Study Abroad in Havana

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A Guide to Studying Abroad in Havana

Despite years of withering neglect and a wildly turbulent history, Havana is a city that hemorrhages nothing but passion, vibrancy, and exuberance -- which will definitely shine bright when you study abroad in Havana.  How Havana ages as beautifully as George Clooney, is anyone’s guess. Maybe it’s the swashbuckling history, the survivalist spirit, or the tireless salsa energy that ricochets off walls and is absorbed by the souls of the Cuban people. If you’re ready to harness some of that saucy Cuban spirit for yourself, the adventure of studying abroad in Havana is yours for the taking!

Student Life in Havana

You'll be spoilt for choice when it comes to filling up your spare time in Havana. During your study abroad in Cuba, hop on a guagua or ride in style in an almendron and experience what brings Havana to life. No matter what you do, you will be Havan-a good time! 

The daytime hours in Havana can be easily exhausted admiring the tangible history oozing out of every nook and cranny in the city. Check out an exhibition at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, catch a show at the Gran Teatro, or take a stroll around the Hemingway Marina. You’ll find plenty of extra-credit materials to supplement your studies in Havana.

When evening strikes, head to the restaurant district to get a taste of the sizzling Cuban culinary scene and swig down a cortadito (the OG of energy drinks) so you can keep up with the vivacious Havana nightlife. Watch the sunset along the Malecón, enjoy midnight martinis in the underground jazz cafes, and salsa your heart out at La Casa de la Musica. After working up an appetite dancing the night away, feed that rumba-ly in your tumbly with some melt-in-your-mouth ropa vieja or yuca con mojo.

Goabroad Insider Tips

Even if you know a little español, Cuban Spanish is not what you took in high school. Cuban Spanish sounds like it is sipping on a mojito and has a permanent cigar wedged in the corner of its mouth. Whether it’s laziness or efficiency, syllables often get dropped and the only time you’ll hear a “D” is when you’re singing the alphabet. On top of that, there’s almost as much slang peppered into conversation as there are real words. ¡Ay, caramba!

Don’t let the mesmerizing colors, tropical drinks, and sublime beaches lull you into thinking that studying abroad in Havana will be an all-inclusive resort vacation. Of course there will be time for fun, but keep in mind that you will be in a different domain where normal daily happenings are more tightly regulated than you’re used to. Say adios to Western certainties and prepare to expect the unexpected during study abroad in Cuba.

If you’re ready to get serious about integrating your street smarts with your book smarts, listen as Havana is calling your nombre. Havana is a city of indefinable magic and it’s time to marinate yourself in the zest of it and let it seep into your soul. The world is literally your classroom when you opt to study abroad in Havana!

For even more information, read our comprehensive guide on study abroad in Cuba.

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A Guide To
Studying Abroad in Havana


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Spanish Studies Abroad Winter in Cuba

This 3-week program is offered during the month of January at Universidad de La Habana and all courses are taught by native Cuban faculty. Students take Introduction to Contemporary Cuba and are lodged in hotels. An array of cultural activities and study trips are designed to encourage direct interaction with the Cuban people. Earn four credits. Program licensed by the U.S. Government and spo...


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Budget Low Cost - Spanish Language & Cuban Culture

Get the chance to study in the country of sugar-white beaches, salsa music, and legendary cigars - Cuba! Sign up for the Spanish Language and Cuban Culture program in La Habana. This cost-effective study abroad program is open to students and adults from around the globe. It has weekly and monthly schedules throughout the year and comes with a range of features, including excursions and activit...


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USAC CUBA: La Habana - Cuban History, Society, & Politics

The Havana program offers an unparalleled opportunity to visit this enchanting island and legendary city to learn about its culture and society. It will also provide a unique occasion for understanding – firsthand – the multiple layers of history that make Cuba significant in North America and in Latin America. The courses will examine not only the history of former Spanish colonies, but also t...


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API at the University of Havana in Havana, Cuba

Spend a term living on the biggest of the Caribbean islands and have an abroad experience like no other! It is perfect for the student who is adventurous, has an intermediate to advanced grasp on the Spanish language, and would be interested in learning about Cuba first hand. With this unique opportunity, students will experience life as a true Cuban resident. They will have a chance to live w...


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ISA Study Abroad in Havana, Cuba

Havana is the most populous city in the Caribbean (population 2.1 million) and is Cuba's capital city. Havana is located in the northwest part of the country on the Gulf of Mexico, and has easy access to breathtaking beaches. The city offers a perfect balance of old charm and modern convenience that has yet to be branded by commercialism. There is a relaxed way of life, despite its big city si...


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CIEE Summer Cuban Studies in Havana, Cuba

Program Overview Spend four weeks immersed in Cuban culture, studying and getting to know the capital city of Havana—from the UNESCO World Heritage site to its many diverse suburbs. Study abroad in Havana and you'll: - Learn about the culture and society of revolutionary Cuba and explore the impact of local and global dynamics of life in Havana and throughout the country - Take your Spani...


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Nicaragua: Youth Culture, Literacy, and Media

Explore Nicaragua a generation after the revolution and investigate how young people in Nicaragua and Cuba are creatively advocating for change. In this program, students examine youth culture, advocacy, social change, and expression, across two generations in Nicaragua, and gain comparative perspectives on youth issues during an excursion to Cuba. Students are immersed in the politically ch...


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Carpe Diem Education Gap Year Language Exchange in Cuba

Travel back in time and tap into the vibrant charm of a previously “forbidden country.” Dance in the music-filled streets of Santiago. Practice your Spanish at the University of Havana. Learn about sustainable agriculture and farming in vibrant western Cuba. Embark on a once-in-a-lifetime journey through Cuba and make up your own mind about this complex and dynamic country that’s on the verge ...


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Arcadia University: University of Havana, Summer

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Printmaking in Havana Cuba

Taller Experimental de Gráfica, considered Cuba’s premier printmaking studio, has been a vital center for printmaking in Havana since the 1960s. This intensive workshop offers the unique opportunity to work in this historic, open-air facility alongside the Taller artists. Participants will be shown working methods of lithography and woodcut, and will be introduced to various color separation...