“Take two weeks to travel across Cuba as part of a small group (max 12) and discover the cultural and natural highlights ranging from old town Havana to the Bay of Pigs and Guantanamo Bay.”

Highlights

Old town Havana | Santa Clara | Che Guevara Museum | Camaguey | Santiago | Cienfuegos | Trinidad | Baracoa | Bay of Pigs | Moncada Barracks | Yunke National Park | Optional activities, include: snorkelling, scuba diving, beach bbq's, steam train rides and horse riding |

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09 Dec 2016
US $ 925
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16 Dec 2016
US $ 925
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23 Dec 2016
US $ 1050
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30 Dec 2016
US $ 1050
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06 Jan 2017
US $ 925
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13 Jan 2017
US $ 925
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20 Jan 2017
US $ 990
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27 Jan 2017
US $ 925
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03 Feb 2017
US $ 925
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Full
 
10 Feb 2017
US $ 925
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Full
 
17 Feb 2017
US $ 925
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Full
 
24 Feb 2017
US $ 925
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Full
 
03 Mar 2017
US $ 925
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Full
 
10 Mar 2017
US $ 925
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17 Mar 2017
US $ 925
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24 Mar 2017
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31 Mar 2017
US $ 925
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07 Apr 2017
US $ 925
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14 Apr 2017
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21 Apr 2017
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28 Apr 2017
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05 May 2017
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12 May 2017
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19 May 2017
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26 May 2017
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02 Jun 2017
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09 Jun 2017
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16 Jun 2017
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23 Jun 2017
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30 Jun 2017
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07 Jul 2017
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14 Jul 2017
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21 Jul 2017
US $ 925
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28 Jul 2017
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04 Aug 2017
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11 Aug 2017
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18 Aug 2017
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25 Aug 2017
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01 Sep 2017
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08 Sep 2017
US $ 925
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15 Sep 2017
US $ 925
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22 Sep 2017
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29 Sep 2017
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06 Oct 2017
US $ 925
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13 Oct 2017
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20 Oct 2017
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27 Oct 2017
US $ 925
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03 Nov 2017
US $ 950
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10 Nov 2017
US $ 950
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17 Nov 2017
US $ 950
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24 Nov 2017
US $ 990
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01 Dec 2017
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08 Dec 2017
US $ 990
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15 Dec 2017
US $ 990
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22 Dec 2017
US $ 1050
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29 Dec 2017
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Vouchers
Accepted
Vacation type

Small group cultural tours

Typically you will be sharing your experiences with between 4-20 like minded travelers (depending on the trip, operator and how many others are booked on the trip) and you'll have a group leader with you. Whether you are traveling alone or with friends it's good value, and a great way to meet new people! While itineraries are pre-planned there is some flexibility and you'll have plenty of privacy. This trip will appeal to travelers of all ages who enjoy meeting new people as well as experiencing new cultures.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Cuba cultural tours

Environment

This trip is filled with opportunities to get to know the culture and vibrant society of the intriguing island nation of Cuba. Nearly all of the accommodation is in the homes of Cuban families, where you will get to see how typical Cubans live, observe their way of life, and participate in their culture.

This tour is lead by a local Cuban guide who will give you an insight into the complex Cuban history and society. The guide will demonstrate how this unique country has managed to resist many of the negative impacts of North American culture, influence, and capitalism, and how it has achieved significant social goals, and at the same time, show you the short-comings of the present system.

The maximum group size of this tour is limited to 12 travelers which enables us to more easily interact with the Cubans and to visit their homes and places of work and play, and which minimises our impact on the local culture and society. You will get the chance to visit government run local community projects such as the ‘organoponicos’ (urban based community organic produce gardens), local schools, and ration stores.

All travelers are encouraged to explore with the group and on their own, learn a few words of the ‘Cubanised’ Spanish, and to interact with the locals as much as possible. The local guides are employed to help explain as much as possible about the cultural differences and the historically significant places that we visit and to make your experience in Cuba as enjoyable and as much fun as possible.

Community

We directly run all the on ground services and do not go through a second agent as the majority of tour providers to Cuba do.
We have our own dedicated staff of locals in Havana and regional centres. A network of tour leaders, local guides and local transport providers, plus local office staff. We use local coordinators in regional centres to get the best possible access to services possible and to bring in local expertise.
We stay almost exclusively in are locally run homestays and Cuban run Hotel, not major chains that dominate tourism in Cuba.
We also encourage our groups to eat in small Paladars run by the locals or to eat in homestays with local families.
We ensure that we 'spread the wealth' throughout each town so the benefit is to the community as a whole and not a few individuals. In this we attempt to get as many local providers involved in tour tours as possible, providing a BBQ by the river, or similar activities where the group is mixing with the real locals and not just those in the tourism industry.
We promote best practice in responsible tourism and actively encourage our local suppliers to work with us in this.
All our staff are trained in Responsible Tourism and make this an important part of their tour. We ensure all the activities offered to the travelers take our impact on the local environment into consideration. Similarly we monitor the impact on the local wildlife.
Our commitment to responsible tourism is not limited to our overseas operation and we have measures to ensure our Australian office operates according to our responsible tourism policy.

Reviews of Cuba cultural tours

You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the vacations.

I am reborn! Simply the best vacation I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed on 07 Nov 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


The whole thing was pretty amazing. Constant interest and surprise.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Go with a completely open mind- it's not usually obvious to non-Cubans quite how things work or what they mean. Always have toilet paper with you.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Staying in casa particulares definitely felt that it benefitted local individuals.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Excellent.

Reviewed on 28 Feb 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


All of it. I still can't believe I have been to Cuba and back. I would urge everybody who is thinking of going to Cuba, go and book your vacation now, you will not regret it. We had a fantastic guide and had a lovely time out there.
The weather, food, people, music and art, buildings, parks, everything is beautiful.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


We went on the 1st week in February and the weather was perfect, temperature 20-26 degree C, one or 2 days it was 30degree C.
I was told it can get very hot from April onwards.
Lots of ATM machine to get cash and it all works.
The casa particular accomodation you would expect one or two to be below standard, but on the whole it had very good standard.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Definitely, we went on a local tour out in the countryside with a lovely guide call Oscar in Baracoa. That was an amazing trip, we went to visit the local fruit plantation and sample all the fruits they grow. We packed used clothings, toiletries, pens, shoes in our suitcase for this trip. It was at this point we were able to distribute our stuff to the poor people living here. It was so rewarding to actually taking part in this exercise. Would advice people who would like to donate items to bring children's clothing. We also had a beautiful lunch, local catch fish meal in a small local10 restaurant, the fish was so tasty.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


10
Excellent

Reviewed on 05 Feb 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


We felt very comfortable in all parts of Cuba even at night in the heart of any city.
The huge number of old American cars that are still in use.


2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


If you have to leave the trip early, as we did, be sure to check on your plane reservations. We did not have seats on the plane back to Havana from Baracoa, as we were supposed to, and so spent an entire day getting to another airport.
Our guide - Yima- did however spend a great deal of her time to make sure we got back in time to Havana.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes to the benefit financially to local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Excellent! We really enjoyed staying in peoples homes instead of hotels. The fact that I do not speak Spanish was not a problem.
Strongly recommend this trip. Just be sure of your flight if you have to leave early.

Reviewed on 01 Feb 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


It's difficult to say. Every place has its own charm and character. But as I
love tropical landscapes Baracoa is probably the most memorable place. I highly
recommend Yumuri river tour. Manglito beach with its blue restaurant is not to
be missed. Just wonderful.
I was also overwhelmed by Trinidad - its architecture,energy, music. It's
simply a non-stop party town. The salsa evening in Santiago de Cuba is another memorable moment. Also the sunset on Playa Ancon. And our beach stop near the Bay of Pigs. And ....

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


It's absolutely safe to leave valuables in the homestay for those who plan to
take (a lot of) cash. Using ATMs or banks can be stressful and time consuming.


3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, especially local businesses.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


This tour is well thought through and planned. We saw a lot in 2 weeks. It felt
like 2 months. The tour programme is substantial without being crammed. It also
gives flexibility for those who want to do their own things. The tour leader with his unbeatable patience,calm and humour contributed a great deal to the success of the vacation.
Big thank you to Rayner, the very friendly tour leader trainee. Practising my
salsa steps with him was a real treat.

Reviewed on 02 Jan 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


The homestay accommodations, which allowed us to meet and interact with local Cubans in personal and meaningful ways, was one of the best things about this trip for me. Cubans are so warm and friendly getting to know the people a little bit made this a very special vacation.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Learn a little Spanish before you go. It helps tremendously in meeting and interacting with people and will serve you well when visiting museums and sites of historical interest.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


I could see how staying at the casas particulares as well as eating meals there and in the small family-run restaurants directly benefited local families. And at the same time it helped made the trip special for the guests.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


This is the best trip I've had in years! Our tour leader and bus driver were exceptional, demonstrating daily their desire to ensure that everyone in the group was happy and comfortable. I fell in love with Cuba and the Cubans!

Reviewed on 10 Feb 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


To be honest, the non-organized stuff I did myself, and the group were great.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?




3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


To a degree, but most people we stayed in were probably pretty well off already, and used to tourists.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Good value, but the guide was very disappointing. For convenience, it was well worth it, but to really experience Cuba, I would travel alone.

Reviewed on 18 Feb 2014 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Dancing to a four piece live cuban band in a cafe at lunchtime in Santa Clara. They were outstanding musicians and so inviting and funny. We couldn't help but get up and dance! We attracted quite a crowd on the pavement outside, which is down to Cuban peoples' enthusiasm and friendliness. We also had another wonderful dancing afternoon, one Sunday in Camaguey at the Casa di Trova, all locals, a very good band, a lovely friendly humourous atmosphere, all ages and us two sisters dancing with two very delightful and respectful older gentlemen.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Read up beforehand. Ensure you have top class insurance and tour visa. Take loo roll and antiseptic hand gel as Cuban loos are frightful on the whole!! Staying in casas particulares beats hotels every time and security is good; use a lockable suitcase and lock your room, casas owners won't go into your room as they don't want to risk anything as could lose their licence. Take plenty of loot as debit and credit cards don't generally work. Visa and mastercard cards issued thro british banks don't work. Take gifts, nail varnish, paracetamol, soap, soap, soap, any clothes you can leave there, all these are SO appreciated! Go on an organised small group tour, you just can't do it yourself until you have visited the country several times.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Absolutely, we stayed in casas particulares like english b&b but could provide evening meals if required. Evening meals were very good homecooking. We felt the casas gave a fantastically interesting dimension to our vacation as we could interact with the whole family. Cubans are very, very friendly and demonstrative. Nothing is too much trouble.
Yes because we were in a small (group of 12) tour bus, and had a local guide who could help us.
River swimming in Baracoa in a reserve was marvellous, our guide pointing out that we must not take souvenirs.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Amazing, fun, varied, good overall tour, we didn't want to come home. Five Star

Reviewed on 10 Jan 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Xmas eve fireworks in Remedios.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Ensure that accommodation is booked as we were told our accommodation at Remedios was not booked so we stayed in Santa Clara; also we had no dinner reservations which is very frustrating given it was Xmas eve and extremely busy in the square.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


We stayed at casas and ate in private restaurants.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


I got to experience the Xmas eve festivities with locals and had New Years Eve dinner in the old square made the trip special versus if I went during other times of the year.

Reviewed on 31 Mar 2010 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


So much stuff to mention, but I enjoyed Trinidad and Baracoa the best - both had great atmosphere with plenty to explore during the day plus good nightlife with local bars and shows with live music everywhere. You really felt that you were part of the place rather than observing it.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Pack the bare minimum, learn Salsa before you go!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Definitely, the majority of accommodation was with local families and our environmental footprint seemed quite low.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Fabulous vacation, without a doubt this is the way to see the real Cuba - I had 3 days at an all-inclusive beach resort afterwards to chill out and really regret it as it was nothing like the real Cuba I experienced in the previous 2 weeks.

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