unfortunately not in the house, but we could take a look around the grounds of where the great man lived and through the window this is what we saw…

Bedroom at Hemingway's House

His bedroom – single beds, interesting

graves at Hemingways House

The neat graves of his pets

Hemingway's House

The walkway up to the grand building

Hemingway's House and boat

His boat ‘Pilar’ is kept intact at his house

Hemingway's House bathroom

His bathroom, complete with books to keep him busy

Hemingway's House dining room

The dining room – loves his animal plaques

Hemingway's House his study

He had so many books lining the shelves, jealous

Hemingway's wardrobe in his house

Uniform and boots kept intact in his walk in wardrobe

Hemingways boat at his house

The beautiful Pilar boat

Hemingways House in Cuba

The house is also known as Finca La Vigia

Hemingways House view

Walkway to the incredible swimming pool

Hemingways House

A good spot for thinking…

Swimming pool at Hemingways House

Built in 1886 by a Spanish Architect Miguel Pascual y Baguer, Finca Vigia was purchased by Hemingway in 1940 for $12,500.

The path to the pool at Hemingway's House

The grounds are all kept beautifully in stark contrast the rest of the neighbourhood

Turret at Hemingways House

The house is known as his lookout, and this is where he did it from

Walking around Hemingway's House

Finca Vigía has made both the World Monuments Fund list of 100 Most Endangered sites, and The National Trust for Historic Preservation’s 11 Most Endangered Places.

I think if I had a house like this I could also write classics like Old Man and the Sea and For Whom the Bell Tolls. If only…


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  1. by Hogga on August 12, 2013  1:53 pm Reply

    aw pet graves :(

  2. by Kristin @ KEEN Digital Summit on August 14, 2013  3:27 am Reply

    I don't know why, but I'm slightly fascinated by the bedroom. Would not have thought pink (purple?) linens would have been Hem's thing.

    • by Vicky on June 23, 2014  8:35 pm Reply

      Yeah me neither! Maybe he was having a crazy day – or some minion sorted them for him.

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