Built in 1515 for Diego Velázquez, one of the first conquistadors of Cuba, the magnificent stone edifice on the west side of the park is the oldest residential building in Cuba. It now houses the Museo de Ambiente Cubano, a wonderful collection of early and late colonial furniture, curios, weapons and fripperies which offers one of the country’s best insights into colonial lifestyles, and is so large that it spills over into the house next door. There are choral performances here every Sunday at 10.30am and traditional music peñas throughout the week. Ask for the timetable.

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12 tips for backpacking Cuba

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Video: a 1 minute guide to Cuba

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