Cuba's oldest museum was founded in 1899 by Emilio Bacardí Moreau, the former Santiago mayor whose rum-making family fled to Puerto Rico after the Revolution. Although the neoclassical structure's interior was horrendously remodeled in 1968—destroying many elegant details and cutting off air circulation—the collection it contains is fantastic. The basement, which you enter from the side of the building, has artifacts—including mummies and a shrunken head—from
indigenous cultures throughout the Americas. In the 1st-floor displays of colonial objects, the antique weapons and brutal relics of the slave trade are especially thought-provoking. Step outside a door to a cobblestone alley, along which are houses from the 16th to the 19th centuries. Around the corner is a traditional colonial patio. The 2nd-floor art gallery has works from the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Calle Pío Rosado (Comisaria) y Calle Aguilera, Santiago de Cuba, Santiago de Cuba, Cuba