Lomographer Dominik Tomczyk writes about his experience exploring the storied cities of Cuba.
On October 25, 2017, I finally landed in Havana! I have dreamed about visiting Cuba for several years, since I wanted to see this communist country and compare the current situation to what I remember from the time of socialism in Poland. But I will not write about politics, so don't worry!
I decided to spend my last week in Trinidad. Pastel-colored houses, stone streets, temporary rains that rushed on winding streets and above all people: smiling, open-minded, friendly. I would like to live here to experience peace from everything!
Trinidad is a wonderfully preserved town from the time of the Spanish colony, where the clocks stopped in 1850. It is a place worth visiting where the nearest hotel is more than 10 km from the historical center. In 1988 UNESCO proclaimed Trinidad a World Heritage Site. Here you can see real Spanish colonial architecture. A tip to those planning to visit Trinidad: Take a camera and enjoy the beauty and atmosphere of this town!
What I saw, surprised me negatively. Cuba has stopped progressing for several dozen years. Those who have money get richer and those who work for 1 CUC per day will continue to work for nothing. That was not the case in Poland even during socialism. I hope that one day in Cuba it will change as in Poland.
La Habana (Havana), especially old Havana, is beautiful. Old cars, beautiful architecture. However, three to five kilometers from the historic center you can see the real Havana city— one that cannot be seen on postcards. You'll witness the real life of the inhabitants of Havana and the hard work of Cubans.
It's worth taking a ride on city buses to experience the atmosphere of the place. There are no bus stops, but everyone knows where the bus will stop! Unfortunately, there are no other foreign tourist.
In some place you see a large group of people with telephones is a sign that here is the best internet signal. Yes, there is internet, poor and expensive in Cuba compared to our prices.
La Habana has its own climate, but smaller towns are definitely more beautiful than the capital of Cuba. For me, Havana is just a transfer point to the other cities on the island. After all, you should see this city with your eyes!
Cuba is famous not only for very good cigars or Havana Club rum, which are considered as Cuban export national goods Cuba is also about old cars—all of which are colorful, very well maintained, and renovated. They are old beautiful American cars from the sixties, seventies to the twentieth century. Not only American cars but on the Cuban roads there are over 10,000 registered Polish cars: Polish Fiat 126p. In Polish, they call it the "little one" or Polskis, as the locals calls them. It's a Polish accent, especially for me, because I'm Polish.
No wonder I wanted to photograph these unique cars. Not only to photograph, but also to ride around Havana to feel the atmosphere of past years. It was an awesome experience!
All photos are taken with a Zeiss Ikon Nettar 518/16 (medium format) and Nikon F-601.