Cuba: The People & Culture - 2018

Cienfuegos • Trinidad • Bay of Pigs • Havana
  • TOUR THE CITY OF HAVANA IN A VINTAGE AMERICAN CAR
  • TOUR OLD HAVANA TO SEE THE FADED GLORY OF ITS SPANISH-COLONIAL ARCHITECTURE, AND BROWSE THE ARTS AND CRAFTS MARKET
  • ADMIRE TRINIDAD'S WELL-PRESERVED 16TH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE ON A WALKING TOUR
  • TOUR THE HISTORIC PORT CITY OF CIENFUEGOS AND SEE ITS FRENCH-INFLUENCED PALACES AND MANSIONS
DATES & PRICES
Moderate Deluxe
Single Supplement: Call
Base prices are factored using double-occupancy rooms; supplemental fees may apply for those traveling independently.
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Itinerary at a Glance

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DAY 1:

Depart Miami / Arrive Cienfuegos, Cuba

Today you'll depart from Miami to the historic port city of Cienfuegos, Cuba’s “Pearl of the South,” where we’ll begin our explorations. Cienfuegos soothes the eye with harmonious architecture and Spanish-colonial urban planning. Enjoy a Welcome Dinner at the hotel this evening.

Included Meals:

Dinner

DAY 2:

Cienfuegos

Active Feature: You’ll begin with a walking tour of the graceful Old Town, which has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its French neoclassical architecture and 19th-century city planning. During your visit, you’ll see the Tomás Terry Theatre, the Government House, and the Cathedral de la Purísima Conceptión. Cultural Discoveries: After lunch at a local restaurant, visit the lush Cienfuegos Botanical Garden and enjoy a discussion about its unique species. An American sugar planter developed the garden with Harvard University botanists in the 1800s to propagate more productive sugar cane. The university maintained it as a field laboratory until the Cuban revolution in 1959. Afterwards, get a taste of Cuba's strong musical heritage at a performance by the world-famous Cienfuegos Choir. Tonight, enjoy dinner on your own.

Included Meals:

Breakfast  & Lunch

DAY 3:

Cienfuegos (Trinidad)

Ride through fields of sugar cane, Cuba’s most important agricultural product, en route to the colonial city of Trinidad. The city and the nearby Valley de los Ingenios – Valley of the Sugar Mills – were named a UNESCO World Heritage Site as a testament to the economic power of Cuba’s sugar industry in the 18th and 19th centuries. Active Feature: A guided walk reveals the historic city center around Trinidad’s Plaza Mayor, with its wealth of buildings clearly reflecting their Spanish heritage. Cultural Discovery and Unforgettable Moment: Get a feel for Trinidad’s thriving art scene when you visit local artists and craftspeople in their studios and workshops. After lunch at a local restaurant, we’ll visit the Valley de los Ingenios, where as many as 11,000 slaves once grew and harvested the cane to feed the valley’s 50 sugar mills.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 4:

Cienfuegos / Havana

Our route to Havana today takes us by the Bay of Pigs, where the Cuban government maintains a memorial and museum at the spot where forces under Fidel Castro successfully repelled the 1961 invasion by Cuban exiles trained and financed by the CIA. Cultural Discovery and Unforgettable Moment: In Papite, attend a performance by talented students of the Korimaccao Community project. When you arrive in Havana, you’ll check into the famed Hotel Nacional de Cuba, once the most glamorous destination in the Caribbean. Enjoy dinner this evening at a family-run paladar restaurant.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 5:

Havana

Today we start at Morro Castle, the great harborside fortress, where you’ll enjoy the best panoramic views of this iconic city. Vantage Cares: We'll then visit the Sister Teresa Vaz center, our Vantage Cares site in Cuba. The center's dedicated staff provides day care and other programs and services to the underserved youth of Havana. In addition to supporting the day care center, Vantage provides uniforms for the center's youth soccer program. Active Feature: Afterwards, continue on a guided walking tour of Old Havana, the historic center of Cuba’s capital city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the four main plazas of Old Havana, the basilica of San Francisco de Assisi, the beautiful Havana Cathedral, and El Templete, a Greco-Roman monument marking the spot where Havana’s first Catholic Mass was celebrated in 1599. Cultural Discovery: Continuing on, we visit the studio of a local silk screener and eat lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards, continue your highlights tour to New Havana, including the vast Plaza de la Revolución, where Fidel would address millions of Cubans and where Pope Francis said Mass in 2015.

Included Meals:

Breakfast  & Lunch

DAY 6:

Havana

Start your day with a visit to visit Finca Vigía, the beloved home where “Papa” Hemingway lived for 21 years and worked on “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and “The Old Man and the Sea.” The house is maintained as a museum and remains almost exactly as Hemingway left it when he last visited in 1960. Cultural Discovery: Then, you’ll see another side of Cuba’s lively dance culture when you watch a performance by Havana Compass Dance. Following lunch in a local restaurant, you will have the opportunity to visit an arts and crafts market. Your evening is at leisure, with dinner on your own.

Included Meals:

Breakfast  & Lunch

DAY 7:

Havana

Cultural Discovery: Stroll through Calle Hammel, an alleyway that has been transformed into a living work of Afro-Cuban art, with vivid murals covering entire buildings and the streetscape transformed by colorful sculptures and mosaics. You'll attend a dance performance at a Santeria chapel, the Afro-Caribbean religion that mingles Yoruba beliefs from Africa with Roman Catholic practices. Continue your artistic explorations with a guided visit to the National Museum of Fine Arts, which holds Cuban art spanning from colonial times to the present day. The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore, or take the opportunity to relax before this evening's events. 

Unforgettable Moment: Tonight, prepare for a Farewell Dinner at a Havana restaurant that begins with a ride in a vintage American car. Before the 1962 embargo, Chevrolets, Fords, Dodges, and other classics from the 1950s were prevalent on the island nation. Ingenious Cuban mechanics have kept thousands of these "Yank tanks” in meticulous running order in the decades since. Today, they are one of the most distinctive sights on a vibrant island that often seems frozen in time. But as you raise a glass in farewell to our fellow travelers and the Cuban people, you can count yourself lucky to have visited this island nation people before it changes forever.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 8:

Havana / Return home

After breakfast, we transfer to the airport for our flight home.

Included Meals:

Breakfast

Important Notice: The above day-by-day itineraries are preliminary and therefore subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Vantage Adventure Leader or regional expert.

Please Note: The hotels listed are preliminary and subject to change. Although we contract our hotels a year in advance, unforeseen situations do occasionally occur. Should it be necessary to change a hotel, one of equal quality and value will be substituted. You will receive verified hotel information with your Travel Documents. That hotel rating is based on the hotel and a leading travel industry authority on hotels throughout the world.

Contact Vantage

CALL 1-800-848-5773

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Vantage Tauck Tours Vantage Advantage
Journey Cuba: The People & Culture Cuba: Connecting With People & Culture [OFFER]
Price including airfare between Miami & Cuba* $3,899 $6,390 Save $2,782 per couple!
Trip Length 8 7 days Better pacing plus enjoy our Vantage Cares charitable initiatives!
Per Diem $487 $912 Save up to $850 per couple per day!
Small Group travel Yes! No more than 24 travelers per departure! Group size of up to 30 travelers Smaller group size!
Sightseeing Full program of People-to-People interactions, including dance, art, and music performances and exhibitions! Plus, Vantage Cares charitable initiatives Full program of People-to-People interactions with art, music, and dance programs Learn about Cuba through daily interactions with the local people including artists, students, musicians and visits to workshops, choir performances a daycare center & much more
Preferred Traveler Rewards 5% Vantage Travel Reward to use towards your next Vantage journey $100 per person BEST REWARDS PROGRAM IN TRAVEL!
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*Prices are subject to change and based on comparable departure months.
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