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Cuba: Music, Culture & Cuisine

Cuba is one of the most fascinating islands in the Caribbean and is known throughout the world for its music, dance, and culinary traditions. We partnered with a company that is fully licensed to host ALL nationalities legally and we designed a tour that’s tailor-made to our groups. Join us on what we hope to be the first of many trips to the “Pearl of the Antilles”!

Duration: 7 nights / 8 days
Dates: March 16-23, 2024
Trip starts/ends: Havana Airport, Day 1 and Day 8 (tailored to your flights)
Activity level: 1 – Easy: exploring cities on foot, mostly paved or cobblestone, minimal climbing, with one optional hike in the countryside (rated level 2) [more info]
Group size: min. 4 - max. 14

Highlights

* explore Old Havana with a local guide
* tour Ernest Hemmingway’s former estate
* visit the colorful city of Cienfuegos
* spend three nights in delightful Trinidad
* enjoy private concerts with local musicians
* see how delicious local dishes are made
* ride in Havana’s famous Classic Cars
* take a salsa lesson
* tour a rum distillery (and try a wee taste!)
* relax on a beautiful beach (March is perfect for swimming!)
* visit a traditional cigar producer and try a rum & cigar pairing
* eat at the best private restaurants, known as paladares
* stretch your legs with an easy hike to a beautiful waterfall
* see traditional dance performances
* visit some of the island’s fascinating artist and artisan workshops

Trip price includes

7 nights in upscale B&Bs, 7 breakfasts, 3 dinners plus 5 lunches, all visits and transfers as per itinerary, at least 1 bilingual guide to accompany you throughout the week

Not included

4 dinners, 1 lunch, drinks other than water at meals; tips for local guides, drivers and hotel services; Cuban visa/tourist card; and anything not listed in the inclusions

ITINERARY

Days 1 – 3: Welcome to Havana!
Spend your first three days in vibrant Old Havana, whose elegant colonial buildings and sunny squares will welcome you with bright colors and music spilling out of every doorway. We’ll hit the highlights, like riding in a Classic Car down the famous Malecon waterfront drive, visiting cigar and rum producers, strolling through Ernest Hemingway’s former estate and gardens, and taking in some electric music and dance performances, but we’ll also get off-the-beaten-track and meet personally with artists and musicians, some of whom welcome us into their homes for private concerts. Our hotel in Havana is a lovely upscale B&B built into one of the city’s historical old city blocks. Enjoy a room with a sea view and then sip a minty mojito from the rooftop bar.

Days 4 – 6: The Colonial Cities of Cienfuegos and Trinidad
Get out of the city for 3 days in two of the most beautiful towns on the island. Both Cienfuegos and Trinidad are UNESCO World Heritage protected sites for their unique architecture and historical importance in the Caribbean. Cienfuegos has the largest number of Neoclassical buildings in the Caribbean and Trinidad was important for Cuba’s sugar trade. We stay three nights in a restored private home with colorful floor tiles and Old World charm. Dine at some of the best paladares in the region and enjoy live music and salsa dancing once the sun goes down. We can also hike out to a waterfall in the verdant hills nearby and then find time to relax on a gorgeous sandy beach.

Days 7 & 8: Final day in Havana and Departures
Drive back to Havana and enjoy a magical afternoon with a famous local dance troupe, who will show you how the island’s Afro-Caribbean rhythms captivated and inspired musicians and dancers around the world. We have one final dinner together before saying a fond “Adios” to Cuba on Day 8. We’ll provide you with suggestions on flights, travel insurance, and getting your visa so don’t hesitate to ask if you have questions!

Both Manu and Claire are planning on coming and have put a special price on this inaugural tour, so we hope to see you there!

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