Colourful Cuba! Stunning photos capture the dream-like quality of Havana

If you’re looking for something to brighten your day, then these sunny photos of Cuba might fit the bill.

French photographer Helene Havard explored the capital of Havana in a bid to capture the city’s ‘dreamy’ side. 

Her colourful images show buildings painted in bold pastel shades, with vintage American cars transporting the viewer to a former era.  

If you’re looking for something to brighten your day, then these sunny photos of Cuba might fit the bill. French photographer Helene Havard explored the capital of Havana in a bid to capture the city’s ‘dreamy’ side

A bold artwork shows the late Argentine Marxist revolutionary, Che Guevara, alongside the Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez. The two men are symbols of the communist revolution

A bold artwork shows the late Argentine Marxist revolutionary, Che Guevara, alongside the Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez. The two men are symbols of the communist revolution

Helene's colourful images show buildings painted in bold pastel shades, with vintage cars transporting the viewer to a former era

Helene’s colourful images show buildings painted in bold pastel shades, with vintage cars transporting the viewer to a former era

A boy skateboards through the streets, while two young men strut their stuff 

A boy skateboards through the streets, while two young men strut their stuff 

Other shots show palm trees basking in the heat and locals going about their day-to-day lives. 

One particularly striking photo shows a young boy leaning against a wall adorned with graffiti.

The bold artwork shows the late Argentine Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara alongside the Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez. Both men are symbols of the communist revolution in 1959.

Explaining what drew her to Cuba, Helene said: ‘I wanted to visit as I have always wondered about a country that lives under communism. 

Locals take a break on a curb side. Explaining what drew her to Cuba, Helene said: 'I wanted to visit Cuba as I have always wondered about a country that lives under communism'

Locals take a break on a curb side. Explaining what drew her to Cuba, Helene said: ‘I wanted to visit Cuba as I have always wondered about a country that lives under communism’

The photographer said she took the pictures 'without thinking that much about it'. She said she was drawn to the colour and form of the buildings 

The photographer said she took the pictures ‘without thinking that much about it’. She said she was drawn to the colour and form of the buildings 

The city of Havana was founded by the Spanish in the 16th century and due to its strategic location it served as a springboard for the Spanish conquest of the Americas, becoming a stopping point for treasure-laden Spanish galleons returning to Spain

The city of Havana was founded by the Spanish in the 16th century and due to its strategic location it served as a springboard for the Spanish conquest of the Americas, becoming a stopping point for treasure-laden Spanish galleons returning to Spain

The buildings of Havana seen in a mix of blue, orange and pink with intricate designs and arched pillars  

The buildings of Havana seen in a mix of blue, orange and pink with intricate designs and arched pillars  

‘I fell in love with her decayed side. You can see different streets of Havana.’ 

The keen traveller said she snapped photographs ‘at random while strolling in the streets’.

She added: ‘I just took the pictures without thinking that much about it just because I liked it. I like the shape, colours and form. 

‘I’ve tried to show a dreamy vision of a place where it may be hard to dream under a communist regime.’

The city of Havana was founded by the Spanish in the 16th century and due to its strategic location it served as a springboard for the Spanish conquest of the Americas, becoming a stopping point for treasure-laden Spanish galleons returning to Spain.

Contemporary Havana can essentially be described as three cities in one: Old Havana, Vedado and the newer suburban districts.  

The city attracts over a million tourists annually. The Official Census for Havana reports that in 2010 the city was visited by 1,176,627 international tourists, a 20 per cent increase from 2005

The city attracts over a million tourists annually. The Official Census for Havana reports that in 2010 the city was visited by 1,176,627 international tourists, a 20 per cent increase from 2005

Old Havana was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1982. The city is also noted for its history, culture, architecture and monuments

Old Havana was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1982. The city is also noted for its history, culture, architecture and monuments

The city attracts over a million tourists annually. 

The Official Census for Havana reports that in 2010 the city was visited by 1,176,627 international tourists, a 20 per cent increase from 2005. 

Old Havana was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1982. It’s noted for its history, culture, architecture and monuments.

Helene’s photos of Havana have been compared to the aesthetics used by American filmmaker Wes Anderson in his surreal and dream-like movies.

‘Some people like it and some don’t as they think it is not the reality of Havana but this is my reality,’ added Helene.

‘I know some streets of Cuba are totally destroyed and different to the way I depicted them but I wanted to apply my personal touch to this city and I am glad if people are able to see beauty in them.’ 

Helene's photos of Havana have been compared to the aesthetics used by American filmmaker Wes Anderson in his surreal and dream-like movies

Helene’s photos of Havana have been compared to the aesthetics used by American filmmaker Wes Anderson in his surreal and dream-like movies

Helene says that some people don't like her photos as they don't think they show the real side of Havana. But she says in response: 'This is my reality'

Helene says that some people don’t like her photos as they don’t think they show the real side of Havana. But she says in response: ‘This is my reality’

Helene snapped this small bookstore, complete with an ornate outside lamp and faded sign 

Helene snapped this small bookstore, complete with an ornate outside lamp and faded sign 


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