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Top 7 Things To Watch Before Visiting Cuba

March 17, 2020

Cuba has inspired filmmakers from all over the world. The island’s unique history, culture, music, food and natural beauty have appeared on the big screen for decades. These films provide travel lovers and visitors to the island with inspiration and relevant context to stimulate the senses and prepare them for a trip to Cuba.

Here are the top 7 things to watch before traveling to Cuba:

1. The Cuba Libre Story
The Cuba Libre Story | Photo via Netflix

The Cuba Libre Story is an eight-part miniseries on Netflix released in 2016. This series provides viewers with a general overview of Cuban history from the discovery of Cuba in the late fifteenth century to the historic visit of President Barack Obama to Cuba in 2016.

Viewers should recognize that biases may exist in some accounts of Cuban history. We encourage travelers to keep an open mind when visiting Cuba and engage with locals and hosts to gain a clearer picture of life in Cuba.

2. Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations in Cuba

Follow the late Anthony Bourdain around Cuba on Episode 1 of Season 11 of No Reservations as he highlights some of the best of Cuba during his trip to the incredible island in 2011. Bourdain explores Cuban baseball, traditional Cuban dishes and of course, vintage cars that have become one of the country’s iconic symbols.

This episode primes travelers with some of the unique wonders they will encounter on the island and is available to rent on Amazon Video.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations in Cuba | Photo via Amazon
3. A Tuba To Cuba

Music in Cuba is woven into much of the island’s cultural fabric and stretches beyond Cuba’s sandy shores. A Tuba to Cuba reveals the history of New Orleans’ Preservation Hall Jazz Band that traces its history back to Cuba.

This heartfelt documentary was released in 2018 and is perfect for music lovers and first-time visitors to the island. Watch it on Amazon Video.

A Tuba to Cuba | Photo via Amazon
4. Give Me Future

Released in 2017, Give Me Future is a documentary about the first major international music act coming to Cuba since the relaxation of the U.S. embargo under the Obama administration.

The documentary not only highlights the performance of Major Lazor in Cuba, but also shows artistic movements in Cuba, especially coming from younger generations. Note the film is rated R because of adult language and is available to watch on Apple Music.

Give Me Future | Photo via IMDb
5. Cuba and the Cameraman
Cuba and the Cameraman | Photo via Pinterest

Released in 2017 and available on Netflix, Cuba and the Cameraman is a unique documentary over 40 years in the making. Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Jon Alpert travels to Cuba in the 1970s to gather footage on three Cuban families. After the fall of the Soviet Union, Alpert returns with his camera to continue documenting the country.

He captures life in Cuba from a unique perspective as he films the families off and on over 40 years. This film gives viewers insights into the life of average Cubans and shows how the country has changed in recent years. Cuba and the Cameraman is available on Netflix.

6. Cuban Food Stories

Cuban born Asori Soto returned to Cuba in search of the flavors from his childhood. Created by Soto himself, Cuban Food Stories is a mouthwatering journey of culture, history and of course, food.

Ready your appetite for the culinary scene in Cuba as you enjoy this heartwarming documentary. Cuban Food Stories is available to watch on Amazon.

Cuban Food Stories | Photo via Forbes

7. Island Magic with CUBA CANDELA

Of course, no Cuba watch list is complete without a look into what Cuba Candela has to offer. Cuba Candela trips are fully customizable to include topics such as history, baseball, classic cars, Cuban cuisine, music and much more. Uncover the island magic, and discover Cuba in the most authentic way.


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