Cubans love kids and kids invariably love Cuba. Welcome to a culture where children still play freely in the street. There's something wonderfully old-fashioned about kids' entertainment here, which is less about computer games and more about messing around in the plaza with an improvised baseball bat and a rolled-up ball of plastic.

Recommendations

  • Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabaña

Havana's huge fort has museums, battlements and a nightly cannon ceremony with soldiers in period costume.

  • Castillo de la Real Fuerza

This centrally located fort has a moat, lookouts and scale models of Spanish galleons.

  • Parque Maestranza

This park has bouncy castles, fairground rides and sweet snacks overlooking Havana Harbor.

  • Isla del Coco

A huge Chinese-funded amusement park in Havana's Playa neighborhood, the best of its type in Cuba.

  • Parque Lenin

A park with 'rustic' playground rides, boats, a minitrain and an equestrian center south of Havana.

  • Acuario Nacional

Various reproductions of Cuba's coastal ecosystems, including a marine cave and a mangrove forest, can be found at the nation's main aquarium, in the Miramar district.

  • Carnaval de la Habana

Music, dancing and effigies along Havana's Malecón in August.

  • Playas de Este

Miles of sandy beaches 20km east of Havana, with plenty of water toys available to rent. Makes a good day trip.

  • Fusterlandia

A riot of playful public art that has the ability to inspire any age group.