Airport pick-up in Havana on Day 1 and transfer to your casa particular. On Day 2 take a cultural walking tour of Havana with a local guide, then transfer to Cienfuegos on Day 3 and take an enjoyable morning walk on Day 4. Continue your adventure to Trinidad on Day 5 and take a fun salsa lesson with a local teacher, then embark on a horseback adventure to Cubanito Natural Park, where you can swim through a waterfall on Day 6. Enjoy a free morning in Trinidad, then travel to Santa Clara in the afternoon of Day 7 where you will take a half-day walking tour on Day 8. Take a bus to Varadero on Day 9 and lay back and relax on pristine white-sand beaches on Day 10. Return to Havana on Day 11 in time to take a fun “night out” tour this evening. Say goodbye to the beautiful country of Cuba as your trip comes to an end on Day 12 with a Havana airport drop-off.
Day by Day Itinerary:
Day 1: Havana Airport Pick-up
You will be picked up from the Havana airport upon arrival and taken to your casa particular for the night.
Day 2: Local Havana Walking Tour (B)
Begin your authentic cultural experience in Havana, famous for its wonderful architecture, by going on an exciting tours with a fun local guide to get to see the real Cuba. Learn how to use the local peso, see the city's unknown gems and hop into local shared taxis and unusual forms of local transportation. Stop at a local shop for a coffee, snack or cold beer with your guide to immerse yourself in parts of Havana rarely seen by tourists. Overnight in Havana.
Day 3: Bus Havana to Cienfuegos (B)
Today, you will travel to the French founded city of Cienfuegos by bus, the so-called Perla del Sur (Pearl of the South), a town that has been seducing travellers from around the island with its elegance, enlightened French touch and Caribbean spirit. On arrival, check-in into your casa particular and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure discovering this beautiful city on your own. Overnight in Cienfuegos.
Day 4: Cienfuegos Walking Tour (B)
Enjoy a morning walking tour around this charming waterfront city, with its wide Parisian-style boulevard and elegant colonnades. Visit the “The Pearl of the South” and birthplace of Benny More, see Jose Marti Plaza, Tomas Terry Theater and the Valle Palace and to learn more about this musical city from your bilingual guide. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight in Cienfuegos.
Day 5: Bus Cienfuegos to Trinidad & Salsa Lesson (B)
After breakfast, enjoy a last stroll around the city before catching a short ride by bus to the beautiful colonial town of Trinidad, a perfectly preserved Spanish colonial settlement where time stopped back in 1850. After checking-in to your new casa particular, take advantage of a salsa lesson with a local instructor! Afterwards, wander around and see the numerous churches and beautiful colonial buildings of Trinidad. Overnight in Trinidad.
Day 6: Cubanito Natural Park & Waterfalls Excursion (B)
Depart your casa particular at 9am and begin your full day adventure with 1-2 hour horseback ride. (You may opt for biking, walking or taxi instead of horseback if you’d prefer--no extra charge. All options are accompanied by a guide.) Ride through the ancient streets of Trinidad and into the rolling countryside, arriving at Cubanito Natural Park. Enjoy a 30 minute hike along the scenic river with lots of opportunities for spotting birds and flora along the way. Arrive at the grotto and waterfall, where you can jump into the fresh clean waters of a deep pool surrounded by high rock walls. Swim through the waterfall and into the cave behind for a magical experience. After some chill time and a picnic or snack lunch (not included) we will walk back to the horses for the ride back to your casa particular, arriving around 3pm.
NOTE: Please remember to bring your swimsuit!!
Day 7: Bus Trinidad to Santa Clara (B)
This morning, enjoy free time chilling ot to visit the lovely Valle de los Ingenios (Valley of Sugar Mills) and Playa Ancón, where you can enjoy long stretches of unspoiled, white sand beaches. Scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming in waterfalls and horse-riding are some of the optional activities (not included) that you can do here. At around 15:00, jump on a bus to Santa Clara. On arrival check-in to your casa particular and overnight.
Day 8: Santa Clara Half Day Walking Tour (B)
Today, take a half-day walking tour of Santa Clara to visit the legendary Che Guevara’s Mausoleum and other points of interest with a local guide. Overnight in Santa Clara.
Day 9: Bus Santa Clara to Varadero (B)
Today you will take a bus from Santa Clara to Varadero, a charming beach town on the Atlantic. Upon arrival please make your own way to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at your leisure to relax, explore, and get settled in. Overnight in Varadero.
Day 10: Varadero Free Day
Enjoy a full free day to swim and soak up some sun at the beach, explore the town, and dig into some traditional Cuban food. Overnight in Varadero.
Day 11: Shuttle Varadero to Havana & Havana 'By Night' Tour
Today you will be picked up at your accommodation and transfer back to Havana. After checking in to your casa particular, enjoy one last free day in the vibrant Havana to by your last presents and souvenirs. Then, get ready for a fun night out, dancing salsa and partying on the Havana 'By Night' Tour! After a walk along the Malecon to get in the mood, some street music and dancing, head indoors to one of the great Salsa Bars and Music clubs with Cuban guides as your chaperones. Casa de la Musica, Jazz Café and the famous after hours clubs in Vedado depending on your guide, and where the night takes you! Overnight in Havana.
(Please bring an extra 15CUC per person for cover fees, taxis and drinks on the Havana Night Out Tour)
Day 12: Havana Airport Drop-off (B)
Today, it is time to say goodbye to this wonderful country. After being transferred to the Havana airport today in order to catch your flight back home, this amazing trip will come to an end.
Please Note: This itinerary can change during the course of the year due to a variety of reasons. We are not always able to advise you in advance of these changes. We ask for your understanding and flexibility in these cases.
Visa Info: To enter Cuba, all foreign travellers will need to obtain a 'tourist card' (Cuban visa) and a valid passport (must be valid for at least 6 months past the date of travel). A tourist card can be obtained from a number of different places - at the airport, at their local Cuban consulate, from their airline company. Many travellers conveniently buy it at the airport - please check beforehand that your local airport actually sells it.
Accommodation Details: A Casa Particular is a private homestay accommodation in an authentic Cuban family home which is licensed by the Cuban government. Cuban families often rent some bedrooms to tourists and offer meals which are served in the family dining room. It is a wonderful way to experience the warm Cuban hospitality and learn about their unique way of life. In a society with limited TV and internet access, Cuban people are famed for their friendly attitudes and for making eager conversation with foreigners so they can learn about the outside world. They are also happy to share their insights about life in Cuba and there’s no doubt that the interaction at a Casa Particular will be enlightening and intriguing.