Park your car and put away your cell phone because really exploring Little Havana requires your feet and all of your senses. Walk around, wave to people you see, and say hola — even if your Spanish isn’t the best. There’s a lot packed into this neighborhood, so if you get a little tired, stop for a cortadito – or a mojito – along the way.
Calle Ocho Walk of Fame
Miami’s got its own Walk of Fame, right on Calle Ocho recognizing Latino stars with ties to South Florida. The first star was put in place in 1987 for Celia Cruz, the famous Cuban salsa singer, and it’s now got about 30 more famous folks enshrined in its pink marble stars. You’ll find them between 12th and 17th Avenue, so look down as you’re headed to Maximo Gomez Park to watch a heated game of dominos.
What they do: Sightseeing
Website: Visit Here
Address: 801 SW 15 Ave.
Cuba Tobacco Cigar Co.
Cuban Tobacco Cigar Co. will make you think about cigars in a whole new way. With generations of experience, the company makes cigar rolling into an art form and they’ll answer your questions about the process with passion and obvious knowledge. Walk in throughout the day and chances are you’ll see someone behind the counter rolling cigars and others who stopped in for a smoke break. Outside, founder Señor Pedro Bello will be sitting on a chair enjoying the breeze and a cigar.
Cubaocho Museum & Performing Arts Center
Cubaocho is truly a Miami gem. Part performing arts center, part art gallery, part event space, and part bar (featuring the largest selection of rums around), you will almost certainly have a good time no matter when you stop by. Make sure you walk around, check out the art, get a rum to sample, and take it to the middle courtyard to soak it all in.
Officially named Maximo Gomez Park, this landmark is more than just dominoes and old Cuban guys. It’s where the neighborhood convenes to discuss current politics, where nostalgia hangs in the air as players swap stories of days past, and where trash talking reaches a whole new level. Some would argue its more fun to watch a match than to play. Don’t let their age fool you, these guys are fierce. Challenge them at your own risk.
What they do: park, dominoes
Hours: Sunrise to Sunset
Address: 801 SW 15 Ave.
The Futurama Gallery is a creative coworking space in Little Havana that hosts 12 artist studios and five offices. They have monthly networking, art, and music events, all with the goal of advancing the knowledge and practice of contemporary visual arts and culture.
Jose Marti Park
Jose Marti Park sits right along the Miami River at the border of Brickell and Little Havana. Between the pool and plethora of activities, like outdoor yoga, you’ll almost always have company when you visit this park. You’re also welcome to just hang out and watch the boats go up and down the Miami River.
La Casa de los Trucos
La Casa de los Trucos has got all of your disguise needs covered, offering weird costumes year round. It carries more than 10,000 costumes at great prices, many of which you wouldn’t be able to find at your local costume store chain – hence the round-the-block lines. La Casa de los Trucos knows its customers run on Miami time. That’s why they employ an extra 30-plus workers on the week leading up to Halloween, their busiest time of the year.
Located on bustling Calle Ocho, this theater specializes in foreign and independent films from Spain, Italy, and France, just to name a few. The theater itself is a wonder, with its original Art Deco architecture in all its splendor. It has two screening rooms with ample seating. Tickets are at reasonable prices and their concession stand is cheap, unlike the massive multiplexes in other parts of the city.
Viernes Culturales is a monthly art, music, and culture festival on the last Friday of every month that brings together merchants, residents, design professionals, and community leaders to promote and preserve the neighborhood’s rich culture. Head here for live music, dancing, domino games, cigar rollers, and local arts and crafts. The best part? It’s all for free thanks to The City of Miami Planning Department, the City of Miami Commission, The Latin Chamber of Commerce, and Little Havana Development Authority.
Walking tour with Dr. Paul George
Dr. Paul George is Miami’s premiere historian. While he offers walking tours all over the city through HistoryMiami, his Little Havana tour is the one you absolutely shouldn’t miss. This is where Dr. George was raised and has lived for the last 30 years. Take a stroll down Calle Ocho and through the more residential parts of the community as well. You’ll learn about Little Havana’s evolution from the hub of the Jewish community to the neighborhood that celebrates the Cuban culture unlike any other – and of course take a break to play dominos.