fbpx A Taste of Cuba | Defence Escapes
Grand American Adventures
Havana to Havana
8 days
From $2,679
Tour code: AUW

Highlights

  • Atmospheric Havana with its colonial charm
  • Visit colourful Trinidad's maze of cobblestone streets
  • Visit the Mausoleum of Che Guevara
  • Locally led walk in Topes de Collantes National Park
  • Mojito cocktail class and salsa dancing with the locals
  • Visit to a cigar factory in Pinar del Rio
  • Visit the site of the famous US invasion at the Bay of Pigs
  • Walking tour of Old Havana's plazas
  • Swimming in Caribbean waters
  • Walk through tobacco plantations in Vinales Valley
  • Cuban tourist card (UK residents only)

A slow paced and colourful country with salsa music pulsating through its veins, this is Cuba. Admire Havana's colourful and architecturally rich history as you explore a city where the old and new converge. Travel deep into the Cuban countryside to visit lush landscapes, rolling tobacco plantations and world heritage sites on your voyage of discovery. Swim in the Caribbean Sea, sip cocktails, savour a cigar and dance with the locals to the beats of salsa music on this one of a kind tropical island.

What's included?

Services of a professional bilingual tour leader

Transport

All transportation by private vehicle

Accommodation

Budget lodging (4 nights), hotel (3 nights)

Itinerary

Day 1
Havana
Welcome to the capital of Cuba where you'll get to experience colonial architecture, classic cars and grand plazas. No visit to Havana is complete without soaking up the sights within the UNESCO World Heritage listed old town, which still retains the architecture that was present during the 16th and 17th centuries. Undeniable colonial highlights include the fortifications of Castillo del Morro, La Cabana and San Salvador de la Punta, which were all originally constructed to protect Havana from invaders attacking from the sea. Further Spanish and religious importance can be found within the Cathedral de San Cristobal and the Church of San Francisco de Asis, both of which have played their part in cementing Havana's heritage firmly on the cultural map. You will meet your tour leader and fellow travelling companions the following morning, please see the noticeboard in reception for the meeting time.

Meals: Meals paid locally

Day 2
Havana - Vinales
Bid Havana adios for now as you head for the amazing limestone rock formations of Vinales Valley. This is your first chance to discover life outside of the city as well as learning more about Cuba's most famous export on a tour of a tobacco plantation. Visit a cigar factory in Pinar del Rio and pick up some local artisan souvenirs before heading out for a sunset meal.

Meals: Breakfast and lunch included

Day 3
Cienfuegos
Swim in crystal clear waters en route to the Bay of Pigs where you can find out more about Cuba's passionate and revolutionary heritage. Your next stop is the beautiful coastal city of Cienfuegos. The UNESCO World Heritage listing for Cienfuegos is entirely justified as not only is the city blessed with some exceptionally well-preserved colonial architecture but it's also revered as being one of the best examples of 19th century Spanish urban planning. The Arco de Triunfo, the Cathedral de la Purisma Concepcion and the Palacio de Valle are all well worth a visit. If you prefer to take it easy, soak up the sun in one of the many of parks, beaches and botanical gardens.

Meals: Breakfast included

Day 4
Trinidad
Today, your journey takes you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Trinidad, where you'll stroll cobbled streets, visit museums and listen out for the click-clack of hooves signalling yet another horse-drawn cart. This city is considered the best-preserved example of a colonial town within the whole of Cuba and there's no better way to explore than with a local for a sense of the reality of living in Trinidad. You'll start with a walking tour led by a local, followed by a visit to the Sandander family's artisan pottery workshop, then dinner at a private paladar where muscians will perform classic trova music. Trova is unique to Cuba and tonight we recommend you bring your dancing shoes to make the most of the live music.

Meals: Breakfast and dinner included

Day 5
Trinidad
Today head out to the Escambray Mountains to explore striking waterfalls and bountiful nature in Collantes National Park. Here, you will be taken on a locally guided short hike to scenic viewpoints, learning about the parks ecology along the way. The experience will be followed by an authenic Cuban lunch. Fresh from the trails, head back into Trinidad for a mojito making and salsa lesson! Put your moves to good use afterwards at the town's 'Casa de la Trova' live music venue. Mingle with the locals and improve on your technique.

Optional activities:

  • Catamaran trip (including lunch) CUC65-75
  • Horse Riding CUC30 (minimum two people)

Meals: Breakfast and lunch included

Day 6
Santa Clara - Havana
Viva la Revolucion! This won't be the first or the last time that you'll hear about Che Guevara. As you leave Trinidad and travel to Santa Clara you'll visit the Che Guevara Museum and Mausoleum to learn more about Cuba's famous revolutionary icon. There's no better place to find out more about Che Guevara than in Santa Clara, and no matter what you may think of his politics it's impossible to deny that this is one of history's most enigmatic revolutionary heroes. It is a long transfer day today, you'll be provided with packed lunches from the hotel to enjoy on your journey.

Optional activities:

  • Tropicana Nightclub CUC75-95
  • El Cubano Experience CUC45
  • Parisien Nightclub CUC45

Meals: Breakfastlunch and dinner included

Day 7
Havana
Rediscover some old haunts and explore some new ones on a walking tour of the city as you return to Havana. Cuba's capital and the largest city in the Caribbean. Beginning in Old Havana, you will be charmed by this 'living museum' filled with cathedrals, monuments and palaces. The eclectic mix of minimal war damage, post-revolution restoration work of the millions of dollors invested since it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1982 makes this a pretty special place to visit.Continue your tour by seeing the city how many locals do: from a classic car. Travel in one of the vibrant vintage cars, manufactured in the 50s, through the distinctive neighbourhoods, for a truly unique perspective of this incredible city.

Meals: Breakfast and lunch included

Day 8
Havana
Your tour ends in the morning after breakfast. Be sure to get in some last-minute sightseeing, before bidding farewell to Cuba and your newfound friends.

Meals: Breakfast included

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