September 7th, 2012
01:28 PM GMT
Share this on:

Havana, Cuba (CNN) - Cuba is experiencing a Russian invasion – but of a purely cultural kind.

According to the Cuban government, tourism from Russia has more than doubled in the last two years, an influx tour guides say has as much to do with Russian nostalgia for Cuba as it has to do with instability in favoured Russian vacation spots caught up in the Arab Spring.

Visitors can see mock ups of Soviet nuclear missiles at Cuban tourist sites - though 50 years ago the real thing led to a Cold War standoff.

The USSR once based thousands of military and intelligence personnel in Cuba, making the country a virtual Soviet colony. Now few traces of that era remain, except for the Russian embassy which still looms large over Havana, the country’s capital.

Cold War fears die hard, however. In July, Russia denied reports that the country was exploring new navel bases in Cuba.

But for now at least the greatest threat posed to the Russians who return to Cuba as tourists may be sunburn.

Filed under: BusinessGlobal Exchange

soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Lorenzo

    It's normal.China not expencive and russians have no money.

    September 8, 2012 at 10:49 am |
  2. OldJoe

    Navel Bases?
    Where do I sign up?

    September 10, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  3. bob

    The Russians have every right in the world to put a naval base, airbase, or whatever in Cuba, as long as the Cuban government allows them to do it. The USA created the "missile gap" and caused the Cuban Missile Crisis by surrounding the former Soviet Union with nuclear-tipped Jupiter missiles back in the 50/60's, and then lied about it, like our government does all the time...

    September 10, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  4. James Klimaski

    Cuba is Cold War Nostalgia to the U.S. Since we can't pick on Russia or China, or even Vietnam for that matter, who's left but Cuba. They are about all we can handle. It is no wonder no country pays any attention to Hillary Clinton as she flies around the world making more enemies then friends for the U.S. Of course, should Romney get to be President, even England will have to turn against us.

    September 10, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
  5. Jason

    Learn your history Bob. By the time the missile crisis occurred, the Jupiter missiles were largely obsolete and could have been easily destroyed by the Soviets. Why do you think it was such an easy concession for us to remove them in exchange for the Soviets removing their missiles from Cuba. Also, the late 50's/early 60's, the Soviets had us out gunned when it came to ICBM's anyways. All we had was our bomber force.

    September 12, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  6. ES

    Cuba is cheap ( because of the US embargo). There are also a lot of cubans who speak russian because they studied in russian colleges. This is purely an economic arrangement and is a fair and benefitial one.

    September 17, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  7. ahmed

    Stronger positions to teach English
    اقوى مواقع لتعليم اللغة الانجليزية

    September 17, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  8. Rodger Morris

    These Russian "navel bases" sound alarming. Are the Russians also constructing naval bases?

    September 19, 2012 at 2:05 am |
  9. Alex

    Russians have gone to Cuba for years. Why is it making the news right now?

    September 19, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
  10. icons design

    P.S. Please review deviantART: xcubic's Journal

    September 20, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  11. icon pack

    You commit asn error. I can defend the position.


    September 24, 2012 at 3:38 am |
  12. Martinez

    Very fantastic place of Russian tourists invade Cuba, I enjoy look in your website. Thanks for sharing information on website, I will be check next time.

    For more information please visit wensite :-

    September 24, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  13. Martinez

    Very fantastic place of Russian tourists invade Cuba, I enjoy look in your website. Thanks for sharing information on website, I will be check next time.

    For more information please visit website :-

    September 24, 2012 at 9:34 am |
  14. Troubledgoodangel/Voiceinthedesert

    If I am positive, andI usually am, CNN has just shown a picture of a flamboyant member of FEMEN visiting Cuba. This same person is now doing hard time in a Russian gulag! Just compare the pictures of the three FEMEN lesbians who insulted Putin with the pictures shown on the Internet. It's most certainly the same person.

    October 5, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  15. Ivan

    Russians have no money?! Where are you from? In Europe Russians are famous for spending in their holidays as much as Brits and Germans together

    January 3, 2013 at 3:17 am |

Post a comment


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About Global Exchange

Global Exchange explores how emerging markets are impacting and influencing the global financial community, at a time when business is a vital driver of the international news agenda.

Global Exchange is presented live from Abu Dhabi by emerging markets editor, John Defterios, who will be joined by CNN correspondents from around the world.

Global Exchange also includes the “GX20,” a global hotlist of some of the world’s biggest economic thinkers. The GX20 will be drawn from the key emerging markets, from across China, Russia, India and South Africa, contributing to the show and this blog.

Watch on CNN International Sunday to Thursday:

1100 ET
1600 GMT
1700 CET

Follow the show on Twitter @CNNGlobalEx and use the #CNNGlobalEx hashtag to join the conversation.

Powered by VIP