A decade of economic reforms and the gradually easing bureaucratic rules for Cuban small business owners has had a big effect on Havana‘s culinary scene, to the delight of locals and travelers alike.
While Havana restaurants were once quite limited in their scope and offerings, locally-owned paladares, cafes, and bars now offer an impressive array of food and drink, making the experience of eating your way through Havana better than ever.
Looking for the best spots to visit as you eat your way through Havana? These are the 25 best restaurants in Havana to add to your Havana itinerary, whether you’re here for just a day or two or have weeks to explore.
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Best Havana Restaurants
There are plenty of incredible Havana restaurants to try during your stay, offering everything from authentic Cuban dishes to Italian food, sushi, and much more. These are our very favorite recommendations for the best restaurants in Havana, including different types of places to eat in Havana and neighborhood-specific recommendations:
- Best Restaurant in Havana: La Guarida
- Best Restaurant in Old Havana: Jibaro’s
- Best Restaurant in Vedado: El Idilio
- Best Cafe in Havana: El Café
Below you’ll find our full Havana restaurant reviews and recommendations, plus the Havana map we’ve created to accompany this article, which includes the locations of all of the Havana restaurants, cafes, and bars that appear in this article. Click around to explore and even download the map to make your trip!
One additional travel tip before we begin: make sure to download the A La Mesa app before your trip to Cuba. This Cuba-specific app is like a local version of Yelp, offering the most extensive list of Cuban restaurants, cafes, and eateries. The offline functionality is a lifesaver for when you can’t access the internet in Cuba.
Read More: 10 Best Apps for Travel in Cuba
Restaurants in Havana, Cuba
1. La Guarida
Having welcomed everyone from President Obama to Leonardo DiCaprio and the Kardashians, La Guarida is a must-visit culinary destination in Havana with an impressive roster of fans and a spectacular menu to support all the hype. The gorgeous historic building and rooftop with spectacular vistas only add to the experience.
La Guarida highlights classic Cuban dishes and has a particularly excellent selection of seafood, with fresh fish, lobster, and octopus frequently stealing the show. Save space for dessert, as the lemon tart is a must if you happen to spot it on the menu when you visit.
Make sure to get a reservation to eat here – as far in advance of your visit as possible. Not only is La Guarida the most famous restaurant in Havana, but it’s also the most famous restaurant on the entire island. Ask the front desk at your hotel or the host of your guest house or casa particular for assistance in making a reservation if need be.
La Guarida | Concordia #418 – Centro Havana
2. El del Frente
El del Frente got its start – and its name – as an extension of the popular eatery O’Reilly 304 just across the street, but in our book, it might be even better than the original. A mix of Spanish and Cuban-inspired tapas and larger dishes offers a varied dining experience in a beautiful spot. Favorite dishes include ultra-fresh tuna and ceviche, as well as fish tacos.
El del Frente has an amazing rooftop space, among the best in Havana, that makes it popular until late in the evening. Occasional DJ nights make the rooftop feel more like a party than a dining spot at times, though with the restaurant’s excellent bar, who could complain?
El del Frente | O’Reilly #303 – Old Havana
3. El Idilio
Located on the vibrant Calle G in the gentile neighborhood of El Vedado, El Idilio is easily one of the best restaurants in Havana – but you might never know it at first glance. Its hidden patio location feels somewhat secretive and not “buzzy” in the least bit, but El Idilio offers a low-key dining experience but incredible meals that allow local flavors to shine.
Classic checkered tablecloths and a well-stocked bar offer a perfectly Caribbean take on fine dining, with a menu heavily featuring seafood like swordfish, shrimp, and more. The ropa vieja is also among the best we’ve tried in Havana, and it has been an exhaustive search! For those seeking an authentic taste of the region, look no further.
El Idilio | Calle 15 #351 – El Vedado
4. El Café
For delicious coffee and fantastic breakfast dishes of all kinds, look no further than El Café in the heart of Old Havana. Omelet sandwiches, oatmeal, and fresh juices make it one of the best brunch spots in Havana, hands down, though salads and sandwiches will have you coming back later in the day as well.
El Café is by far and away my personal favorite cafe in Havana – the gorgeously restored historic building with high ceilings and plenty of natural light screams Havana. Drop by, and you might even find me here working away on my next article between sips of iced coffee and pets of the sweet golden street cat that thinks she runs the place.
El Café | Amargura #358 – Old Havana
In the heart of the El Vedado neighborhood, Topoly offers refreshingly unique flavors amidst one Cuban restaurant after another. The restaurant’s Iranian owner has brought traditional dishes from home, marrying Cuban staples with traditional Middle Eastern classics unlike those you’ll find anywhere else in Havana.
On the vibrant at the corner of Calle 23 and D in Havana, Topoly is well worth a visit, with a lush garden and patio eating space making for an extra peaceful meal. The menu also makes it one of the best places in the city for flavorful vegetarian and vegan dishes.
Topoly | Calle 23 #669 – El Vedado
6. Brasserie 255
Located at Voya Boutique Hotel in the residential neighborhood of La Vibora, Brasserie 255 is an unexpected treat among Havana restaurants that is sure to surpass your expectations. A mix of Mediterranean and Cuban dishes makes for a unique fine dining experience in the hotel’s dining room and terrace overlooking the garden pool.
The classic ropa vieja is a hit, though there are plenty of dishes worth coming back for, including delicious breakfast offerings that make for a memorable morning.
Brasserie 255 | Juan Delgado #255 – La Vibora, 10 de Octubre
7. Parrandas Bar & Grill
Perched on top of a building with expansive vistas over the city, Parrandas Bar & Grill is more than just its breathtaking views. Affordable prices for everything from pizzas and pasta to classic Cuban dishes make it a local favorite, though its elevated options make it worth coming back again and again.
Parrandas is located in the mostly residential neighborhood of La Vibora, making it out of the way (a 10-minute taxi ride)for travelers staying in Havana neighborhoods like El Vedado and Old Havana. However, it’s walkable for those staying in some of the city’s most iconic mansions – like La Villa Teresa and La Rosa de Ortega, both among the best hotels in Havana.
Parrandas Bar & Grill | O’Farril #366 – La Vibora, 10 de Octubre
Jibaro’s is nestled in a quiet part of Old Havana, meaning that it’s not a catch-all for tourists looking for just anything to tide them over; it’s a place in-the-know travelers to Havana search out for its amazing bites and unique menu. A historic building gives a touch of charm to the small restaurant, though its real star is its flavorful menu of elevated and innovative Caribbean and Latin American dishes.
This restaurant is known as one of the more vegetarian and vegan-friendly restaurants in Havana, so be sure to search it out if you’re sick of hunting down meat-free dishes around the city. The bar is a highlight that any guest will love, with increasingly more elevated mixology offerings.
Jibaro’s | Merced #69 – Old Havana
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9. Casa Godo
Hidden away in the mostly residential Havana neighborhood of La Vibora, Casa Godo feels like the place locals will take their family on Mother’s Day for a special meal. We know; this is where you’ll find us on special occasions, too! Despite its beautiful atmosphere, the menu of mostly Cuban and Spanish classics is quite affordable and offers a great range of options.
One of the most memorable parts of a meal at Casa Godo is enjoying the expansive garden dining space, filled with lush foliage and hidden away from the street. This spot is usually quite quiet and laidback, inviting you to enjoy what will feel like a private Cuban garden for the afternoon.
Casa Godo | Avenida Mayia Rodriguez #358 – La Vibora, 10 de Octubre
10. Malecon 663
Part of the increasingly popular boutique hotel of the same name located directly on the city’s famous oceanfront promenade, the rooftop restaurant at Malecón 663 is one of the coolest places to eat in Havana. Frequently local DJs show up for sets around sunset, turning it into a bonafide party in the evening on the weekends.
Whatever time of day you visit Malecón 663, you’ll love the menu. Everything from breakfast classics to freshly grilled seafood makes it tempting at all times of the day. The incredible views over the sea are enough to make you want to come back for more, and if you’re close enough to the front of the terrace, you can count the colorful classic cars cruising down the street.
Malecón 663 | Malecón #663 – El Vedado
In the heart of the upscale Miramar neighborhood, Otramanera offers a uniquely elevated fine dining experience at what easily ranks among the very best restaurants in Havana. The dining room space at Otramanera is impressively modern but very welcoming, with friendly, helpful staff really setting the scene for an excellent dining experience.
Incredibly unique flavors and fresh ingredients make for a one-of-a-kind menu of international dishes that still manages to highlight the best of Cuban flavors. While Otramanera is a bit pricier than some other restaurants in Havana, it’s really in a caliber of its own in many ways, making the price tag well worth the experience; you’d easily be paying triple if this were anywhere other than Cuba.
Otramanera | Avenida 35 #1810 – Miramar
12. Chacon 162
Located on a pedestrian-only side street in Old Havana, Chacon 162 has long been one of the best Havana restaurants in the area, with a classic Cuban menu and delicious mixed drinks. The seafood dishes are incredible at Chacon 162, with the lobster being particularly memorable, up there with our favorite places to eat the dish in Varadero.
The decor at Chacon 162 is fun, with an entire vintage motorcycle suspended over the well-stocked bar at the entrance. However, the outdoor dining along the side of this Old Havana restaurant is even more popular, with large umbrellas making for shaded dining throughout the day. Sometimes you’ll get lucky and find that the street has been closed off with live music, making it a real party.
Chacon 162 | Chacon #162 – Old Havana
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13. Sia Kara Café
Hidden directly behind El Capitolio in Old Havana, Sia Kara Café feels like the cool, bohemian bar you’d picture of a Havana of ages past, filled with character and great food to match. The menu isn’t horribly extensive here, but it’s a great option whether you’re looking for a lunch spot or a low-key evening.
Sia Kara Café has excellent drinks, with a truly impressive drinks menu. The decor just adds to the experience, with an eclectic mix of art and antiques to draw your attention. There’s frequent live music in the evenings, drawing patrons in from outside of this somewhat hidden spot.
Sia Kara Café | Industria #502 – Old Havana
Step into a slice of Italy right in the heart of Havana at Ecléctico. Nestled into the first floor of the boutique hotel Paseo 206 – one of our favorite boutique hotels in Cuba – this spot is nothing if not authentic; it’s the brainchild of an Italian and Cuban couple who also own Havana’s only true Italian market.
You really can’t go wrong with any menu item at Ecléctico, though delicious pastries have made it one of the city’s new favorite breakfast spots, and excellent charcuterie boards and pasta dishes make it worth returning to for dinner. An intimate and comfortable dining space inside, with space for a few tables and chairs on the patio, makes it a serene retreat.
Ecléctico | Avenida Paseo #206 – El Vedado
15. O’Reilly 304
A staple of any foodie’s journey through Havana for almost a decade now, the eternally popular O’Reilly 304 is renowned for its spectacular menu food and its unending list of drinks. Everything from tacos and tostones to lobster and especially its famous ceviche make the menu among one of the city’s best – you just can’t go wrong when ordering here.
The restaurant is tiny – this is what gave rise to its sister spot, El del Frente, located just across the street – so come early to get a good table, especially during the high season of travel in Havana. Can’t get a table? No worries, in our opinion, El del Frente might even have it beat.
O’Reilly 304 | O’Reilly #304 – Old Havana
16. El Cocinero
Part of the appeal of El Cocinero has long been its location: it sits directly along Havana’s Fábrica de Arte Cubano. Dinner at El Cocinero before a long evening at Fábrica de Arte Cubano is practically a rite of passage for every visitor to Havana. However, there’s much more to this place than just its location, earning it a place among the best Havana restaurants time and time again.
El Cocinero offers a mix of international inspiration in its menu, with flavors you won’t find in most other spots in Havana. If you’re more into the culinary experience than the see-and-be-seen atmosphere, come in the afternoon for lunch and enjoy the laidback atmosphere on the rooftop terrace or at the bar.
El Cocinero | Calle 26, entre Calle 11 y Calle 13 – El Vedado
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17. Lo de Monik
Old Havana’s sunny cafe Lo de Monik is a friendly, no-fuss spot with delicious food for any time of the day. The menu is a bit of a strange mix, but it all works; among the best dishes on the menu, Lo de Monik has delicious ropa vieja and excellent seafood tacos featuring either shrimp or octopus with all the fixings.
We also love Lo de Monik for brunch; with its strong coffee and delicious breakfast options, it’s among the better cafes in Havana! Make sure to add one of the fresh juices to your order; they’re the perfect things for cooling down on a long, hot day in Havana.
Lo de Monik | Chacon y Compostela – Old Havana
18. El Dandy
El Dandy is quite tiny, with just a few tables and a handful of seats at the bar, but it’s worth squeezing into this space at any time of day. Perhaps due to its small size, it feels impossibly cool and even hidden, though we love it so much we’re determined to make it famous.
Amazing cocktails and delicious plates of classic Cuban and international dishes are favorites with locals and visitors alike (though vegetarians, be warned, the menu can be a bit meat-heavy).
El Dandy is located just a few blocks away from El Capitolio in the heart of Old Havana, directly across the street from Clandestina, and just across the plaza from El Café – it’s really the perfect spot to enjoy lunch or dinner after exploring the neighborhood. We recommend it among our top favorite restaurants in Havana on our Havana itineraries.
El Dandy | Teniente Rey y Villegas – Old Havana
19. Al Carbón
With proper tablecloths and waiters in somehow spotless white shirts and ties, Al Carbón feels like an old-world, family-style spot, with black and white photographs on the walls and antique furniture completing the scene. Hidden behind a historic facade in the heart of Old Havana, it has much more to offer than just ambiance, with iconic meat-focused dishes offering a culinary tour of the best of Cuba.
You may recognize this place if you’re a Food Network fan; Guy Fieri visited the kitchen for an episode of his show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, when he learned how to make the chef’s famous lamb ribs, which require 21 days of preparation. He called the dish the best thing he’d eaten in Cuba.
Al Carbón | Aguacate #9 – Old Havana
20. Fangio Habana
Fangio Habana is almost too cool for its own good. From its stunning interior design – the perfect mix of historic, classically Cuban touches and modern glass and bright white – to its expansive outdoor spaces, including both a patio and rooftop terrace, it curates a chic and cosmopolitan atmosphere you won’t want to leave.
The food at Fangio Habana is almost even better than the atmosphere, which makes it one of our favorite restaurants in Havana, hands down. The Peruvian ceviche and classically Cuban dishes are incredible, and the cocktail list is somehow even better.
Fangio Habana | Avenida Paseo #458 – El Vedado
21. Santy Pescador
Santy Pescador became instantly famous when it appeared as the first restaurant to be featured on the much-anticipated Cuba episode of chef Anthony Bourdain’s show, Parts Unknown. While plenty of visitors make the trek to this out-of-the-way restaurant to relive Bourdain’s experience, this culinary destination has much more to offer than just the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of a famous chef.
This seafood spot is located on tiny Rio Jaimanitas, an inlet of the ocean sprinkled with fishing boats fresh from pulling in the catch of the day; a no-frills terrace with waterfront views sets the scene for a memorable meal. The freshest of seafood dishes is just the start, with Japanese inspiration elevating the experience and making sushi and sashimi some of the stars of the menu.
Santy Pescador | Calle 240 A # 3C23 y Río Jaimanitas – Playa
22. Cafe Bohemia
Duck behind a historic facade in the middle of Old Havana’s Plaza Vieja and escape to Cafe Bohemia, a peaceful respite full of character. A laidback, historic courtyard hides the cafe, which features a rotating menu and feels a bit magical with its twinkling string lights.
Excellent coffee and morning-time staples make Cafe Bohemia one of the best breakfast spots in Havana. However, it is popular throughout the day for dishes like sandwiches and ropa vieja, though the menu also has decent vegan and vegetarian options. Mixed drinks in the evening are quite good.
Cafe Bohemia | San Ignacio #364 – Old Havana
Located in the center of Old Havana, Antojos does all the Cuban classic dishes well. Whether you go for the ropa vieja, beans and rice, or barbequed meats, you won’t be disappointed with the options here. The croquetas are absolutely delicious as is the arroz con leche, so save room for dessert!
Antojos is located on a tiny sidestreet in Old Havana and offers outdoor seating that is particularly special in the evening when twinkling string lights crisscross the calle and offer instant ambiance to any meal.
Antojos | Callejón Espada entre Cuartles y Chacón – Old Havana
24. Kilometro Cero
A block and a half off of El Capitolio in Old Havana, Kilometro Cero is a restaurant and bar with lots to love. The solid menu of Cuban and international dishes isn’t revolutionary, but its good enough to come back for.
The real star at Kilometro Cero is the impressive drink menu that trends towards true mixology, making it a popular spot in the evening. The occasional live music in the later evenings will get you out of your seat and turns Kilometro Cero into more of a bar than a restaurant. It’s the perfect place to continue the night.
Kilometro Cero | Monserrate #437 – Old Havana
Michifu feels cool the second you step in the door. Behind heavy velvet curtains find tongue-in-cheek art, dramatic chandeliers, and a centerpiece bar before heading outside to the mural-plastered patio. It’s laid-back luxury, and we love it.
Dishes worth ordering again and again are the grilled lobster (and the lobster enchiladas!), as well as Cuban classics like tostones, croquetas, and fresh fish. The cocktails are worth the visit alone. Reservations are recommended, especially on the weekend and in the high season for travel in Cuba.
Michifu | Concordia y Escobar – El Vedado
Carley Rojas Avila is a bilingual travel writer, editor, content marketer, and the founder of the digital travel publications Home to Havana and Explorers Away. She is a serial expat and traveler, having visited 40+ countries and counting. Carley has written for publications like Travel + Leisure, MSN, Associated Press, Weather Channel, Wealth of Geeks, and more. Find her front row at a Bad Bunny concert, befriending street cats, and taste-testing every pizza in Havana.