El Capitolio is one of Havana's landmark sights. Its neoclassical facade distinctly recalls the US Capitol building in Washington, DC – on purpose. It took three years to complete its construction in 1929, but work on the intricate interiors continued for another decade. With its towering granite columns, a huge statue-flanked stairway leading to grand entrance, and a 91m-high (300ft) dome topped by a replica of a 16th century Florentine sculpture of the god Mercury, inside is a sight to behold. A major, restoration project – the largest of its kind ever undertaken in Havana Vieja - began in 2012, with the iconic dome currently under scaffolding. Works are due to be completed in 2015; until then, it remains closed to visitors.
Things to see in Havana
The following travel agencies, open daily from 0830-1800, are operated by the Cuban government and provide traveller information:
Calle 23 corner of Calle L, Vedado
Tel: (7) 833 3569 or 834 4135.
Calle 23, corner Calle M, Vedado
Tel: (7) 838 4884.
Obispo #524, between Bernazas and Villegas, Habana Vieja
Tel: 866 3333.
Information is also available at the airport's Terminal Three (tel: (7) 642 6101).