VaraderoOverview of the City in HavanaEl Morro Spanish fortress in HavanaFlower ladies, Plaza de Armas, HavanaShredded Beef in Old Havana Restaurant

Varadero

Overview of the City in Havana

El Morro Spanish fortress in Havana

Flower ladies, Plaza de Armas, Havana

Shredded Beef in Old Havana Restaurant

Description

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

  • Enjoy this perfect opportunity to get to know the Cuba of yesterday in Havana, Varadero, and Matanzas with a stay in a high-end private home
  • See up-close how the world’s acclaimed Cuban cigars are made from growing and drying tobacco to rolling
  • Discover the vibrant mosaic art and the inspired neighborhood project of the “Picasso of Cuba”, José Fuster
  • Stroll along the Malecón, sip on a Mojito at the Hotel Nacional, and try some salsa dance steps on this educational exchange
  • Learn about Cuba and its people firsthand via interchanges with Cuban artists, writers, museum curators, musicians, students, and locals
  • Visit Varadero and Matanzas including the Famous DuPont Mansion on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico


Itinerary

Day 1 - HAVANA

Arriving in Havana, your immersive and enriching Cuban experience begins right away. First on the agenda is a visit to Finca Yoandra to take part in a cultural and educational exchange about their sustainable agriculture outreach project. Sip on a Cuban cocktail while you tour the medicinal gardens and interact with the representatives from community projects for children and the elderly Enjoy your first taste of authentic Cuban cuisine for lunch at the finca’s privately owned restaurant, or “paladar,” Il Divino. Next, visit the community art project, Muraleando “muraling” or mural-making. The goal of Muraleando is to get children off the streets of Havana and inspire them to collaborate in a community project. Transfer to your Casa Particular for check-in. This evening we will share in a flavorful Cuban dinner at a local paladar where you will have the opportunity to meet the chef. Tonight, you can join in a variety of optional activities such as the nightly Cannon Blast Ceremony held in La Cabaña fort at 9pm, showcasing a theatrical demonstration where actors dressed in full 18th-century military regalia reenact the firing of a cannon over Havana harbor – a ritual that used to signify the closing of the city gates. (L,D)

Day 2 - HAVANA

After breakfast join in an enlightening walking tour of Old Havana, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, while participating in open dialogue with locals, artists, and musicians. Learn about the challenges of renovating the city’s exquisite historic buildings and see some of the area’s elegant restorations as you stroll the charming cobblestone streets. Tour the Museum of the Revolution that displays documents and artifacts, weapons, and planes from the 1950s’ revolution. The museum is housed in the former presidential palace that was the home to Cuba’s leaders from the 1920s until 1959. Enjoy lunch in Old Havana at a paladar. After lunch, you will have a special opportunity to experience a performance by the Habana Compás dance troupe, featuring an exhilarating mix of percussion and dance rooted in flamenco and Afro-Cuban rhythms and moves that is sure to thrill you. The evening is yours to explore this great city at your leisure. (B,L)

Day 3 - HAVANA

Head out after breakfast to explore an authentic Cuban Cigar Factory where you will learn about the “readers” and meet the “rollers.” Visit one of the area’s museums such as el Museo National de Bellas Artes -- the Museum of Fine Arts, comprised of two buildings exhibiting inspired collections from the colonial times up to contemporary works. Have lunch at Mediteráneo, an artisanal paladar in the Vedado neighborhood for a fresh farm-to-table meal created by the privately-owned restaurant’s Italian chef. Afternoon at leisure – why not shop at the “Almacenes de San Jose” artisans’ market. This evening the options for discovery abound with free time to venture out for dinner on your own. Consider joining in an optional excursion such as a visit to Havana’s Fabrica de Arte Cubano, an independent project and meeting place where the island’s avant-garde arts can be enjoyed, with all kinds of arts – music, painting, dance, and more. (B,L)

Day 4 - HAVANA

Today greets you with exciting new experiences to live authentically. Join in an all-day excursion to Matanzas and Varadero. The day’s adventures take you to discover the stately Dupont Mansion, a circa-1930 beachfront mansion overlooking the Gulf of Mexico that serves as the clubhouse for Varadero Golf Club, and on from there you will visit Casa de la Cultura that seeks to promote art and literature. This unique venue is also home to Guaracheros de Regla, one of the Cuba’s most famous “comparsas,” or carnival dance troupes. Later, take in the awe-inspiring beauty of the famed beach at Varadero. Share in a delicious meal at a paladar and then return to Havana for an evening at leisure. (B,L)

Day 5 - HAVANA

This morning is at leisure so take some time to tour the city at your own pace, participating in activities in support of the Cuban people. This afternoon, get ready to have the experience of a lifetime as you share time with the members of a private car club and enjoy riding in Classic cars to explore the art at Fusterlandia, home and studios of acclaimed artist José Fuster who specializes in ceramics, painting, drawing, engraving and graphic design. This evening we will enjoy a farewell dinner at Fuster's Art Studio and community project, sharing in the delightful sounds of live music following dinner and the opportunity to meet these Cuban performers. (B,D)

Day 6 - HAVANA TO USA

Time permitting before your transfer to the airport, visit Finca Vigia, Ernest Hemmingway's winter home from 1939 to 1960. It was built in 1886 and now serves as a museum where visitors can see his 9,000-volume library, living quarters, yacht “Pilar”, as well as the actual typewriter on which he wrote some of his greatest works. (B)

Print Havana – Up Close & Personal details

Includes

  • U.S. Department of the Treasury authorization under a “General Support for the Cuban People License”
  • Accommodations in Cuba in a Casa Particular (Upscale Private Homes-see images on our website)
  • Round trip transfers from the airport to your Casa Particular
  • Full support for the Cuban People Cultural Exchange Program
  • Fresh Bottled Water while touring
  • All entrance fees for scheduled activities and events
  • 11 included meals consisting of: Breakfast daily, 4 lunches and 2 dinners with a cocktail and wine
  • Professional English-speaking Cuban Guide

Excludes

      Round trip airfare to Cuba, Visa for Cuba ($55 per person), meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary, porterage, tips and other items of a purely personal nature

Notes

    *From Price is per person based on double occupancy in a Casa Particular (Upscale Private Home)

Departures & Rates

For 5 to 7 people traveling together Prices from $1,479

Please click here to request a quotation for your preferred dates of travel, or contact your Travel Agent