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12 days

Highlights of Cuba

Go on a fantastic tour of Cuba, offering fascinating history, beautiful scenery, colourful colonial towns and an encounter with happy Cubans, rum, salsa and cigars.

Highlights of Cuba Highlights of Cuba
12 days

Highlights of Cuba

Go on a fantastic tour of Cuba, offering fascinating history, beautiful scenery, colourful colonial towns and an encounter with happy Cubans, rum, salsa and cigars.

Choose this tour because…

Cuba exudes history, revolution, music and dance, and this tour lets you experience the absolute highlights of the country. The tour starts in Havana, where beautiful colonial buildings, charming American cars, smiles and salsa rhythms wish you welcome.
From the colourful capital, the tour proceeds to the countryside and the lush, idyllic Viñales Valley, where, among other things, they grow tobacco plants that grow to become some of the world’s very finest cigars.
The tour continues through the charming Cienfuegos, also known as the Pearl of the South, to Trinidad. You can’t help but love Trinidad! The cobblestone streets, vibrantly colourful houses and sweet live music soothes both body and soul.

From Trinidad, the tour goes back to Havana, with a stop in Santa Clara, where you can visit Che Guevara’s grave and mausoleum.

You have the option of extending the tour with a beach holiday at one of Cuba’s stunning beaches.

What is included in the price?
This package includes the following
  • Return flight from the UK to Havana (enquire regarding direct flights)
  • Transfers to and from the airport in Havana
  • Transfers to and from the bus stations
  • Bus: Havana – Viñales – Cienfuegos – Trinidad – Santa Clara – Havana
  • 10 nights at Casa Particulares incl. breakfast
  • 2 x lunch (day 4+10)
  • 3 x dinner (day 4+6+7)
  • Cuban tourist visa
  • Individual tour; however, all excursions are done in small, international groups with local, English-speaking guides.
  • 24-hour manned emergency telephone throughout the tour
  • ATOL certificate included
  • Departure guarantee – the tour goes ahead regardless of the number of participant
  • Daily departure is an option

Comprehensive package of excursions:

  • City tour in Havana’s old quarter
  • Excursion to the Viñales Valley, including a visit to a tobacco plantation and a limestone cave
  • City tour of Trinidad
  • City tour in Santa Clara, including a visit to the Che Guevara museum and mausoleum
  • Entry to all mentioned attractions

 

Interested in changing your accommodation from a casa particular to a hotel or changing your transport from bus to private transport? Then please contact us to find out how much extra it will cost.

You have the option of extending the tour with a beach holiday at one of Cuba’s stunning beaches.

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Detailed Itinerary
Day 1: Departure from the UK and arrival in Havana

Departure from the UK and arrival at the Havana airport with connecting flights on the way. Here you meet with our partner in Cuba, who is standing ready with a sign with your name on it. A driver takes you to your accommodations in Havana. The trip takes approx. 30 min. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

Day 2: City tour in Havana

After breakfast, you take a city tour of Havana’s old quarter, which is on UNESCO’s list of sites worthy of preservation. Put on your good walking shoes, and let the guide take you through Havana’s cobblestone streets to impressive sites with beautiful old colonial buildings. You experience the contrast between the newly-renovated and maintained streets and buildings, and the more dilapidated areas, that makes Havana so unique. Among the tour’s highlights is a visit to the oldest part of the city, Plaza de las Armas, where the city museum and the governor’s palace are located. Plaza de San Francisco Asis at the port of Havana, Plaza Vieja and Plaza de la Catedral with its beautiful cathedral.

You have the afternoon and evening to yourself.

Day 3: Havana on your own
Day 4: Havana – Viñales Valley

Today you leave Havana and set a course for the Viñales Valley, where stunning nature experiences await. On the way, you stop at a small tobacco plantation and tobacco factory, where you gain an exciting insight into the process of creating their fine cigars. Cuba is famous around the world for its fine cigars, and the Viñales area is renowned for having some of the best tobacco plantations in the country. This is where the tobacco for the famous Cohiba and Montecristo brands of cigars comes from.

Please note: The cigar factories in Cuba stipulate that you must be at least 18 to enter and that the cigar factory is closed during the weekend.

The last road section into the Viñales Valley goes along a winding road. A stop is made at the lookout point at Hotel Jazmines. Here you get a panoramic view of this fairy-tale valley, with its iconic limestone cliffs, also known as “mogotes”, shooting straight up from the lush fields. This is a view that really takes your breath away.

Just outside Viñales you see a gigantic mural, Mural de la prehistoria, which symbolizes the evolution of mankind. It was made by Leovigildo González, a local artist, and the Cuban people take great pride in it.
The last experience of today’s trip is the spectacular limestone cave, Cueva del Indio, which was inhabited by indigenous people in the past. You will be walking and taking a boat through this impressive cave.

The tour includes lunch at a traditional Cuban restaurant, before you are taken back to your accommodations in Viñales.

The rest of the day is your own. Dinner is included this day at your casa particular. Look forward to a dinner made from delicious organic ingredients from the region.

Day 5: Viñales on your own
Day 6: Viñales - Cienfuegos

You are picked up early in the morning and driven to the bus station, from which the bus to Cienfuegos departs. This is an approximately 8-hour trip, so lean back in the soft seats and enjoy the lush Cuban landscape as it zips by. On the highways of Cuba, you don’t just encounter other cars and buses. Here there are pedestrians, cyclists, ox carts and horse carriages in surprising harmony with one another. And yes, you can certainly lose your mind a little over the gorgeous old American cars, which are so iconic to the Cuban street view.

In the afternoon, you reach Cienfuegos, which is also known as the “Pearl of the South”. You are picked up at the bus station and driven to your accommodations. The rest of the day is your own. Dinner is included this evening at your casa particular.

Day 7: Cienfuegos – Trinidad

Cienfuegos was founded in 1819 by a group of French immigrants from the USA. The city entered the global map in 1957, when a group of young people with Fidel Castro’s guerrilla took over its military base. This was a short-lived victory, and the uprising was quickly defeated by Batista.

Today Cienfuegos is a pleasant town with very well-preserved buildings, and is for this reason included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Take a walk down to Parque Marti, the city’s central square. Here you can find locations including the well-preserved “Tomas Terry” theatre from 1890, and the spectacular mayor’s office.

You can also walk along the boardwalk to Punta Gorda, where you can find some of the most beautiful buildings in the city. Enjoy lunch or a drink at Palacio de Valle, which is a stunningly beautiful building that looks as if it came from an Arabian fairy-tale.

You have the morning to explore the city on your own. You can also choose to purchase a city tour.

In the afternoon, the tour goes on to Trinidad. The trip takes about an hour and a half. On arrival, you are picked up and driven to your accommodations, where your host family is ready with a delightful dinner for you.

Day 8: City tour of Trinidad

Today, you are going on a guided city tour of Trinidad’s beautiful old quarter. Get your good walking shoes on, as Trinidad’s charming topped cobblestone streets are very uneven.

You visit locations including the picturesque square, Plaza Mayor and the city’s cathedral, “Iglesia Parroquial de la Santisima Trinidad”, one of the biggest churches in Cuba. Your guide tells you about the city’s exciting history and architecture on the way. The tour naturally also includes a drink at one of the lovely local bars.

The rest of the afternoon and evening is at your leisure. We recommend that you go to town in the evening and enjoy the atmosphere. At Plaza Mayor, you can find the popular dancing spot “Casa de la Musica”, and just 100 metres away is another dancing spot, “Casa de la Trova”, which always features live music too. If you can’t dance yourself, you have every opportunity to learn it here. Of course, you can also simply enjoy the sight of the happy, dancing crowds around you.

Day 9: Trinidad on your own
Day 10: Trinidad – Santa Clara - Havana

Today, you will leave Trinidad early in the morning and head for Santa Clara, where Che Guevara is buried. Wherever you are in Cuba, you will find reminders of the revolution in the form of large signs with slogans as well as pictures of Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. On Revolution Square in Santa Clara, you will see the great bronze statue of Che Guevara bearing his famous words “Hasta la victoria siempre”. Behind the statue is his mausoleum and an exciting museum about his life.

Please note: Che Guevara’s mausoleum and museum is closed on Mondays and Cuban public holidays.

You also visit Santa Clara’s central park, “Leoncio Vidal Park”, and the Train Museum, which tells the story of how Che Guevara and his men derailed a highly-guarded train filled with ammunition in 1958. A major victory in the struggle to take Santa Clara.

After lunch (included), you have time on your own in Santa Clara before the bus leaves for Havana late afternoon. You arrive in Havana in the evening.

The trip from Trinidad to Santa Clara takes approx. 3 hours, and the trip from Santa Clara to Havana takes approx. 4 hours.

Day 11: Departure day

Today the tour takes you back to the UK. You are picked up at your accommodations and driven to the airport.

Day 12: Arrival back home

You arrive in the UK after an exciting tour of Cuba.

Extend your tour

Beach holiday extension to Varadero, 3 nights

Price:
Per person in a double room: + £510
Per child u/12 years: + £383
Single room surcharge: + £100

Varadero is located on the north coast of Cuba, around a 2½-hour drive from Havana. It is Cuba’s largest and most popular beach area – and for good reason. The 20-km long isthmus welcomes you with white sand, azure water and swaying palms.

In Varadero, you’ll find plenty of resorts, restaurants, souvenir shops and tour operators, who organise trips both above and below the water. You can also play golf out here.

Relax in the picturesque setting by the water and indulge yourself at the all-inclusive hotel, which offers delicious food and a wide range of entertainment and activities.

Beach holiday extension to Jibacoa, 3 nights

Price:
Per person in a double room: + £400
Single room surcharge: + £110

Situated on the scenic stretch of coast between Havana and Varadero is Jibacoa, a little gem surrounded by beautiful nature. Round off your holiday here in tranquil surroundings by the beautiful sandy beach, Arroyo Bermejo.

Enjoy the hotel’s many facilities and fabulous restaurants, and have a refreshing dip in the large pool or in the crystal clear sea. Just metres from the coast is a small reef where you can snorkel and experience the colourful life under the sea.
If you feel the need to be active, you can play tennis, volleyball and go on short walks in the lush hills behind the hotel.
The sunset can be enjoyed with a cool mojito in your hand from one of the hotel’s all-inclusive bars.

Please note that the hotel is for guests aged 16+.

Single room supplement £480
Discounts are available for groups of 4 or more people
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