2019 - Sights & Sounds of Cuba - (Havana-Havana Program/Cienfuegos to Havana Cruise)
Experience a harmonious balance between conventional cruising and private yachting, along with an exciting voyage of discovery, unraveling the wonders of the Cuba awaiting to be discovered. Each day you will discover a new port of call, a hidden cove with crystal blue waters to cool you, a glimpse of ancient history to amaze you and rich cultural diversity to intrigue you. The colonial cities of Cienfuegos and Trinidad, the verdant landscapes of Vinales / Pinar del Rio and the crystal clear seas and amazing underwater life in Maria La Gorda. DISCLAIMER: Due to restrictions of U.S. law, Group IST in New York is authorized to offer educational travel programs in Cuba to U.S. citizens and permanent residents. Some of that travel within Cuba will be via ship. Interested parties should contact Group IST directly if interested in learning more about its educational programs in Cuba.
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1: Friday - Cienfuegos
Meeting at 9 am at the Melia Cohiba Havana for your 4 and a ½ hour bus transfer with fellow passengers to Cienfuegos where you will embark your ship. After checking in you will have the opportunity to take a 3 hour Optional Cienfuegos city tour and discover the only city in Cuba founded by French settlers, also known as the Pearl of the South. In 2005 it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. Our walking tour will take us to a graphic arts workshop and to Parque Marti in the centre to see some outstanding examples of its architecture representing the new ideas of modernity and urban planning as developed in Latin America from the 19th Century. Dinner on board and overnight at sea to Casilda/ Trinidad.
Day 2: Saturday - Casilda for Trinidad
Disembark for our Trinidad Optional excursion. A meticulously well-preserved Spanish colonial city, with its rich architecture, cobblestone streets, palaces and plazas, it is sometimes referred to as the 'Museum City of Cuba." This morning we will walk through the town and then meet with a representative of the Office of the City Historian, interacting with residents along the way. We will attend a presentation and visit a scale model of the city. Stop at the Romantic Museum located in the old palace of the Count Brunet, with samples of furniture and decorative arts, or the Palacio Cantero Museum. Visit the studio of Lazaro, a very unique woodcarver and take part in a sightseeing tour of this UNESCO World Heritage site. Lunch at a typical Cuban Restaurant, or similar followed by leisure time before returning to the Voyager for embarkation. Dinner on board. Overnight at sea to Isla de la Juventud.
DAY 3: Sunday - Day at Sea/ Isla de la Juventud
Today we will spend the majority of the day at sea, with a late afternoon arrival in Bay of Singuanea, where we will spend the night.
Day 4: Monday - Juventud Island
Until 1977, the island was called the Isle of Pines. In 1978 Fidel Castro turned the island into one grand Communist school for students from around the world and thus the Island of Youth. Your Optional Juventud excursionstarts Disembark on the beach where you will board the bus for the short drive, enjoying panoramic sightseeing until you reach the Presidio Modelo, an abandoned panopticon prison where both Fidel and Raul Castro were imprisoned from 1953-1955. Enjoy lunch in an authentic local restaurant before visiting an art school and the maternity ward of a local hospital. There will be some free time for independent exploration and enjoyment around Nueva Gerona's grand boulevard before returning to embark the ship for an overnight sailing to Maria La Gorda.
DAY 5: Tuesday - Maria La Gorda
After breakfast, we disembark in Maria La Gorda for our optional excursion where we will visit the local school to meet the Cuban children and their teachers, and discuss the differences and levels of the Cuban and American educational systems, particularly in the rural areas of the country. Visit the headquarters of Guanahacabibes National Park, one of the country's largest nature reserves on the westernmost tip of the island. The peninsula is one of the last refuges of aboriginals fleeing from the Spanish conquistadors and also holds some 140 archeological sites linked to life of aboriginals known as Guanahatabeyes. Time-permitting, we will venture into the park to meet with the naturalists and locals, followed by free time for swimming and snorkelling before embarking the Voyager. Dinner and overnight on board as we sail to Havana.
Day 6: Wednesday - Havana
After breakfast, we will start our Optional walking excursion in Old Havana or Havana Vieja and Centro Havana. Founded in 1519 by the Spanish, Havana became one of the most important ship building centers in the Caribbean, around which a sprawling metropolis grew. Now numbering a population of 2 million, it is a mixture of beautiful old baroque and neo-classical monuments, arcades and private balconies. Old Havana is considered one of the most impressive historical city centers in the Caribbean and in the Americas. For an enhanced sightseeing experience, flag down a uniquely decorated local "bicitaxi," or bicycle taxi. We will stop at a local restaurant for lunch, followed by a scenic drive in vintage American cars to Finca Vigia, beloved home of Ernest Hemingway where he lived for 21 years and wrote For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea. Upon our return from Finca Vigia, enjoy some free time before we make our way to Café El Mercurio for dinner, and then to the Café Taberna to experience the wonderful salsa music of the Buena Vista Social Club style performance. Overnight in Sierra Maestra Port- Old Havana.
Day 7: Thursday - Havana
Disembark in the early morning for an optional excursion to Fusterlandia, the studio of artist Jose Rodriguez Fuster. The brightly colored mermaids, roofs, walls, benches, and doorways were greatly inspired by Gaudi in Barcelona and Brancusi in Rome, but most of all by Picasso and Dubuffet. Be immersed in the industries of Cuba, either visiting a cigar factory or participating in a rum tasting. Enjoy lunch at La Barraca Restaurant, located in Hotel Nacional de Cuba, which specializes in Cuban cuisine and offers breathtaking views of the Bay of Havana. Remain at the hotel for an engrossing lecture with well-known architect Pedro Vasquez, followed by time at leisure. Return to the Voyager for special Captain's Farewell Dinner and overnight on board in Sierra Maestra Port - Old Havana.
Day 8: Friday - Havana
Disembarkation at 9 am after breakfast.
Call (407) 282-2111 for more information or to book today! Mention code 14230351
- Cruise Line
- Variety Cruises
- Offer valid through 3/31/2019
- 8 Days
- Cruise Ship
- M/Y Variety Voyager
Click for more information on this ship.
|Day 3||Isla de la Juventud|
|Day 4||Juventud Island|
|Day 5||Maria la Gorda|
- * Cruise Fares
All fares are quoted in US Dollars or Euro and are per person based on double occupancy. US $ cruise fares apply for US and Canadian passport holders and Euro rates apply for all other nationalities.
Shipboard accommodations, ocean transportation all meals and on board entertainment as specified in the cruise program selected.
Fares do not Include:
Port charges, fuel surcharge, travel insurance, transfers, optional air/sea or land programs (unless noted), shore excursions, airport facility charges, taxes/fees, nor do they include items of a personal nature such as alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, gratuities, gift shop purchases, medical services, phone calls, etc. All onboard charges are in Euros.
Port Charges, Fuel Surcharge and Airport Taxes
Port charges and fuel surcharge are in addition to the cruise fares. Payment for port charges must be made at the time the final payment is made.